Tribby Arts Center Nurtures Residents’ Creative Spirt

Architectural luminaires complement Center’s unique design

The recently constructed $25 million, two-story, 44,000-square-foot Tribby Arts Center opened as a dedicated space for Shell Point Retirement Community residents’ creative activities. Along with a 400-seat hall for musical, theatrical and educational programming, it boasts nine visual, performing and literary arts studios, plus rotating art galleries, a gift shop, and a café. The facility’s unique asymmetrical design was done by Chris Lee, principal architect and president of Southwest Florida-based Christopher J. Lee Architects Inc.

The building includes a grand entrance and atrium, three art galleries and multiple practice rooms for music, dance and performing arts. It also features specialized studios for painting, pottery, quilting, textiles, stained-glassmaking, crafting and photography. Lee noted that the building serves as a frame for the artistic collaboration and creation taking place inside.

“We saw the increasing value these programs brought to resident life, and we wanted to provide a center that would allow all of the groups to come together in one dedicated space that would encourage and enhance their creative experiences”

- Martin Schappell, Shell Point president and CEO

The contemporary-style building sets the tone for an industrial interior designed by Wegman Design Group. Amber Caton, design director at Wegman Design Group, explained, “We really wanted to create this clean and modern environment to act as a backdrop for all of the artists working in this space, while including features that would really inspire them.”

The Challenge

The luminaires had to complement the Center’s bold architecture and interior design as well as effectively illuminate the many varied installation areas. Caton felt it was essential to have clean looking fixtures with various lighting temperature options to address different user groups’ needs. Additionally, each studio group had their own requests for lighting, including specific lighting temperatures. The luminaires selected needed to bring a unique balance between form, function and flexibility.

The Solution

To meet these challenges, Bonita Springs, FL-based West Coast Lighting specified Axis Lighting’s Sketch Pendant for the fixture’s elegant and graceful curves, and because these fixtures complement the Center’s clean lines and contemporary design.

The Sculpt recessed fixtures were specified in the artists’ studios that include exposed ceilings provide an elegance to the contemporary space. The installed linear fixtures were chosen for the sleek clean lines and the multitude of available color temperatures.

Sketch SurroundLite provides the Center the flexibility of high efficacy spherical three dimensional wide batwing distributions and shielding options that result in true lighting effectiveness. 

An innovative technology to get much more out of LEDs, SurroundLite is based on the fundamental physics of how light interacts with matter. The specially engineered lightguide is made of precisely coded and aligned molecules that shape LED output in all three dimensions. With SurroundLite’s extra-wide, multidimensional light distribution, light is directed in all three planes and sent in every corner of the room, perfect for the painting, pottery, and glass studios. 

Additionally, Axis Lighting’s Slim SurroundLite is installed in the quilting, crafts, and performing arts studios, and music ensemble and music suites to provide ample lighting and a clean, contemporary look. The low-profile Twig luminaires, which deliver uniform, indirect lighting, are installed because they’re ideal for the Center’s low ceilings. Graze Perfekt’s high-performance wall grazing optics and the 1.5”-wide aperture are optimal for lighting the Tribby Art Center sign in the grand lobby. This luminaire’s innovative and compact linear silicone total internal reflection optic delivers a precise, consistent wide-beam angle (10º x 100º) without color-over-angle artifacts.

The Result

“We were impressed with the range of options that Axis Lighting fixtures provide. They allowed us to keep a consistent look throughout the spaces, while still addressing each user group’s needs,” added Caton.

Because these luminaires have integral control-ready drivers and a simple optical, electrical and mechanical connection system, they were easily integrated into the automated building system for control via a tablet.


Project Team Architect: Christopher J. Lee Architects Inc
Engineer: Energy Concepts of SW Florida
Designer: Wegman Design Group
Manufacturers’ Representative: West Coast Lighting
Lighting Manufacturer: Axis Lighting
Photography: © Amber Frederiksen Photography