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July - August 2011 VOL. 1 • ISSUE 5 • `80



„Humanity has to evolve sustainable paradigms on this earth which is finite‰

A Paprika Media presentation


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N G I S E D M A T R I X Publisher Managing Director Editor-In-Chief

: : :

Karan Jhunjhunwala Manohar Jhunjhunwala Babita Krishnan babitakrishnan@designm

EDITORIAL Content Editor


Editor CP Asst. Editor CP Writers Junior Writer Trainee Writer

: : : : :

Savitha Hira savithahira@designmatri Div ya Mishra Priyanka Mathur dinho, Tanya Siqueira, Varun Go Sharanya Subramaniyan Sheena D’Lima

er Brand & Strategy Manag Finance Controller Head-Administration

: : :

Riddhi Walia Manjari Ved Maria Fernandes









Sameer Adhikari .co mumbai@designmatrix off Shr hal Vis o kolkata@designmatrix.c Ashok Bajaj Abhishek P. Agrawal Nallari Rupana Reddy Sheetal Jain o chennai@designmatrix.c T. Jayakrishnan o cochin@designmatrix.c









ART Art Director Designing

: :

Digital Imaging Production

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Chief Operating Officer




Prem Mishra Kishore Dadlaney Jayendra Ved Shalini Sawant subscription@designma Rahul Das esh Gajjar, Devang H Makwana, Brij ve dha Mo jan ran Chitta Devang H Makwana sh Salvi, Harish Suvarna, Mange Sandeep Borkar Vishwanath Shanbhag vishwanath@paprikame at Raw h Rajnis m Smiti Kanodia m

., of MRJ Creations Pvt.Ltd Jhunjhunwala on behalf ia an ,Ind Kar 057 by ed 400 ai lish mb Pub Mu ), Printed and rwal Market, Vile Parle(E ai Aga mb g, Mu ldin ), Bui (W p ‘C’ al ndu 201 Shyam Kam Mandir Road, Bha India Pvt. Ltd., 6 Dat ta ‘C’ Building, and Printed at Print House at MRJ Creations Pvt. Ltd., 201 Shyam Kamal n lished ia. Editor: Babita Krishna 400 078,India and Pub ), Mumbai 400 057, Ind le(E Par Vile 2 DESIGN MATRIX • JULY-AUGUST 2011 t, rke Ma l Agarwa


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e have all grown up getting our hands dirty with mud – whether it was mud pies or rolling in a wet football field, there is a bit of mud-memory in all of us. Imagine mud becoming central to your profession! It has for

Ar. Revathi Kamath. Some years ago, my very first interaction with her ended with her stating “You can’t comprehend what I mean till you experience it personally.” The reference was to her home – kachchi kothi. Today, I agree with her. It was almost an ethereal experience as I walked on the roof garden (and I mean grass on a slanting roof with no railings) with her husband Ar. Vasant Kamath and feasted my eyes on the verdant surrounds. Spending the entire day with her helped me understand and appreciate her ideas and efforts towards a more sustainable environment that leads to repose. Most creative people find repose in their work and that is the reason they excel at it. Hence, the conception of the Design Matrix-Ultratech Paints Excellence Awards – a competition for interior design excellence in different categories that will be adjudged by the stalwarts of the industry. Even as you read this, we are preparing to send out mails inviting you to participate. Contact us at for more information. Meanwhile, enjoy another assiduously put together issue and don’t forget to share your views. I would like to sign off by quoting a proverb that came to mind while writing the cover story: Only when the last tree has died and the last river poisoned and the last fish been caught will we realise we cannot eat money.


Babita Krishnan

Now follow us on Partners: Location: Le Sutra; Jewellery: Anmol Jewellers; Make-up & Hair: Rudra Spa


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CON TEN TS Design Matrix_July-Aug11.indb 8

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My space


SUSTAINABILITY Design Consultant, Sharmistha Banerjee recapitulates her six-month journey that led to creating an innovative harvesting solution to extract cancer chemotherapy drug (taxoid) from taxus trees.


