Studio/tutors : Marilyne Andersen (EPFL),  Mark Pauly (EPFL),  Javier Fernández Contreras (HEAD – Genève), Florin Isvoranu (EPFL)
HEAD Assistant : Alice Proux
Epfl Assistant :  Megan Danell
* conducted together with students   of HEAD-Genève’s Bachelor in Interior Architecture
participation in The Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism 
The CIRCA DIEM project is developed by EPFL and HEAD – Genève for the Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism 2021. The installation raises awareness about the impact of our daily exposure to light and its dynamics in dense urban environments, which becomes even more important when considering underground life. Circa diem – “about one day” in Latin – is at the origin of what we call our “circadian rhythms” and suggests here a deep and essential link with the natural day-night cycle.​​​​​​​
"The Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism 2021 (SBAU) is the first global architectural event entirely produced following a pandemic that has altered and challenged the foundations of our civilization. Entitled “CROSSROADS Building the resilient”, it intends to gather different forms of intelligence to reflect on the city of the future as a more sustainable, resilient and comfortable place for its inhabitants. The exhibition is hosted in the Dongdaemun Design Plaza designed by Zaha Hadid in Seoul, South Korea" 
– ​​​​​​​2021 EPFL / Alain Herzog – CC BY-SA 4.0​​​​​​​
© 2021 EPFL / Alain Herzog
The Circa Diem project, developed collaboratively by EPFL and HEAD - Geneva, is set to captivate visitors at the Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism 2021. The installation aims to raise awareness about the impact of our daily exposure to light and its dynamics in densely populated cities, which becomes even more critical when considering the effects on people living underground.
Circa diem, a Latin term that translates to «about one day» is the origin of our circadian rhythms and underscores the fundamental connection between human physiology and the natural day-night cycle. The installation provides an immersive sensory experience, allowing visitors to witness the profound effects of light on our neurophysiology as they journey through the four phases of the 24 - hour day - morning, midday, evening, and night.
As more people choose to live in cities, our exposure to natural light becomes increasingly limited, impacting our overall health and well-being. Architects and urban planners must consider the impact of light on the built environment and redirect light rays through spatial form to create more liveable spaces. The CIRCA DIEM installation showcases a dynamic choreography of light and dark, color, words, and images, alluding to the multiple dimensions of circadian rhythmicity in the built environment.
In summary, the Circa Diem project serves as a reminder of the importance of light in our daily lives and its significant impact on our neurophysiology, particularly in dense urban environments. The installation offers a unique and captivating experience, encouraging visitors to reflect on their relationship with light and the built environment.

© 2021 EPFL / Alain Herzog

© 2021 EPFL / Alain Herzog

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