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Lighting of cultural heritage as a tool to exhibit historical architectural values in the context of creative industries (the case of Ukmerge)/Kulturinio paveldo apsvietimas kaip priemone atskleisti istorines architekturos vertybes kurybiniu industriju kontekste (Ukmerges atvejis).


The article is based on suggestion that creative industries generate and manage some ideas which are lower in investment and higher in return. As the result of the creative industries an additional value is created which might enrich the project both in intangible and physical outcomes.

Creative industries have appeared at the end of the 20th century economic environment and, according to John Howkins (Howkins 2007) is the core of the creative economy. According to Edvins Karnitis (Karnitis 2006: 96), economy becomes based on innovation and the creativity in jobs, on new labor methods and relations. A development of society becomes dependant on knowledge, which, according to Borisas Melnikas (Melnikas 2010: 524), is the society which is characterized by the values of the predominance of creativity and creative activity. Along with these transformations appear specific changes in the creative industries. The creative economy is based on the capital of ideas rather than physical capital; it is developed on the basis of the information and communication technology (Howkins 2007). The greatest effect of the creative economy is represented not through traditional creative industries but through practice of skills, entrepreneurship and business models and creation of organizational value both managing intellectual property. Organizations and public projects become more dependent on creativity. It is caused by withdrawal of traditional physical materials and integration of intangible materials and intellectual stock. Modern society engages with demand of entertainment, as a result work merges with leisure, day with night. Contemporary life, especially in cities, is being more and more lived at night, as many people nowadays work, travel, communicate, have fun and rest exclusively at late hours. The dark time of the day gets by far longer in autumn and winter season. Every object at night is perceived only when it is lightened, and this points not only to the utilitarian human needs (such as safety, orientation in space, etc.), but also to certain visual possibilities, available when one can control the light--illuminating the environment so that its values would be stressed out, even those which may not be revealed in daylight (Valevicius 2009). In order to achieve higher aesthetic value of a city image after dark--and dark periods of the day are gaining more significance within the urban life rhythm (due to tourism, entertainment, retail, leisure, etc.),--the city artistic lighting study should be performed. Based on such study results, urban lighting plans should be prepared to solve the pending aesthetic and technical issues. Such kind of projects no doubt should involve different professionals. Creative industries in this case might serve as mediator between arts, technology, media, management.

Creative industries cover different subsectors. According to the Creative Economy Report (Creative Economy Report 2008) creative industries are subdivided into four major groups: heritage, arts, media, and functional production. Creative industries are defined as (Creative Economy Report 2010): a) the cycles of creation, production and distribution of goods and services that use creativity and intellectual capital as primary inputs; b) constitute a set of knowledge-based activities, focused on but not limited to arts, potentially generating revenues from trade and intellectual property rights; c) comprise tangible products and intangible intellectual or artistic services with creative content, economic value and market objectives; d) stand at the crossroads of the artisan, services and industrial sectors; e) constitute a new dynamic sector in world trade. According to Tomas S. Butkus (Butkus 2011), urban reproduction should conscript on inner-cities, forgotten city territories, and focus on non-exploited cultural potential and priority sectors as immovable cultural property heritage, recreational recourses, creative industries, public areas and spaces. The second part of the article presents a case of Ukmerge; where some overviewed principles of the first part of the article are adapted.

Artificial lighting permits the creation of scenes that complement and lead to other readings. According to Roger Narboni (Narboni 2004), it stimulates the sensations and provokes our imagination in completely transforming public spaces at the daytime. With Ukmerge case authors want to show how some ideas on creative industries create virtual nocturnal public spaces which place in question our perception and our reading of landscape space in daylight and in darkness, when partial shadow, night, shadows, and contrasts must be considered for all forms of lighting as essential elements necessary to the creation of the overall scene. Authors believe that the masterful orchestration of shadow and light means the conservation of the spirit, mystery, charm of the place, and especially expands heritage features.

Historical overview of Ukmerge

In 2002 the downtown of Ukmerge was listed to Register of Cultural Properties and has received cultural heritage code U36 (Kulturos paveldo departamentas prie Kulturos ministerijos 2010). There were determined historical, architectural, urbanistic and landscape values. Knowledge of creative industries should enrich and propagate these values.