Words & Images: Sharmistha Banerjee


ave you ever noticed the fine fragrance near a bunch of pine trees after a thunderstorm? It was March of 2010 when I did, while contemplating my Masters Thesis project at Technical University of

Delft in The Netherlands. As I enquired, I got to know about two scientists (Marijnissen and Roos), who inspired by this phenomenon, attempted to induce an artificial electric field (artificial thunderstorm scenario) around a taxus tree and managed to capture some white crystalline sprays of taxoid on their electrode. Unfortunately, due to the crude nature of the set-up, the leaves of the tree would touch the electrode, causing sparks, and would consequently burn out. Subsequently, they had been looking for someone to refine this possibly non-destructive (to the tree) technique and create an economically viable harvesting solution. I knew that taxoids are a group of very highly-priced cancer chemotherapy drugs. That they could be harvested artificially, was a revelation. I was told that this technique might phenomenally reduce the cost of these drugs; and I just could not stop myself from meeting these scientists for greater details. My job started with how this crude set-up could be converted into a commercially viable harvester. 58 DESIGN MATRIX • JULY-AUGUST 2011




• Cover featuring: Revathi Kamath • Photograph by: Sameer Chawda • Location: Delhi

COVER STORY Discover Revathi Kamath, the creator of timeless structures who is deeply connected to Earth Pg 14

ROVING EYE This one is for the motor enthusiast – celebrating 125 years of the automobile industry with a visit to Automobile City Pg 26

AR. AAMCHER Ar. Nitin Killawala laments the monstrosities of Mumbai – the skywalks Pg 32

CREATIVE IDEAS Park Associati, Milan, realizes the Electrolux dream project of an itinerant restaurant that is currently touring high profile locales in Europe Pg 34


DESIGN ASPECT Simple wooden slats make a compelling façade element in typologically-driven design in Zurich & unveiling the un-store of ‘delightenment’ at Pune Pg 50

MY SPACE A sustainable and cost-friendly approach to chemotherapy is being researched. Sharmishtha Banerjee on her work Pg 58

Thomas Balsley enriches the urban environs with a landscaped oasis in the middle of Times Square, New York Pg 82

PHOTO-FEATURE The magic of chiaroscuro in everyday recall. Photo-journalist Cleo at her len’s best Pg 84

INFRASTRUCTURE DESIGN Raebarelli in Uttar Pradesh is the next big address for state-of-the-art sports facilities dedicated to India’s rural segment Pg 94



Kirtana Krishnan explores multiple facets in the realm of art with her peculiar brand of artistry Pg 62


ARCHITECTURE The serene aura of the Drepung Loseling Monastery echoes its minimal architectural interference in the forests of Mundgod Pg 66


Chocolate trimmings that tantalize Pg 100

The Demon God in full form – Ravana – the room for the self indulgent at Le Sutra Pg 102

TECH DIARY With an eye on the morrow, technology is on an all-time high with the new Tata Pixel Pg 108

Design Consultant Sarabjit Singh’s take on hospitality trends Pg 40

Statistical fingers get agile on the drawing table – a chartered accountant turns interior designer Pg 72





Bosco Graphic Co. design the perfect signage to Calatrava’s architecture in Spain Pg 44

Down memory lane with Shri V A Mali, the doyen of Indian Portrait Painting, who celebrates his birth centenary this year Pg 77

Information and news from the design field: Art Review; Zaha Hadid’s new products; & Events Pg 119

All the news from the market Pg 113


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May - June 2011 VOL. 1 • ISSUE 4 • `80




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Each issue, you have the chance to win a special gift courtesy

We would love to have your views, comments and/or suggestions on what you would like to see or read in our pages. Please email to: or write to Design Matrix, MRJ Creations Pvt. Ltd., C-201 Shyam Kamal Agarwal Market, Vile Parle (E), Mumbai-400 057 or Call on 022-26187132.


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I have been following your magazine from the

keep in touch and send on anything that I

very first issue. I would like to complement

think may be of interest to you.

