Category Archives: Dialogues

Peoples Architecture Commonweal, Chennai

Towards an informed architecture and building practice.

The present day ‘modern’ distress inflicted by ‘innovation’ offers only a fleeting escape amidst architecture that cannot be distilled and built environments that cannot be differentiated. This yearning for a mature, viable society may be met by reclaiming lost responsibilities of unveiling the grammar of traditional practices. Exploring the scope for a radical reorientation of the profession, I recently spoke with Architect Sudhir Kumar to get an insight into the studio’s core concerns which find expression through architecture, research and civic engagement projects.

Based out of Chennai since 1991, Peoples Architecture Commonweal is a coalition of a small group of architects, led by Sudhir Kumar. The studio is invested in the exploration of cultural practices through insights offered by an evolutionary approach towards architecture. Guided by the study of instinctual older approaches to planning, design, and building that are free from the restraint of technological trends, architecture is seen as a means to build more equitable communities by supporting craft and other livelihoods embedded in their local contexts. Continue reading Peoples Architecture Commonweal, Chennai

Drawing to Find Out [03]: Ajit Rao

In conversation with Ajit Rao on his work and insights on drawings, skill and education. 

Architect, Animator and Artist, Ajit Rao started his career working with the renowned Indian architect B V Doshi. Ajit’s added passion for the art of cartooning soon developed into a journey exploring diverse skills in varied mediums of expression and communication. An intuitive teacher, he has headed training programs at leading animation studios and has been a visiting faculty at premier design and architecture institutes in India. Presently Ajit has set up a studio in Lonavala, endeavouring to bring these diverse resources to the service of various aspects of Indian cultural expressions. Continue reading Drawing to Find Out [03]: Ajit Rao

In Conversation with Shilo Shiv Suleman & Heather Stewart

By Anusha Narayanan

A visual artist and designer who has transcended into art for social good and tech-based installations, from illustrations for children’s books, Shilo Shiv Suleman is an experimental feminist and an independent voice, representing not only herself, but other innovators and women around the globe. In an afternoon at Leopold, Anusha Narayanan got the chance to catch up with her and talk about biofeed installations.

Shilo Feature image

Art is an external expression of internal discoveries: thoughts, dreams, advocacies and emotions of artists. Art in the ‘truly public’ domain is a rarity in India, but with the street art movement catalysed by the St+ART India, and independent artists such as Shilo Shiv Suleman, Anpu, Harshavardhan Kadam and more, art seems to be getting democratised. Yet as the quality of public artistic interventions at open festivals such as the Kala Ghoda Festival consistently and drastically drops, there is no room for quiet contemplation. In this quicksand, last year, I found Shilo’s work on bio-feed installations, an oasis in a desert. Continue reading In Conversation with Shilo Shiv Suleman & Heather Stewart

Architects on Architecture: Bijoy Ramachandran

In this edition of ‘Architects on Architecture’ series, we speak with Bijoy Ramachandran of Hundredhands about practice, the books he likes and the works and thoughts that he admires and that influence him. 


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Architects on Architecture: Dr Brinda Somaya

In the first episode of our ‘Architects on Architecture’ series, we discuss the fundamental ideas that helped shape one of the most versatile practices in India in conversation with Dr Brinda Somaya, Somaya & Kalappa Consultants, Mumbai.

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Young Weavers’ Training Centre: Young Citizens

Melbourne and Mumbai-based practice Young Citizens curates the transition of a derelict bus shelter into a training centre for WomenWeave with a hands-on engagement with the process, context and the users. Sian Pascale, Founder of Young Citizens elaborates on her ideas and experiences with the project in an interview accompanying the feature.

IMG_3769
A simple space furbished with locally-sourced materials and textures conducive to the needs of the users.

Continue reading Young Weavers’ Training Centre: Young Citizens

Balkrishna Doshi-Peter Rich: An Encounter

On March 16, 2013, Peter Rich met Balkrishna Doshi at his house. Here is the interaction that followed.

Transcript:
Balkrishna Doshi: BD
Peter Rich: PR

BD: Corbusier talked to him in a different way. So then they came to talking about housing but housing was still was never considered as architecture. Because it never has that scale neither it had the prominence and of course, not the style. Because technology, the kind of articulation, the use of space, in the public realm is very different from private realm. Some are ritualistic, some are non-ritualistic; Private realm as no ritual.

PR: Yeah, yeah.

Continue reading Balkrishna Doshi-Peter Rich: An Encounter