The history of Ukmerge dates back to 1225 and is related to the castle of duke Dausprungas. However archeological analysis provides with assumption that till 1225 there already existed both castle and settlement. After 1435 Pabaiskas battle Ukmerge has received Magdeburg Rights. Supposedly the town has expanded in the 15th century but for the first time it was marked on the country map in 1595 only. In 1656 Ukmerge was occupied by Swedes, later on it has suffered from plague, and in the 18th century was destroyed by several fires. Since the middle of the 19th century Ukmerge belonged to Kaunas Gubernatory. In 1817 there was an actual state plan completed which shows that Ukmerge has expanded both geographically and populationally. The expansion was stimulated by trade; and the main trade objects were production of linen as in the 19th century Ukmerge was famous for being one of the linen material centers. However, since 1895 Ukmerge started diminishing, private sector trade went downhill. The city developed slowly for the reason of not having rail. It might be stated that present plan of Ukmerge was formed till the end of the 19th century, later on some changes made slight corrections. Since the very beginning Ukmerge panorama was concentrated on the mound with wooden castle on it, which later turned into stone castle. Pretty same view left till nowadays. There is no clear architectural dominant, bold silhouette, high structure, which no doubt is a typical element of many historically and urbanistically less important towns and settlements. In the beginning of the 20th century the mound was planted--the most important individual town dominant was hidden, which at the same time has devaluated the town silhouette and historical elements of the town panorama (Figs. 1-2). But through all Ukmerge history, the mound was not ever knowingly exposed as an asset which represents the city and defines its identity.



Ukmerge mound is one of the most important city attributes. Therefore one of the ambitions of Ukmerge Municipality is to find solutions how to integrate the territory of the mound into the urban area of the town. This unique territory covers the area of the mound, the river Sventoji, a crossroads of Vilnius, Vytautas, and Piliakalnis streets. In the year 2010 Ukmerge Municipality has initiated the architectural urban development project and one of the authors of this article (Martynas Valevicius together with Mecislovas Valevicius, Austeja Malaiskiene and Linas Janenas) has won the competition between six proposals.

Issues to be analyzed before Ukmerge urban development project

Much in advance before starting Ukmerge urban development project, an iconographic material was analysed. Photographies of Ukmerge have opened a visual treasury. Analytical historical visual analysis has led to the period of "golden age" and lifestyles of Ukmerge. Surprisingly a large number of town houses were discovered. Former urban coverage intensity totally ignored the river Vilkmergele, which, to put it mildly, have became a refuse ditch. Many buildings around were dense and chaotic, and went down the bank. The fact is confirmed by surface water trays built in Vytautas street; trays led to river Vilkmergele (Figs. 3-4). A Tsar period photo fiction represents perimeter buildings; an accent was put onto strategic crossroads. However even in this period one might understand the ecological environment was pretty bad.



Nowadays the environment is totally different. A city is less dense, former old streets prints are turned to kitchen-gardens and chaotic warehouses. Part of the second half of the 20th century urban and architectural changes of Ukmerge downtown deformed a historical urban cloth, relations between quarters, scale of heights, and volumetric spatial composition. No doubt a negative impact was made by few public buildings which were built deflecting the perimeter; there was an artificial square formed which has no functional meaning and makes the main square (Kestutis) less important talking about old town volumetric spaces. New blocks have formed unusual size quarter, which holds many technical buildings, warehouses, garages and so on. Part of these crummy buildings has blocked the possibility to form or restore movement attractions, impede the creation of aesthetical and more comfortable city life. Another bold postwar example is town cinema hall built in 1957 and located in Kestutis Square. The building was build according to a multiple project, nowadays it looks shabby and discord with the environment. Somehow the building was included into Register of Cultural Properties. Most important and valuable are architectural details and the building mission for public purposes. It should be mentioned that the central part of the old town with a single postwar shabby building which covers central area and changes the harmony of former urban scale is planned not correctly. There are no buildings in this area (around Vytautas street No. 3) left but many of iconographical material and inventory data represent former building plan. In the beginning of the 20th century the mound and the hill of Ukmerge were planted, at the same time there were changed important elements of town panoramic view--they simply got the image of overgrown hills. Pretty same looks the central--Kestutis Square which was former market square and historically could not be overgrown with tall trees.