Design Matrix for not just improving with each

Ben Rousseau,

issue, but doing so with quantum leaps. Look-

Creative Director, Rousseau Design Ltd, London

ing forward to more interesting reads with the

I love the magazine. The article looks very

future issues.                     S.N. Singh, Interior designer, Pune

good and I am very pleased with your writing about Sonic Shadows.

Bill Fontana, The magazine truly is international in its look

sound sculptor, San Francisco, CA

and feel. I like the unexpected content of

Lovely magazine! Very very appealing! Love-

Design Matrix. Mamta Naik,

ly photographs too, feel as though you are

Interior designer, Mumbai

in it. Like the quality of writing. Really good. Keep up the good work team, Design Matrix. I am glad I subscribed.


Ritu Chand,

I like the varied content as it keeps one inter-


ested at a fast pace. I really loved the photo feature on the chairs. Not only was it visually

This issue is just great and full of the ‘wow’

stunning but very well presented too. I did not

factor. Thank you for sending me this entire

know that we could source them in India and

issue on the web. So easy to read, as well as

am picking some for one of my clients. Thanks


for the information. I feel that you need more

Mohan Gulrajani,

mass appeal so need to promote the maga-


zine more. And yes, it is new and catching up so don’t compromise on quality and content.

The May-June issue of Design Matrix has

In fact, that is your USP. Best of luck.

some really interesting features. This issue

Bhavya Kenkare,

looks better than the previous one. Wishing

Architect, Mumbai

you utmost success.

Anupam Chakraborty, Congratulations again for such a creative


magazine! Sunil Patil & Associates,

Heartiest congratulations for such a won-

Architects & interior designers, Pune 

derful magazine. I really love the concept of the cover, which makes Design Matrix stand

Thank you very much for featuring our proj-

out from its counterparts.

ect. It is beautifully laid out and well written.

Puja Singh Nahar,

Great magazine by the way! I would love to

Architect, Nahar Projects, Mumbai


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NATURALLY! For some people, being sustainable is a profession; for others it is a way of life. She is an architect of very strong convictions without being apologetic; her buildings are as ecological as they are timeless. We discover Revathi Kamath, the person behind the professional, who not just practices sustainable architecture, but lives it too. Words: Babita Krishnan; Images: Sameer Chawda & (projects) courtesy Kamath Design Studio

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Cover story JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 15

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Babita Krishnan: You live so far from the city!

RK: Oh all the time. I have done a home for Nandita, a friend

Revathi Kamath: Yes, isn’t it marvelous. You are surrounded

and client, which follows the same ethos. There is another home

by this forest; there is no sound of vehicles to disturb the peace

in Hartola, near Nainital that we are working on. Have also imple-

or concrete jungle to distort the view. The only sounds you hear

mented this in the conservation of the Ahilyabai Holkar Fort, where

are the birds, peacocks in particular, frogs, insects, etc. some of the

the owners were reviving the traditional weavers and their craft, etc.

peacocks even answer back when I call! Our most recent guests are

And not just homes, we are working on several institutional projects

a band of monkeys – they swing from the trees, use my solar cooker

as well, which again use these kind of materials and they are beauti-

as a jhoola and peep into the house.With the monsoons coming in,

ful. Then there is the Tribal Art Museum in Bhopal that is underway.

it gets even better. BK: You seem totally occupied with this project. BK: Tell us about your home Kachchi Kothi.

RK: Right now I’m in the process of correcting the building. This

RK: The architecture of my home is totally an expression of who

museum is for a lot of people. For the city it would be a repository

we are. We have used bamboo, mud and stone from right here. The

of information on the tribes of Madhya Pradesh, but for me it is very

entire surrounding ecology is a part of this house. I have recently

important that the tribals participate in making and recording their

made a sketch that documents all the birds, creatures of the ground,

heritage. Then it becomes a place where people who don’t live in

the use of solar energy, the green roof, wind-catcher, materials used,

the tribal fold anymore can come and be proud of their culture. This

the waste generated and recycled, all the plants, tubewell, etc.

place will look like a haat that these people can identify with. What-

When you hear a frog croak in the pond, it means all is well with

ever I know, I want to take it further. We are evolving constantly

the eco-system here. Living with all this and appreciating it is the

while working with certain materials, which actually generate and

beginning of the desire to keep all of nature’s bounty safe. There is

sustain life. I love to use tribal motifs as they speak a universal lan-

no option but to be synchronous with all that is around you. While

guage. I am trying to get some of the locals to create them for me.

it is fine to do it for a house, it has to be done at the scale of the city and civilization.

