Young Italian artist wins Osram art award


Osram Kunstpreis 'Light is Osram'

Italian artist Elisa Spanò is the winner of this year’s “Light is Osram” (LIO) art award. The “Inspira” LED luminaire she designed can translate the moods of internet users into different colors, creating a “mood picture” of the World Wide Web. This is the second time that Osram has presented this award for young artists. “The winning project for LIO 2015 uniquely combines digitalization, networking and light. It is therefore representative of the pioneering shift of the industry toward intelligent connected light”, said Olaf Berlien, CEO of OSRAM Licht AG at the award ceremony in the Deutsches Museum in Munich.

Osram announced the LIO award together with the Köln International School of Design (KISD). More than 50 art and design students at the school and its partner schools in Milan, Italy and Philadelphia, USA took part in LIO 2015. Inspired by the slogan “Light connects. In the public space”, their remit was to consider how light based on LED technology can connect people in public places.

The winning entry from Elisa Spanò is based on the fact that the internet is the world’s largest public space. Her luminaire changes color depending on the majority mood of internet users. Inspira takes the data it needs from an online platform that captures the emotions of internet users. The luminaire also interacts with people directly looking at it. A special software developed by the Fraunhofer Institute1 for Integrated Circuits registers their emotions and translates them directly into different light colors.

“The different ways that public space was interpreted in the various entries was particularly exciting to see. The sheer creativity behind the concepts made the decision very difficult for us”, added Professor Wolfgang Laubersheimer, Director of the Cologne International School of Design and member of the LIO jury.

On show at the LIO award ceremony in the Deutsches Museum, in addition to the winning entry, were 17 further designs that particularly impressed the jury. Second place was shared by Peter Bahner with his “Lightbridge” installation, and David Hartgenbusch with “Peek”. Third place went to “Twinkle Light” by Maximilian Philipp Maria Brück. The award comes with a prize of 5,000 euros for first place, 3,000 euros for second place and 2,000 euros for third place.

Inspira will be on display at the Deutsches Museum until the end of February. It forms part of the special “Light is more” exhibition which is taking place to celebrate the International Year of Light. The exhibition includes various Osram exhibits illustrating new applications of light.

With LIO, Osram is continuing its long association with the arts. In addition to this award for young artists, the company lends works from its inhouse art collection to employees. The LIO award will once again be open to international entries in 2016. The slogan will then be “Light is entertainment”. 

For more information on LIO go to

1"SHORETM" (Technology licensed by Fraunhofer IIS |


OSRAM, based in Munich, is a globally leading lighting manufacturer with a history dating back more than 100 years. The portfolio ranges from high-tech applications based on semiconductor technology, such as infrared or laser lighting, to smart and connected lighting solutions in buildings and cities. OSRAM had around 33,000 employees worldwide at the end of fiscal 2015 (September 30) and generated revenue of almost €5.6 billion in that fiscal year. The company is listed on the stock exchanges in Frankfurt and Munich (ISIN: DE000LED4000; WKN: LED 400; trading symbol: OSR). Additional information can be found at