Category Archives: Architecture

What is Heritage? – Prem Chandavarkar

In context of the recent demolition of the Hall Of Nations, Prem Chandavarkar observes that the lacuna in understanding the definition and the meaning of heritage will lead to the loss of many valuable buildings that belong to our recent past.


A couple of weeks ago, the Hall of Nations, an exhibition hall in Pragati Maidan in New Delhi, was demolished to make way for a new convention and exhibition centre. The building was a rare example in the world, and the only one in India, of a space frame built in reinforced concrete.  Completed in 1972 and designed by architect Raj Rewal and structural engineer Mahendra Raj, it was widely recognised as one of the icons of a period of modern Indian architecture that started in the 1950s and continued till the 1980s. This was an era that centred on India’s desire that the potential of her newly won freedom should offer the country a new modernity, and the cutting-edge architecture of that time, produced by the first generation of post-independence architects, was a significant and powerful representation of this quest. Continue reading What is Heritage? – Prem Chandavarkar

Sahyadri School : Khushru Irani Design Studio, Pune

Amidst an overwhelming landscape of the Sahyadri range of Maharashtra nestles the Sahyadri School. Designed by Pune-based Khushru Irani Design Studio, the architecture is an ensemble of spaces sewn together with tactful geometry and generous circulation.

Situated on a remote site, the school was established as a residential campus in 1996 for students from class four to ten. The educational philosophy of the school has its roots in the profound teachings of J. Krishnamurti who envisioned a space of learning free from obstacles, close to nature. A proposed extension of the school to include class eleven and twelve presented itself with an opportunity to express the workings of two synergised design philosophies through architecture.

Panorama of the Residential Block

Continue reading Sahyadri School : Khushru Irani Design Studio, Pune

Indigo Architects: Mausami and Uday Andhare

Drawing to Find Out [04]

For Uday and Mausami Andhare, the process of sketching and drawing by hand pivots the design process as they work through the layers of an often messy path to architectural resolution. Looking through a cross-section of the rich visual material produced as a result, we attempt to capture the many purposes of drawing at Indigo Architects.

Continue reading Indigo Architects: Mausami and Uday Andhare

The Architecture of Hasmukh C. Patel : Selected Projects 1963-2003

With a career spanning four decades and a self-made legacy of some of the most significant works of Independent India, Hasmukh C. Patel’s architecture speaks volumes about the architect he embodies and the grit he possesses. A narrative of his personal and professional journey – the book showcases select 51 projects that summarise Patel’s architectural idiom in its entirety.

Book Cover: Looking between the expressed columns and the main wall of the front facade while entering the Newman Hall in Ahmedabad,1963
Book Cover: Looking between the expressed columns and the main wall of the front facade while entering the Newman Hall in Ahmedabad,1963

“…………………The human being is at the centre of my creative efforts…………………This is the only thing I understand and the only thing I practice.” – Hasmukh Patel Continue reading The Architecture of Hasmukh C. Patel : Selected Projects 1963-2003

M.G.A.H.V. Student and Faculty Housing : MO-OF Architects

Set against the vast, arid landscape of Wardha, the Mahatma Gandhi Antarrashtriya Hindi Vishwavidyalay [M.G.A.H.V.] Student and Faculty Housing does not flaunt its existence, despite a seemingly overwhelming scale. Designed by the Mumbai-based MO-OF Architects, the project is an attempt at a ‘non-design’ process in which “architecture is no longer either implicitly or explicitly seen as a dominant system, but rather simply as one of the cultural systems.”

Masterplan
Master Plan

Amidst central plains of India, lies the inconspicuous town of Wardha – among the most historically significant centres of the Indian Independence Movement and Gandhi’s avant-garde socio-educational experiments. In this spirit, it nurtures the growth of the Mahatma Gandhi Antarrashtriya Hindi Vishwavidyalay [M.G.A.H.V.], established to globally promote and develop Hindi language and literature. Continue reading M.G.A.H.V. Student and Faculty Housing : MO-OF Architects

The Atelier: Biome Environmental Solutions

Inspired by an effectual educational approach, The Atelier by Bengaluru-based Biome Environmental Solutions embodies a conscious architecture which stems from the understanding that, “The permanence of a building may no longer be a prerequisite in its design.……it is necessary to allow material recovery and recycling, or reconstruct the same building elsewhere – anything but create debris that will occupy landfills.” 

It is well known that children in their formative years are responsive to their everyday surroundings, experiences, and routines. Borrowing from this, The Reggio Emilia Approach focuses on the centrality of the hundred languages of children wherein they require utmost freedom in order to value the infinite resources of their hands, eyes, and ears and of forms, materials, sounds, and colours. Designed by Bengaluru’s Biome Environmental Solutions, this pre-school is an example of a sustainable building whose design submits to the enhancement of a sensorial, exploratory learning experience. Continue reading The Atelier: Biome Environmental Solutions

LafargeHolcim Awards 2016/2017

What: The LafargeHolcim Awards is one of the most significant global competition in sustainable design. Organized by the LafargeHolcim Foundation for Sustainable Construction, the competition identifies the ideas with the highest potential to tackle today’s challenges to increasing urbanization and to improve quality of life.

The competition is open for projects in architecture, building and civil engineering, landscape and urban design, materials, products and construction technologies that contribute to the five “target issues” for sustainable construction. The competition has two categories with different requirements: Continue reading LafargeHolcim Awards 2016/2017

Christopher Benninger: Architecture for Modern India

A monograph on the work of Prof. Christopher Charles Benninger chronicles buildings that express his transition from an architect in India to an Indian Architect outlining and emphasising on the core values of his work and the changing nature of the context that it negotiates with.

A 1972 Photograph shows Christopher Benninger with Balkrishna Doshi on the CEPT Campus, Ahmedabad.
A 1972 Photograph Shows Christopher Benninger with Balkrishna Doshi on the CEPT Campus.

Continue reading Christopher Benninger: Architecture for Modern India

Boombay: From Precincts to Sprawl : Kamu Iyer

As a memoir-cum-historical and cultural repository, Boombay: From Precincts to Sprawl by Kamu Iyer captures the zeitgeist of an era in Mumbai from 1940s to the present.  

Boombay
Cover

“This book is different. Kamu Iyer is an architect who has lived in Mumbai all his life. He is observant, analytical and visual. He understands how people use spaces – especially public spaces. And he has a sense of History.” writes Charles Correa in his foreword to Boombay. Continue reading Boombay: From Precincts to Sprawl : Kamu Iyer

Design.I.Y HOUSING: S+PS Architects

The Design.I.Y HOUSING project offers a refreshing perspective to the monotony that otherwise defines contemporary commercial housing. In the context of Lonavala, this project by S+PS Architects proposes an alternative approach wherein the preferences of the inhabitants become integral to the development of architecture and essential to the richness of design. Continue reading Design.I.Y HOUSING: S+PS Architects