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« It’s a feeling of completeness » Ignacio Valero

Ignacio Valero Ubierna is an independent lighting designer and teacher at MASTERDIA based in Madrid, Spain. Interview by Anne Bureau.
12 mars 2015

Interview of Ignacio Valero

What is light for you?

Ignacio Valero: Knowledge. Maybe because I’m a committed lighting design teacher, I don’t know. The point is that I cannot split the fact that:

  • the light reveals us the world around with
  • the metaphor of getting knowledge as enlightenment.
2010 - Photo : Ignacio Valero
2010 – Photo : Ignacio Valero

What is your first light emotion?

IV: Gratitude and joy. From my early years as a kid I experimented light as a blessing that makes me smile. Today is still the same.

2011 - Photo : Ignacio Valero
2011 – Photo : Ignacio Valero

What is your favourite feeling of light?

IV: I do appreciate the most when light and matter blends perfectly in one single experience with any perceived fixtures in the visual field. It’s a feeling of completeness.

2009 - Photo : Ignacio Valero
2009 – Photo : Ignacio Valero

What is for you the most complete light project?

IV: I got emotional the first time I visited the Capuchinas Chapel of Luis Barragán, in Mexico City. A truly masterpiece. Just daylighting and few candles.

2013 - Photo : Ignacio Valero
2013 – Photo : Ignacio Valero

In the future, what do you want light it to do and didn’t do it yet?

IV: I’d like to go deeper into design briefings much more sensations and emotionally driven. How the people feels is becoming prior to how the people see, just because the later is supposed to be achieved.

2015 - Photo : Ignacio Valero
2015 – Photo : Ignacio Valero

What personality of light is the most inspiring?

IV: Many! there is a lot of people everywhere doing stunning things. Maybe the most inspiring situation to me is when it happens to see common people – I mean, people with any special lighting training – who begins to handle the light just for pleasure. This is really wonderful!

2012 - Photo : Ignacio Valero
2012 – Photo : Ignacio Valero

What is your favourite light object?

IV: Ultimately, the smartphone. Everyone has now into their pocket :

  • a personal torch,
  • a camera

and soon :

  • a reliable light meter
  • a light control panel.

This thing is going to do more for the lighting awareness than any other tool.

Other than this I struggle a lot to show :

  • the importance of the humble windows design in an space
  • how relevant are materials and finishing

in the final lighting experience.

2014 - Photo : Ignacio Valero
2014 – Photo : Ignacio Valero

What is your ideal light source?

IV: No doubt: natural light. In all of their countless instances. It is an endless amazement. We just try hard to match a small portion of it.

Interview realized by Anne Bureau via email, March 3rd, 2015.

Ignacio Valero is member of the APDI, Asociación Profesional de Diseñadores de Iluminación, in Spain. He was vice-president.


Conceptrice lumière indépendante depuis 1995. Co-fondatrice en 2011 de l’agence Wonderfulight, avec Nicolas Marquette. Membre des associations IALD, ILA, AFE, ACE - dont elle fut présidente. Intervient pour des conférences et des workshops dans le monde entier. Designer de formation. A travaillé avec Yann Kersalé, Roger Narboni et Georges Berne.
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