By reading into the cultural environment of the sixties and seventies, and the rise of a range of affinities in architecture that emerged in the wake of Independence in India, two pictorial essays by Stefanie Zoche and Sabine Haubitz document a part of a larger cultural zeitgeist. The essays focusing on the essentialised photographs of facades of single screen movie theatres and churches in South India propose a common ground – an enquiry into what they refer to as ‘Hybrid Modernism’.
Our Lady of Miracles, Kochi
In India, architecture evolves in a palimpsestic disposition, especially in the rurban areas. Historical, provincial, aspirational layers exist in this pluralistic built landscape. The development of modern architecture in India succeeding the influences of international style made a gradual headway from 1920s and -30s and pronouncedly was acknowledged with Le Corbusier’s vision for Chandigarh. While post-independence architecture in India is largely attributed to modern architecture, it belongs to perhaps only a fraction of the built landscape. Architecture in the remaining paradigm is countered by a gentler transition, more self-conscious and self-referential, consolidated socially and culturally. Familiar and immediate frames of references are appropriated and contextualised at a local level. Moreover, it is not homogeneous across the country but exists in complex crossovers.
Continue reading Portraiture: ‘Movie Theaters’ and ‘Churches’
A public initiative, Houses of Mylapore intends to generate interest and involvement of the community to harbour an awareness about the preservation of a transient past – the cultural and architectural ethos of Mylapore – through Heritage Walks, installations, souvenirs and other activities.
“The challenge here,” explains Tahaer Zoyab of Chennai-based Triple O Studio, one of the co-founders of the Houses of Mylapore initiative in a televised interview, “is that not too many people associate an individual house as a heritage building so that is a notion that we have been trying to change through this project itself.”
Since November 2015, Tahaer and his partner, Anupriya Subbian have directed a part of their studio’s efforts along with several other volunteers to an ongoing endeavour of documenting and thereby, preserving the eclectic suburban fabric of Mylapore.
Continue reading Houses of Mylapore
by Radhika Pandit
A photo-essay that extends the sublime quality of spaces of monumental and religious significance in Palitana – The City of Temples, the sanctimonious temple complex in Gujarat and tirtha for pilgrims in the Jain community.
Jain temples are called as derasaras. This is world’s only mountain that has 900 temples. These temples are also called Tucks. According to Jainism, since ancient times Palitana has been a major site of salvation and nirvana of Jain saints and sages. Palitana temples and whole mountain are considered the most sacred pilgrimage place (tirtha) by the Jain community, and it is the world’s largest Temple Complex. Continue reading Palitana [The City of Temples]: Radhika Pandit
Remnants of a Fast Disappearing Way of Life
A photo-narrative by Sneha Parthasarathy of the quintessential Indian village culture, lifestyle and architecture, against the backdrop of the Godavari River Festival.
The Pushkaras, occurring annually, are river festivals celebrating in a cyclic manner each of the 12 important holy rivers of India. This year was that of the river Godavari and was said to be a ‘Maha Pushkara’ – occurring once every 144 years. The 12 day festival saw over 11 crore devotees, from Telangana-Andhra region rush to the river banks of Godavari to take the emancipating dip and pray for departed souls of their loved ones. There is something very powerful and beautiful about belief but mass hysteria and hype is worrying. Worrying because it leads to herd mentality; when you do something not because you deeply believe in it but because you do not want to be left out. Continue reading Dharmapuri
By Viplav Sahu
Caves, Lake and the Life of People: Badami, a living Heritage City, has many faces one can explore here every day. The life in the town changes significantly from morning to evening.
18-armed Dancing Shiva Sculpture situated at entrance of Cave no. 1 representing 18 Dance forms.
Ceiling carved out with the Swastika motif in Cave no. 2
Sculptures on the right wall of Cave no 2.
Inside view of Cave no. 3.
View of the panel on the right side of Cave no. 3 showing Trivikarma.
Beautifully carved Cave no. 3 where the columns are carved in such a way that they induce a feeling of motion.
An artist sitting and trying to capture the sculpture through his painting.
Traces of cave paintings which are still found in Cave No. 3
Badami is located in the northern Karnataka. The region is characterised by a hilly terrain comprising of steep cliffs and valleys. The present town of Badami which was also known as Vatapi in ancient times was the capital of the Early Chalukyas in 6th to 8th century AD. Continue reading Badami…the capital of Vatapi Chalukyan Kings