Category Archives: Review

In Focus: The Architecture of Didi Contractor

Resonating with the mindfulness of architect Didi Contractor’s approach to her work and life, Joginder Singh’s book ‘An Adobe Revival – Didi Contractor’s Architecture’ and the documentary ‘Didi Contractor – Marrying the Earth to the Building’ by Steffi Giaracuni, together encapsulate the unique sensibility with which Didi diligently continues to pursue an architecture that is embedded in a holistic sensorial experience.

The film unassumingly opens with the architect seated at her drawing board, sketching while deep in thought in the comfort of her warm mud abode amidst the stunning views of the Kangra Valley. Born to Expressionist Painters associated with the Bauhaus group of the 1920s, Didi pursued an education in art although keenly drawn towards architecture and design. Having moved to the hills, she set up a practice much later in life with a core ideology rooted in the understanding of local material and construction techniques. Continue reading In Focus: The Architecture of Didi Contractor

The Structure: Works of Mahendra Raj

‘The Structure: Works of Mahendra Raj‘ is an elaborate account of the significant career of one of the predominant structural designers of India – through an archive of images, drawings and writings on the prolific structures envisioned by Mahendra Raj.

Book Cover: View of the Hidon River Mills roof, Gaziabad.

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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

Nostalgia for the Future: A Film by Avijit Mukul Kishore and Rohan Shivkumar

Exploring temporal movements of a banal urbanity through a cinematic experience- composed of vivid historical footage interwoven into the everyday hustle in the life of a modern Indian citizen; the film attempts to reflect on modernity in space and time in a manner that is true to a lived experience.

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CHANDIGARH REVEALED: LE CORBUSIER’S CITY TODAY | PHOTOGRAPHS AND TEXT BY SHAUN FYNN

Almost 60 years since its inception, Shaun Fynn takes his lens deep into the streets of Chandigarh capturing how Le Corbusier’s experiment dwells today in the urban context, in his book Chandigarh Revealed: Le Corbusier’s city today. Continue reading CHANDIGARH REVEALED: LE CORBUSIER’S CITY TODAY | PHOTOGRAPHS AND TEXT BY SHAUN FYNN

CONSERVING ARCHITECTURE BY KULBHUSHAN JAIN [Ed]

With a collection of essays on preserving our architectural heritage, Kulbhushan Jain attempts to spark the ever-passive conversation on conservation practices in India: the good, the bad and the ignored parts of it; in his recent work titled- ‘Conserving Architecture’. The compendium discusses the multifarious approaches that are needed to address the grey area between heritage and modernity, the need to find a common ground between the two. Continue reading CONSERVING ARCHITECTURE BY KULBHUSHAN JAIN [Ed]

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

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

DIALOGUES with Indian Master Architects: Narendra Dengle

Conceived, conducted and edited by Narendra Dengle

Encompassing a staggering 50 years of architectural practice across seven Indian Master Architects, the book engages in profound discussions that one can go back to as learnings. Presenting them as multi-faceted personalities, it captures each of their intriguing journeys – as aspiring students of architecture to inspiring architects who laid the architectural touchstone of an Independent India.

The book is a rare compilation of intimate conversations conducted over a period of seven years with seven of India’s most senior Architects – Achyut Kanvinde, Raj Rewal, Anant Raje, Hasmukh Patel, B V Doshi, Uttam C Jain and Charles Correa. Each of these dialogues is curated by author – conductor Narendra Dengle with a live audience to facilitate participation from students, practitioners, and academics from architecture and other diverse disciplines. This he intended would commence discussions on a number of aspects – social, historical, and interdisciplinary.

Continue reading DIALOGUES with Indian Master Architects: Narendra Dengle