Site analysis of Ukmerge mound according to knowledge of creative industries

Firstly, there should be proposed solutions regarding the integration of the mound into town urbanistic structure. The area is sensitive due to former manufacture which is placed on the banks of the rivers Sventoji and Vilkmergele, and Russian Old Believers Church territory. Secondly, there should be designed transportation, bicycling, and pedestrian ways. Thirdly, there should be proposed solutions regarding reconstruction or building of present buildings and humanizing of the river Vilkmergele banks. There also should be designed a mound observation platform and access to it. Later on there should be designed a public events area for 150-200 seats. Also, there should be planned a space for art object exhibition and proposed a lighting plan. It is also very important to plan small architecture details as benches, information stands, etc. Fourthly, solutions for planting should be prepared. Fifthly, a proposal regarding former sauna complex ruins use for public needs and establishing of mound information center should be prepared.

For solving all diversity of these problems, the light as effective tool which could unite them was chosen.

Ukmerge mound urban design in details

Lifestyles of Ukmerge inhabitants are constantly changing. People occupy urban spaces later and later into the night. The increasing sense of insecurity that has affected the collective consciousness has resulted in the perceived need and sometimes the necessity of lighting large spaces, parks, gardens, and squares. Large vegetal masses in Ukmerge center, which during the daytime form an integral part of the urban composition, are quite dark or very weakly lit at night. These public spaces generate "black holes", insecure areas in the urban nightscape. The green spaces developed alongside rivers form vegetal facades that are dark and quite long.

Darkly colored Vilkmergele river acts as magic mirror. Water jets and cascades masterfully could conduct natural and artificial light. The idea is that water screen should receive projected images of Ukmerge mound. The liquid element, transparent or translucent will play with the phenomena of reflection, refraction, and diffusion. That is why the right bank of river Vilkmergele is designed to spread out and form organic turn. To stress optically a curved shape of river banks, and to guide a view from Vytautas street bridge to the mound the lighting equipment will be positioned as close as possible to the axis of the stream at left bank of the river. The consistency of the jet flumped, agitated, mystifies its form, magnitude, and rate of flow largely determine the luminous effects produced (Fig. 5).


The enclosure and bottom surface of the river may also be illuminated by submersed intermediate projectors, or through a system of fiber optic terminals. The volume of the water itself thus appears to materialize through light. The luminous surface of the water negates the reflection of surrounding images and the possibility of perceiving them. The tint for the base and surrounds of the river is also important. Because it is very dark, the mirroring quality of the surface of the water will be emphasized, reflecting surrounding light conditions from the mound. If the tint was very light, the luminescent volume of the water in the river was effacing reflections.

Sculptures along the river Vilkmergele are considered as a related problem, the locations of monuments necessitate a balanced nocturnal composition that does not solely privilege the monument as object, divorcing it from its environment. Public spaces function later and later in the night. The green spaces of residential districts, house and apartment gardens become night-time images. In order to analyze a competition project, it is important to start by observing and then attempting to understand the lay of the land, and to inventory plant species. Following this inventory, the different elements to be illuminated must then be chosen and placed in hierarchy, in consideration of the composition of the whole ensemble. In our case sculptures play a secondary role, but they also should be lighted. Sculptures are situated along the river, and rhythm of lights which compound them fit to main idea: to guide optically the view of the observer to the mound.

The roof of information center will be marked with the lines of light and this lighting trick will orientate visitors. At night, the vision is totally guided or directed. Eyes are at first attracted by points of light, then by zones of bright lighting, in sequence, as they follow decreasing levels of luminosity, until the darkest zones are reached (Brandi 2007). Thin lines of light are chosen, because such sources of light conserve correct vision and minimize glare.

