Submitted by Tanya Khanna
Recapitulation: Transects Through The Interstices Of Architecture
India Architecture News - May 8, 2019 - 01:18 1212 views
How do the undercurrents of societal change impact the discipline of Architecture? Held on 27th March 2019, at the India Habitat Centre, New Delhi, the 44th Talk in the Series focussed on the experiences and observations of a practitioner in the interstitial spaces of Architecture – the non-built historical, social, and cultural landscape that shapes our built environment.
The key speaker of the event was Madhav Raman - architect, urbanist and co-founder of Anagram Architects. Describing his career of 19 years, Raman took the audience through an anecdotal summation of his work, and the various factors that have shaped it. He then addressed the larger picture, talking about globalisation and the morphosis of media, remarking “Globalisation has gone through a cycle. The networks that created globalisation do not exist anymore, what remains of them are vestiges. We are now post-globalised, hyper-connected and climate changed." Contrasting this rapid change with preserved pockets of built heritage, he described the historicity of Shahjahanabad in Old Delhi as an example of a largely unchanged urban fabric. Raman took the audience on a journey through the eras of colonialism, post-independence and liberalization, providing a foil for his assertion that architectural practice only caters to 3% of the populace, leaving the rest unimpacted by the discipline.
Bridging the gap between the colonial underpinnings of the profession and the current socio-cultural setting, Raman compared the peer-to-peer accessibility of crypto-currencies to current business models in the construction world as a parting note, noting the disconnect in larger communities, and stressing upon the need for a new social and inclusive social paradigm.
About Architecture and Society Talk Series
'Architecture and Society' talk series is a monthly forum organised by Greha in collaboration with Epistle Communications - at the India Habitat Centre. Each month, the forum invites architects, urban practitioners, academicians and research scholars from the entire country to talk about their work. The intent of the forum is to gather students, practitioners and the public of Delhi in one space where discussions on the future of the built environment in India can take place.
Since its inception in 1974, Greha has concentrated on the growth of knowledge in the field of environmental development, habitat design and architecture. The thrust of Greha's efforts have been towards addressing issues of the majority of the population; the focus was the marginalised people in rural and urban settlements; the vehicle was developing knowledge and methodologies concerning settlement systems more suited to our history and cultural context.
The founder members, during the early stages of their professional careers, would meet periodically to engage with majority concerns, away from the routine of the practice.
These concerns led them towards working with the poor and marginalised people in Indian society and eventually to the establishment of a school of habitat studies.
Greha registered in 1986 as a non-government, not for profit society, with the aim of generating a body of ideas, involving diverse professional talent and promoting expert contribution in development projects undertaken by public agencies.
About Epistle Communications
Epistle is a communication consultancy providing bespoke, strategic consulting services for architecture, design, planning and allied disciplines.
Top image courtesy of Greha
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