Brenda  Brown

Map, Schylkill lamp & lookout sites, by Brenda Brown
night-view,Schuylkill lamps & lookouts, Tillettt Lighting
Schuylkill River lookout platform, by Brenda Brown
Lamps, Schuylkill River, Tillett Lighting Design
The proposal has two symbiotic components: lookouts -- river viewing platforms -- and picture-box lanterns -- special pole-mounted lamps.  Both are based on simple, usually geometric structures that support more complex, delicate, and personally and culturally variable uses, images, and experiences.  The components engage visitors and captivatingly reveal multiple aspects of the river's changing face.
Schuylkill lookout swing, Brenda Brown
Schuylkill lookout, Brenda Brown
Picture Box Lanterns
Whether celebratory (as in fireworks and water festivals), ritualistic (as in Japanese boat lanterns or Day of the Dead festivals), or aesthetic, river-way lighting can draw people to a river.  Our picture-box lanterns derive from folk festivals and rituals in which some form of lantern is integral. While such events are usually temporary, we propose a permanent lighting frame for diverse celebrations.  The square lamps (six to a pole) are constructed so their light filters through hand-drawn or painted "shades", and the shades can be changed.  The lantern images, done on paper and then encased, are to be provided by citizens of greater Reading -- whether school-children, adult artists, or members of a subculture.  Because the shades change, they can refer to and support community groups, seasonal festivals, the river, river life, Reading history, . . ..  By making the lantern images and shaping their subjects and themes, individuals and groups  express their identities in the lighting system, seeing them reinforced and illuminated there.  Such engagement may be especially significant for Reading's Central and South American population, in particular those of Mexican origin, for they will be encouraged to bring their Day of the Dead and Carnival celebrations down to the river.  
Viewing Platforms
There are currently few comfortable places to rest; fewer still with good views of the river.  Still, people sit in the few benches there, especially ones with river views.  While Sasaki has planned major structures along the river, but evidently little attention has been paid to smaller scale structures such as we propose.  The Schuylkill River viewing platforms derive from Chinese Garden pavilions that were situated and named according to what was viewed from them -- a mountain, a tree, a waterfall, the moon .... Those pavilions also served other purposes -- resting, meeting, and eating.  Each viewing platform we propose provides views of a different distinctive river-water phenomenon or feature.  Each is also a place to meet, rest, and/or perform -- several are quite theatrical, resembling Renaissance garden stairways or stages -- both for those approaching from the land and those coming from the river. Each varies in size, shape and material.  Each incorporates industrial materials and/or structures of historic or contemporary Reading ; each reflects a gardenesque, industrial romantic, sensibility.  While sites are primarily determined by the river phenomena to be seen from them, their forms have intrinsic interest, they provide landmarks, and they offer opportunities to exercise choice in  their use. They offer programmatic links to Goggleworks dance programs and performances and amphitheater events, as well as sites for drawing and painting from nature, birdwatching and educational activities.  
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example lampshade image-crows
example lampshade image, skeleton rider
example lampshade image, child's painting-boat