BK: Is there a lot of people-involvement in all of your work? RK: You are dealing with the poorest of the poor. I like to involve

BK: But is there any other project like this? Do people actually ask for it?

these people whose only contribution to the economy is by being our daily-labour, because that is the only way of raising them to the JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 17

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level of being artisans. A man who has been laying bricks should derive the pleasure of creating patterns with bricks to make his job an art. Let us not forget, today the biggest issue is to take economy to the people. We have been doing it for the last 30 years. BK: This affinity with the tribals is a little unusual… RK: Not from where I’m standing! (Laughs) As a kid I lived with my grandparents. My grandfather was the chief engineer of Bhuvaneshwar and he had this architect friend because of whom we all became interested in architecture – works on progressive architecture was my reading material. My father was also a civil engineer, making these huge dams in remote areas. On my visits to him, I would watch the tribals dance, go to the haat bazaar, participate in it, visit the houses of weavers, and try to understand their culture; especially drawings. These drawings are inspirational and go beyond cultures and eras. I have always studied and tried to interpret them. BK: Your projects do not seem to follow the conventional symmetries… RK: As opposed to intrinsic architecture, if you have to understand the relationship between spaces and the visual compositions, then you have to be in the complex geometry. It is amazing how many spaces can be visualized through the mathematics of organization. Complex geometries and mathematics have to exist in spa18 DESIGN MATRIX • JULY-AUGUST 2011

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cial relationships. I like symmetrical structures; but only if they have a clean and detailed rhythm within the symmetry. BK: I see a pencil in your hand. RK: All architectural design happens in a non-digital mind space; so till the computer absorbs and maps data of mathematical rhythm or music of designs, for us it is only a tool for producing speedy drawings and fast transfer to the site. It is truly amazing how the work space has changed completely. But it is still a tool and there is no substitute to hand sketches. That is how the design process starts. It allows the intuitive manifestation of the idea without us even trying. BK: Is that how you create these huge spans – roofs or gateways, etc.? I’m specifically referring to the Jindal project. RK: All structures need to be analyzed. We create a mathematical drawing, which is then fed into the computer and analyzed. To relate to everything around you, think in terms of dimensional geometry and then use it in drawings. Naveen Jindal wanted us to do his house and also the township. We saw the site, ideated and looked at the whole town ecologically. The two most outstanding things there are the gateway and the auditorium. We used a lot of steel. I love steel as it is again a very ecological material. The gateway is very contemporary, minimal and very aspirational. My son helped me with that design. He is an architect and an installation artist in LA. With technology, you can work together from anywhere if you think alike. So he does these beautiful drawings that my engineers create here. Now he is helping me with the bamboo structure

I love to use tribal motifs as they speak a universal language

for the Bhopal Museum. BK: So he is establishing himself as an installation artist/architect. What about your daughter? RK: She is at Havard pursuing Evolutionary Biology. But my son is far from content. Creative people are restless. You have to be dissatisfied, yet you can’t lose your inner repose. There is an aggression in creative people and that shows in your work, this repose balances it. Restlessness has to be channelized in some direction. You have to visualize yourself within the system, not as a victim; but a manipulator, who is thinking in some direction. Even the smallest thought in the right direction becomes a part of the whole, I really believe in that. BK: Take me back in time to the very beginning… RK: Oh that was years ago (laughs)! I did my architecture from SPA Delhi. Working with Vastu Shilp Foundation, Anandgram came my way. The project was instigated by Rajeev Sethi, who wanted an architect to plan a permanent settlement for these nomadic performers and craftspeople. I was just about to start my professional life and I took it up as a challenge. It was my first project and I wanted to bring tradition into the fabric of design. We studied their existing lifestyle and then went about creating their dwellings according to their needs. It has been planned in such a way that their lifestyle JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 21

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My relationships with clients are for life. Ogaan was made years ago. but I’m still involved there in every minor change done.


