Photo: Stefan Wolf Lucks
Photo: Stefan Wolf Lucks

Herz-Jesu-Kirche Berlin

Light awakens colour

In order to see colors, we need light. This can be experienced impressively in the Catholic church in Berlin’s Prenzlauer Berg district.

In the course of the ongoing restauration of the interior which began in 2017, an artificial lighting concept was reworked in 2020. To meet the requirements of the light planner, Christoph Achtelik, mawa took the one piece ceiling uplight and developed two custom lighting types from it.

Project Developer and Client

Katholische Pfarrgemeinde Herz Jesu, Berlin


Dubois Muhler Neitzke Architekten + Ingenieure GbR, Berlin


Atelier für Restaurierung Annette Sturm, Berlin

Gefördert durch

Bundesrepublik Deutschland (Sonderprogramm Denkmalschutz VI/2)
Land Berlin
Erzbistum Berlin
Förderkreis der Herz-Jesu-Kirche Berlin

Lighting design

Designatelier Achtelik, Berlin (Christoph Achtelik)

Project management mawa design

Dirk Salewski

Scope of services

11 × one piece wall luminaire individually manufactured according to op8-4-3000-RAL1019
indirect LED module 43 W, 3000 K, 3400 lm, DALI DIM; direct LED module 1 × wi4.0 LED head 24° 12.7 W, 3000 K, 700 mA, 1200 lm, CRI>90, medium, grey beige matt

3 × one piece wall luminaire individually manufactured according to op8-4-3000-RAL1019
indirect LED module 43 W, 3000 K, 3400 lm, DALI DIM, grey beige matt

6 × one piece wall luminaire custom-made to op9-4-3000-RAL1019
indirect LED module 86 W, 3000 K, 8000 lm, DALI DIM; direct LED module 4 × fbl light unit, total 68W, grey beige matt

4 × fbl special housing
34 W, 3000 K, DALI DIM, grey beige matt

Photo: Stefan Wolf Lucks

Surprising in every respect

Upon entering the catholic church building, an enormous spatial volume unfolds, one that could hardly be imagined from its inconspicuously embedded placement in the narrow street. Further, the visitor is immediately captivated by the decoratively painted interior. Seemingly hard to beat in radiance and colour intensity, it is reminiscent of Byzantine picture churches.

Photo: Stefan Wolf Lucks

Strength and uniformity combined

In the central nave, the requirement as much as possible, was to brightly illuminate the barrel vaulting situated high above the column capitals, while at the same time, homogenously lighting the seating rows below without glare.

Photo: Stefan Wolf Lucks

To that end, four slim lighting elements from the fbl series were integrated into the underside of the inclined front edge of the uplight.

Photo: Stefan Wolf Lucks

There was a similar requirement profile for the side aisles. The illumination of the cross vaults was to be combined with the accentuation of the framed portraits on the outer pillars. This was accomplished through the integration of a movable light head from the wittenberg 4.0 series. Tilted out from the lighting level, and equipped with the appropriate interchangeable lens, these spotlights bring each of the images to life.

Photo: mawa
Photo: mawa design

mawa not only meets the design requirements, but fulfills highly technical demands such as freedom from flickering as well. In-house production enables short distances and spontaneous negotiation. Thus for this project, it was possible in short order, to produce an empty housing to help the client better visualize the proposal in the course of a 1:1 dimensional study.

Photo: Stefan Wolf Lucks