Compilation: Art Deco in Mumbai

“Art deco, or deco, is an eclectic artistic and design style that began in Paris in the 1920s and flourished internationally throughout the 1930s, into the World War II era. Art deco’s linear symmetry was a distinct departure from the flowing asymmetrical organic curves of its predecessor style art nouveau; it embraced influences from many different styles of the early twentieth century,including neoclassical, constructivism, cubism, modernism and futurism and drew inspiration from ancient Egyptian and Aztec forms. Although many design movements have political or philosophical beginnings or intentions, art deco was purely decorative.”

Marine Drive. The Art Deco epicenter in Mumbai. (Source: unknown)

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Haveli Le Prince Nadine or Angrez ki Haveli in Fatehpur Rajasthan

In 1999 French artist Nadine Le Prince bought a 19th-century haveli in Fatehpur and, with the help of Dinesh Dhabhai of Mandawa Haveli, spent the next year locating the right artisans, paints, and methods of restoring it. Now called Haveli Nadine (though locals call it Angrez ki Haveli — Englishwoman’s haveli), it’s been converted into a cultural center that’s aimed at bringing together the art of Rajasthani with that of foreign artists, and preserving the art forms of Shekhawati. When rain and humidity damaged her newly restored haveli in 2003, Nadine waited for the walls to dry up, and began restoration work in earnest again. Serious art lovers should make an effort to stop here, particularly when an exhibition is on; you can discover Rajasthan through paintings or sculptures not available in any of the regular tourist centers. Either way, touring this gorgeous, painstakingly restored haveli is one way you can visualize what this region’s art might have looked like in its heyday. It’s generally open between 8am and 7pm each day, but call to check (tel. 01571/23-3024; nadine.leprince@free.fr; Rs 100 admission).

Source: Frommers (text) and Skyscraper City (images)

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Conference on Contemporary Architecture – Beyond Corbusierism >> 14-16, Oct 2011 in Chandigarh

Le Corbusier’s architectural works in India added a new dimension to the Indian experience about sixty years ago. He radically transformed the status of the architectural profession and meaning of architecture for the Indian architects. His work and philosophy left an indelible mark on the footprints of the country’s Continue reading

Indian Vernacular Houses around Bangalore

Architects: R.L. Kumar, Center for Vernacular Architecture
Resources: Born of this Land, Breaking Conventional Barriers.

Vernacular Architecture is a branch of architecture which deals with using minimal amounts of natural building materials, using local skills, based on old architectural designs and sensitive to local culture. These designs are not universal and are specific to certain regions. “The basic elements of a modern building like cement, steel, glass, ceramic, plastic, synthetic fiber are not connected to nature in the same way mud, brick, lime, thatch, timber and grass are“, says Architect R.L. Kumar. He is an Aga Khan award for Architecture nominee known for his pioneering work in this field of architecture.

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The Park Hotel, Hyderabad

© Pallon Daruwala

ArchitectSkidmore, Owings and Merill LLP
Completion Year: 2010
Project Area: 531,550 sq. ft.
Building Height: 30 m
As seen onEvolo.usSOM

Hyderabad is known as the city of gems and jewels, there are endless lanes of jewelry bazaar and gem stores. Hyderabad, which was ruled over by several family dynasties, is not new to legends of treasures.

When Skidmore, Owings and Merill LLP (SOM) were approached to design the hotel, they decided to keep the gems and jewel theme for the hotel. The white skin of the hotel representing fabrics with tears and perforations which is almost like a embroidery of gems on the fabric. The perforations allow light to pass through and looks like blue sapphires.

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Mill Owners’ Association Building, Ahmedabad

Brutalistic Surface of the building has lead to moss growth on the surface (front facade)
Front Facade – Brutalistic Surface of the building has lead to moss growth on the surface (Mimoa.eu)

ArchitectLe Corbusier 
Year of Completion: 1954
Image SourcesFlickr user DaveybotMimoa.eu and Flickr user Spackle

Le Corbusier is an iconic architect and continuing source of inspiration to everyone. He is the architect of not only many buildings but also India’s most well planned city, Chandigarh. His ideas were wildly innovative and never thought of before. He was invited by then Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru to design Chandigarh in 1951, but he was also commissioned to design a few buildings such as Ahmedabad Museum. Here is the commentary for one his designs in Ahmedabad, the Mill Owner’s Association Building.

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House in Rishikesh, Uttarakhand

© Sebastian Zachariah

ArchitectRajiv Saini + Associates
First Seen onDezeen Magazine
PhotographerSebastian Zachariah
Area: 640 Sq. mt.

This is a very beautiful location (I am very sure that sites such as these are very rare to come by and it is big too!) and very bold design. The blue glass facade reflects the mountains and the sky around the house and blends in nicely with the background. It gives the viewer the opportunity to enjoy the house and the invisible surroundings at the same time.

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The Secretariat (Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly), Chennai

Elevation of the Main Courtyard Building

Architectsgmp Architekten von Gerken, Marg und Partner, Berlin
Client: Public Works Department, Tamil Nadu Government
Approximate Area: 180,000 sq. mt.

Those of you who have not visited Chennai in a while might be surprised to see a huge monolithic building better known as the Secretariat. It was meant to be the local government’s seat of power, but it will now be utilised as Multi-speciality Hospital and a Medical College.

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