Bright lines between tradition and modernity in the Alte Aktienspinnerei

Since 2020, the best conditions for reading and learning can be found in the building of the Alte Aktienspinnerei in Chemnitz. Built in the middle of the 19th century, it was one of the most modern spinning mills in Saxony at the time. After a chequered history with constant changes of use, war damage, vacancy, decay and demolition considerations, the idea matured to use this Chemnitz icon of the industrial revolution as the central library of the Technical University. The result is more than 11,000 square metres of storage and open-air space with over 700 workstations.
Individually manufactured lamps from mawa illuminate large parts of the building. They do justice to a wide range of uses and stand up well in the context of demanding monument renovation. When arranging the workstations, the planners always tried to keep them close to daylight. This has been achieved particularly impressively in the central reading room. Here, both the impressive daylight ceiling and the potsdam table lamps provide ideal working conditions. Seats located on the upper floor are also grouped around the daylight-flooded centre of the Mittelbau and are bounded at the back by a fixed wall shelf. Linear lamps follow the rhythm of the acoustic ceiling above. Compared to classical fluorescent lamps, their diffuse beam characteristics are concentrated exclusively on the half-space below, thus ensuring particularly efficient general lighting. In the entrance hall, the designers decided to take up the design of the coffered ceiling and combine ten linear individual luminaires on a square basic construction. The challenge was to make the construction hinged in order to be able to service ventilation and loudspeaker components positioned at the rear.