The public events area for 150-200 seats is treated as organic surface. The analysis of its shape begins with the study of their boundaries, which in some cases form the reference lines in the preceding stage of analysis. One may also observe the boundaries between square and buildings, trees, streets, monuments, etc. One next examines the forms (as soil volumes) and the composition of surfaces, their colors, and finally their position in the space and their visual interactions. The boundary areas between different natural elements are, in fact, very interesting places to accentuate: shores of water areas, banks of rivers, edges of woods, edges of beaches, etc. The lighting of them, the diversity is designed based on nocturnal perception, which depends on the average level of luminosity of an observed scene, on relative contrasts, and on the time required for visual adaptation.

The ruins of sauna play an important role in the composition of a public space. They do not all have good quality, but they are important to inventory and analyze as the visual screens which could be lighted from the bottom and appear mysteriously.

Classifying and placing in hierarchy all inventory around Ukmerge mound completes and finalizes the two-dimensional analysis. Buildings, constructions and monuments, large isolated trees, river, high points, and diverse focal points are all carefully noted. Next, their position, scale, forms and colors, and possible impact on the nocturnal spaces are analyzed.

The elevations of Ukmerge mound, forms, inclines, contour lines, and the juxtaposition of low points and plains affirm that these sloping lines give the site its three-dimensional qualify, and are generally the most legible identifying sign of the landscape. Therefore it is very important to mention how to read a public space. One must then try to understand the morphology of the observed nightscape: hillsides, dales, buttes, plains, plateaus, valleys, estuaries, cliffs, mountains, hills, inlets, islands, etc. It is very important to observe and analyze the public space at different hours of the day, during different seasons, and under different climatic conditions in order to record changes in textures and colors. Diverse lighting conditions generate shadows that reveal different aspects of the same landscape. The top of the mound will be lighted with stripes of light, which delicately will mark the mound like a crown. This light crown could remind a castle or other senses (Fig. 6). Although they are not a priori within the field of the lighting design, the sensations, outdoors, sounds, and textures are obviously intimately connected to the processes of analyzing a public space. Their cultural and sociological composition is in fact essential.

The visual analysis carried out on Ukmerge mound area was completed by a detailed reading of different maps and plans. The points where observations were made and the corresponding cones of vision were carefully recorded on these maps. The observed urban space is thus superimposed mentally on the two-dimensional map. This representation was useful because on that computer systems were designed which could modulate the lighting in relation to usage and frequency of visitation. It may also be used to compose differing scenic effects with regard to the seasons, tourist attractions and special events, and to revitalize an abandoned symbolic space. All of these systems provide the innovative technical solutions. The maintenance of all lighting programmes is an important factor. In this case of lighting the public space, this constraint is integrated into the basic conception of the project. In fact, weather conditions (rain, frost, snow), continual growth of vegetation, the presence of animal species, pollution (particulate, saline or corrosive atmosphere) may radically affect the means of execution. The unavoidable necessity of regularly changing lamps, and the conditions and logistics by which this will be done, are accounted for in the selection of lighting equipment and considered at the earliest study phase.


Creative solutions

First of all the project should start from clearing the recreational public space by the mound, the river Vilkmergele and ruins of the former sauna. A space should be equipped with amphitheatrical open stage. Its plain part lowers toward the river. By the present bridge there would be constructed cascade waterfall. The curve of the river Vilkmergele should be broadened. For making the banks more stable stone boulders should be constructed. The curve area would be attractive for summer bathing (Fig. 7).


Due to state financial downturn it is recommended to cut the project into three shorter-term projects. The first stage should manage with pedestrian steps (Vytautas street and river direction). Along with the left bank of the river there should be formed a sculpture park. A bridge to reach the right bank should be constructed. From there one could access Moletai street and cafe with an open terrace. During this term there should be broadened the curve of the river Vilkmergele and prepared a public event space by the former sauna ruins. A last milestone is building the main access to the mound.

The second and most important period of the project should cover reconstruction of the viaduct of the bridge in Vytautas street under which there flows river Vilkmergele; along it there would b easy access for pedestrians and bicyclists (Figs. 8-9). A proposed solution would safely connect North-Western and South-Eastern parts of the town, at the same time there would be reinstated historical path along the river, mound, church (Panevezys direction).


The third part of the project proposes to prolong pedestrian and bicyclists track along the river Vilkmergele down to the river Sventoji. Beyond the present bridge the surface close to water level should be lowered and the pedestrian path constructed. Follow-on there should be reconstructed vehicle bridge (Paupio street) and formed passage under the bridge. Along by the confluence of two rivers there should be constructed pedestrian and bicyclists' bridge (Fig. 10).



