IMPACT: DESIGN THINKING AND THE VISUAL ARTS IN YOUNG INDIA

CURATED BY CHATTERJEE & LAL

The post-independence period in India witnessed the beginning of a new design culture with the founding of quality institutions and initiatives in arts, crafts and cultural projects across India. In the quest for a unique modern identity, the architecture and design trajectory of an independent India aspired to establish a significant voice in the making of a new kind of society. In this context, the exhibition: IMPACT: Design Thinking and the Visual Arts in Young India attempts to foreground the radical design discourse in India in the 20th century, featuring select works of individuals, groups and organisations at the intersection of art, craft and design.   

Mitter Bedi (1926-1985) | Godrej Chairs c.1970 | Image Courtesy: Mitter Bedi Collection, Godrej Archives

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MODERN HERITAGE

The contribution of the history of modern architecture in India is unparalleled in terms of the many experiments that were embarked upon in search of spatial and social innovations that were responsive to the cultural, social, political and economic landscape of India. At a time when architecture in India needs a critical review, it is this history that serves as a reference and a foundation.


Mapping Modern History


1930 – 1949 

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STUDIO: KSM ARCHITECTURE

Studio culture – as with all manifestations of the human intellect – is the embodiment of a pattern of work that nurtures the craft of building. Architecture workspaces are especially readable in this context as architects are, in this case, designing for themselves. With every workplace as distinct and specific as the work it produces, the people who design and work in these environments reveal their ideas about space-making.

In this edition of the STUDIO series, we enquire about the processes, approaches, work ethics, and the trajectory of a long-standing Chennai-based practice KSM Architecture led by Sriram Ganapathi and Siddarth Money.


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DRAWING TO FIND OUT [05]: SHUBHRA RAJE

Shubhra Raje, principal architect of shubhra raje_built environments closely engages with different drawing practices within her studio. By excavating and analysing visual material in Shubhra’s studio, we attempt to decipher the draftsmanship cultures, their relationship with the design process and the way in which they inform her practice.


Images and Drawings: Courtesy Shubhra Raje
Author: Vedanti Agarwal
Curation and Film: Matter.

Shubhra Raje’s practice emphasizes the act of drawing as a means of critical thinking. Her rigorous drawing habit traces back to schooling years at CEPT University, where drawing by hand was ingrained in the academic rigour. However, her perceptions on the necessity to draw as a mode of thinking (as against drawing to represent) evolved through learnings during her time at the Cornell University. Representational drawings command a style that is conscious of its viewers. Design-thinking drawings are undisturbed collaterals between the engaged hand and the searching mind, oblivious of another eye. The scale of Shubhra’s practice enables her to engage with all stages of drawing in the design development process.

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DIALOGUE: The Bangalore Workshop 2018

As a part of the closing conversation of the 2018 edition of The Bangalore Workshop, Richard Leplastrier, Peter Stutchbury, Madhura Prematilleke and Niall McLaughlin discuss the challenges of making and teaching architecture of gravitas in a world with a visual bias.  

7th April 2018, IIM Bangalore
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[TML] The Takshila Lecture on Architecture and Society

To mark the opening of the 2018-19 cycle of The Merit List, The First Takshila lecture on Architecture and Society was delivered by Prof Neelkanth Chhaya on August 14, 2018. The lecture was followed by a dialogue with Bijoy Ramachandran and an interaction with the audience.

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SITE-VISIT: HILLTOP SCHOOL BY DesignAware

Perched on a hill top within the walls of the majestic Golconda Fort sits the stark but vibrant Hilltop School designed by the Hyderabad-based DesignAware led by Architect Takbir Fatima.  Arshiya Syed, a Hyderbad-based Architect and Urban Designer writes about her readings of a space designed for an education that has much to learn from.

For children, a place for play holds special importance, and in the changing paradigms of education, outdoor learning has become just as important as learning inside the classroom. Continue reading SITE-VISIT: HILLTOP SCHOOL BY DesignAware

[IN]SIDE: Ratan J. Batliboi on Designing Exhibitions

In conversation with Ratan Batliboi, Principal, Ratan J. Batliboi Consultants, we discuss exhibition design as a discipline and an area of his creative endeavour, drawing from his exhaustive portfolio in design of an array of temporary and permanent exhibitions and his insight into the processes that work on the front and back-end of the experience.

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ARCHITECTURAL EDUCATION: A ROAD MAP TO REFORM

In a curated series on archival texts, views, discussions and comments on the state of architecture and design education in India, Prem Chandavarkar assesses the state of architectural education and the role of the Council, the practice and the institution in an increasingly urban India- outlining his thoughts on an appropriate paradigm for an architecture school and the urgency for a competitive standard of excellence. 


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Brinda Somaya: Works & Continuities

Stories of intention, aspiration and imagination form a gently woven fabric of implicit and explicit meanings that often transcend into a collective reality. Architecture enables these stories. 

Narrated by Principal Architect of Somaya and Kalappa Consultants (SNK) Brinda Somaya, BRINDA SOMAYA: Works and Continuities is an inspiring autobiographical account of stories of a gratifying practice. Continue reading Brinda Somaya: Works & Continuities