Cubus Hotel, Düsseldorf - Architekt: schneider+schumacher, Frankfurt am Main - Ausgestattet mit JUNG LS 990 in Schwarz. © JÖRG HEMPEL PHOTODESIGN

In conversation with: Till Schneider

schneider+schumacher, Frankfurt am Main

In your company schneider+schumacher you repeatedly use the LS 990 switch range by JUNG for all kinds of construction projects – why?

Till Schneider: I myself came across JUNG switches in the architecture studios I worked in when I was a student in the 1980s. At Oswald Matthias Ungers the LS 990 was the only switch they used – then still in white. It was a similar story later on when I was at eisele + fritz. Although the architecture there was entirely different, they used the same light switches and sockets. And I also heard from fellow architects at other studios at the time that the range was pretty popular there too. So it was an obvious choice for me to use the LS 990 in the first projects of my own too.

As of when did you want to have the switches in black?

Till Schneider: In the late 1980s I converted the attic in my father’s house in Darmstadt and clad one of the walls in black panels. I wanted switches and sockets in the same colour, but couldn’t get them from JUNG. So
I went to an auto body paint shop and had the LS 990 components sprayed black. These switches still work today and haven’t lost any of their colour. When our studio grew later on, we had a hotel project in Düsseldorf in 1996 and wanted black walls there too. We contacted JUNG again and because this project was a lot bigger than the last, this time they agreed to produce a dark version for us. It was already on the drawing board back then anyway.

“I also heard from fellow architects at other studios at the time
that the range was pretty popular there too ...”

And now JUNG even offers painted switches ...

Till Schneider: ... yes, the version in the Le Corbusier colours is a real boon. If you don’t want to celebrate the installation, but rather integrate it, it is an obvious choice to use coloured switches. On coloured walls a white switch sometimes just doesn’t look right.

Do you have any other wishes as regards the range?

Till Schneider: I hope above all that the processof switching itself doesn’t get too complicated, for instance with the use of touchscreens. It is 
already the case today that you sometimes don’t know how to switch the lights off in a hotel room. Despite having a great affinity with technology, there have been times when I too have had to unscrew the bulb or pull out the plug in such a situation. Before I have to read detailed instructions for use, I would prefer simply being able to flick a regular switch.

So the classic switch will be around for sometime to come?

Till Schneider: Yes, in many cases it will remainthe best solution in the future too.

The interview was conducted by Christian Schittich, architect and specialist author.

Städel Museum, Frankfurt/Main - Architect: schneider+schumacher, Frankfurt/Main - Fitted with JUNG LS 990 in white. © NORBERT MIGULETZ