It is proposed to reconstruct urban artery "river--mound--church" which could serve for pedestrians and bicyclists. The artery should be designed along the river Vilkmergele; it should connect the city with water and mound as history with landscape. The path is imagined as surrounding park with single trees and plant groups, benches, aesthetic trainers, children playgrounds, sculptures, and appropriate illumination. Pedestrian paths should be comfortable to all walkers: children, parents with strollers, seniors, handicapped. Conifers as typical plant type of sandy banks of river Sventoji would be main plants in this park. Banks of the river Sventoji should keep its original nature character: there should be preserved naturals paths, coves, flora, and small beaches beloved by locals, fishing bridges, boat wharfs. There could also be riders' path coming from hippodrome down to mound as a part of Ukmerge inhabitant lifestyle. Along to the river Sventoji situated former fur manufactory should be turned to the hotel. Hotel could specialize in water entertainment and local tourism. Close to the hotel there could be equipped boat, canoe, river yacht wharf; the hotel could manage local beach, camping and water entertainment services (Fig. 11).


Naturally, some problems might appear as unfortunately, too frequently all features, trees, rockwork, etc., over-illuminate with uplighting. This approach, though acceptable at the scale of the pedestrian, is counter-productive when one wants to create a regional nocturnal nightscape. The luminous points formed by projectors recessed or installed on the ground may pollute the global image. The luminance given off by illuminated trees and rockwork is often too weak to be perceived at a distance, or on the contrary, is too strong to support a coherent reading of one section of the site. Thus the visual decoding of the fragmented scene becomes increasingly impossible, and in the end this type of intervention contributes to the visual collapse of a project.


Creative industries cover different sectors with main aim--to generate and manage ideas which are lower in investment and higher in return. It might enrich cultural heritage project both in intangible and physical outcomes. For example, Ukmerge Municipality is unique with its heritage objects as mound with its environment, e.g. archeological ruins of former brick castle, which are not well preserved and not integrated into city panorama. Proposed solutions purify unique elements of Ukmerge. A city finds its identity, becomes more attractive and hospitable. At the same time a respect to nature, ecology, harmony, tradition is presented. It becomes a part of Lithuanian cultural heritage. The main concept of the proposal to Ukmerge Municipality competition was to reveal the history and tie it in with the on-going situation and its users. The design addresses the contrasts within the area history and contemporary developments. Artificial lighting techniques serve to reveal new aspects of public places to all those who appreciate them or want simply to discover them. The image of the nocturnal public spaces and its associated creations should respond to our perceptual sense. The analysis of an urban space is often more intuitive than descriptive, a method that may appear limited. However, it facilitates the reading of many key urban space elements, in connection with the formulation of the lighting concept. This technical method of analysis is to be applied only after a sensitive reading of the space, where individuals must take into account the emotions and sensations induced; the study must not overwhelm the intuitions of simple discovery too early on. Delicately illuminating the mound and only revealing its pure form underlines Ukmerge history and its identity. At the same time, the proposed ideas pay attention to human-scale lighting, which can be discerned in the pedestrian bridge and walkways. In these areas, the overall lighting speaks of a warm and inviting ambience, which underscores residential characteristics of the space. At night, the mound transforms into an exquisite urban sculpture. Viewer can reminisce about the old days or use their imagination to reinterpret what the mound might represent.

Received 15 July 2011, accepted 25 October 2011


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Martynas Valevicius (1), Rasa Levickaite (2)

Vilnius Gediminas Technical University, (1) Faculty of Architecture, Department of Building Structures (2) Institute of Humanities, Department of Philosophy and Political Theory, Sauletekio al. 11, LT-10223 Vilnius, Lithuania

E-mails: (1); (2); (2)
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Author:Valevicius, Martynas; Levickaite, Rasa
Article Type:Report
Geographic Code:4EXLT
Date:Dec 1, 2011
Previous Article:Conceptualization of visual representation in urban planning/Vizualiosios reprezentacijos miesto planavime konceptualizavimas.
Next Article:Preface.

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