Lighting up the world of interior design

Both natural and artificial light impacts human response and behaviour, as well as influencing and manipulating space through strategic lighting design. This three year full time course investigates lighting for contemporary lifestyle and luxury interiors including architectural spaces (residential, commercial, retail, public), and for entertainment, events and art installations. The course covers a complex mix of technical illustration and drawing skills (CAD), combined with the knowledge and understanding required to correctly interpret the ‘light’ atmosphere of a space, and translate this into creative and technical lighting design solutions. Participants understand the principles of lighting, learning how to successfully create a project outline or light installation for an exhibition, fashion show, retail space, or residence.

They move onto study more technical aspects of lighting design including LED and fibre optics, colour, beam, light shaping, output and distribution, and are encouraged to experiment with contemporary design as well as considering new and innovative approaches in the industry that are evolving today. The study of the relationship between humans, light, and space is an essential element of the whole interior design process, and participants learn the importance of developing a detailed lighting project for different contexts, with particular focus on the fashion and luxury markets, analysing events where lighting installations may take days to set up, for just a few moments of spectacle.

They look at the affect of lighting in retail, and how colour and light intensity change the overall space, or appearance of a product. Case studies of famous Italian lighting brand designers, such as Achille Castiglioni and Vico Magistretti provide an insight into the fundamental synergy between lighting and industrial design as seen in their masterpieces combining tradition and innovation with an accurate study of lighting principles. Participants experience ‘real world’ project development collaborating with companies on industry projects, taking an idea from concept through to final presentation, as well as ‘signing-off’ the space upon completion. Throughout the project they receive professional feedback and guidance from the company while a final graduation showcase provides the opportunity to exhibit their designs, completing the course with the skills to manage projects from a technical and emotive point of view covering all contemporary lifestyle locations.

This course is part of the interior design study pathways. With interior design as the core subject, participants specialise in the chosen area of interest (lighting), positioning themselves as an industry expert with a specific and highly sought after professional profile.

This course is part of the interiors study pathways. With interior design as the core subject, participants specialise in the chosen area of interest (lighting), completing the course with a distinct professional profile.

This course is also available as a BA (Hons) four-year course (including Sandwich Year Placement).

* Participants who successfully complete the three year courses ‘Fashion Design & Accessories*’, ‘Interior Design*’, ‘Product Design’, and ‘Visual Design’ in Milano, will be awarded the AFAM First Level Academic Diploma. Recognised by the Italian Ministry of Education as an academic diploma equivalent to a university undergraduate level degree, participants will obtain 180 CFA (crediti formativi accademici) equivalent to 180 ECTS credits. The pathways held in Milano ‘Fashion Design & Womenswear Pathway’, ‘Fashion Design & Menswear Pathway’, 'Fashion Design & Marketing', ‘Interior Design & Lighting Pathway’, 'Product Design & Furniture', are a specialisation of the recognised AFAM main courses ‘Fashion Design & Accessories’, 'Product Design' and ‘Interior Design’, (Pathway final diplomas will state the main course title). For further details please do not hesitate to contact the information office at the Milano School of Fashion or School of Design. Those who do not meet requirements and successfully complete the study path will be awarded an Istituto Marangoni certificate.

* Participants who successfully complete the programmes taught in English in London and Paris will be awarded a BA (Hons) degree by Manchester Metropolitan University-UK; 120 credit points must be earned for each year of study in order for an honours degree to be awarded, so students will obtain 360 credits upon successful completion of the three-year course. Participants on the four-year sandwich course will receive 120 practice credits for the additional year. All candidates should meet specific requirements (please check the website indicating your nationality and study level). For further details please do not hesitate to contact the information office.

** For the London School, payment must be made in GBP only


  • Lighting for residential spaces
  • Fashion brands
  • Principles of lighting design
  • Lighting for public spaces
  • Lighting for fashion shows and events
  • Innovative lighting systems and effects
  • Translating brand identity into interior design
  • Professional portfolio
  • Illustration and colour techniques
  • CAD
  • History of art and design
  • Research methodology


  • Interior designer for luxury residences, hospitality, retail spaces
  • Lighting specialist for luxury residences, industry, hospitality, retail spaces, exhibition, installation


Year one

  • Interior Architectural Fundamentals
  • Approaching Interior Design, Project and Processes
  • Interior Design Project
  • History of Art, Design and Visual Culture

Year two

  • Contemporary Project Analysis
  • Lighting Design Experience
  • Illumination and Lighting
  • Design and Cultural Perspective

Year three

  • Lighting Interaction
  • Lighting & Branded Environments
  • Final & Graduated Lighting Projects
  • Researching Theory and Practice

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