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is not hindered, but the city can now come in and interact with

BK: Is a LEEDS certification equal to being sustainable?

them. There are facilities all around. We have retained the trees.

RK: That’s what people feel these days. But these ratings

Even today this drawing holds. It was greatly appreciated by every-

have been designed for the European and American standards.

one in the Capital including Rajeev Gandhi. After that, things just

It begins with the assumption that a building will have air condi-

started rolling and one project led to another.

tioning, use artificial lights, etc. and then the whole endeavour is on how to reduce it. But look at our old Mogul buildings and

BK: How do you manage to juggle the two – your approach to clients and your sustainable designing?

havelies. They would score way beyond the LEEDS point system. It is all about how you market it. I don’t have anything against

RK: First of all, being a woman in this field is not a very easy

technology, and I won’t throw LEEDS out of the window, but

task – on a daily basis. Every day you have one encounter that will

architects who are aware of these materials can make better

put you in your place and keep you grounded. Moreover, I am inter-

buildings than the kinds, which are blatantly showy. Let us say,

ested in the character of the structure that I design and build, if I go

for humanity, it is one step forward; so let it be. Design should

soliciting for work, how will I be able to do all this? (Laughs).

be functional; it should have all the attributes within the context of recyclability. Whether it can be rated or not doesn’t bother

BK: What if a client doesn’t agree with your choice of material?

me. If I use this I get some points; and use that to get points! I

RK: It happens. There are times when you do projects that are

am not giving an exam to clamour for points. I would rather use

not ecological but you take the client one step forward and share

something within the urban context, like reflective surface for

your architectural sensibility with them. Neeru Kumar’s home that

the roof that will bring down the heat quotient of my building.

we are currently working on uses the modernist idiom but it is

I prefer creating something that does not take anything away

my interpretation of that idiom. Each space, proportions, etc. are

from nature; rather, when it is destroyed or broken down, every-

discussed in detail. There is a complex speculation of the kind of

thing should seamlessly go back into where it came from. When

spaces required but there is a simple linearity to the whole home.

you breakdown my buildings, everything will be reused.

By comparison, in Nandita’s house there was a free flow of open and semi-open spaces, the compositions were like that. Compositions come through by understanding the sensibilities of the client. What helps is the desire of people to break out of the routine life.

BK: You are probably the biggest champion of mud as a building material. RK: There is a huge social stigma against mud especially in


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North India, because traditionally in a patriarchal system, the

ship changed hands, and it is all mud. You have to do it right. It

physical reality in something like buildings was a way of express-

irritates me when people write against mud as a construction

ing superiority over time. So something that is light and will

material. Just because you could not accomplish it since your

blend back after you are gone is not acceptable. It is not about

method was wrong, doesn’t mean it can’t be done. It depends

creating something that should stand for generations to come;

on your understanding of the material.

whether they want and like it or not, it should have the ability to blend back into its source and should not harm the environ-

BK: So what does sustainability mean to you?

ment. All over the world, the process of breaking and rebuilding

RK: It just is. I don’t think we have an option. You have to be

is continuous. So much is dumped into the landfills. So why can’t

sustainable whether you do it now or later – depends on your

we have it in our system to create in a way that even after 50 or

level of evolution. Humanity has to evolve sustainable para-

100 years, if we bring a structure down, it blends back into the

digms on this earth, which is finite. Infinity is within each one of

environment. Nandita’s home was built 30 years ago and it is still

us and that needs to be explored to understand the finite energy

going strong, though now someone else is using it as owner-

and material on the planet


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Roving eye


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FOR THE LOVE OF MACHINE Recounting an informative and awe-inspiring journey to Stuttgart – the automobile city. Words & Images: Anand & Madhura Katti


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e had arrived in South West

automobile museums of Mercedes-Benz

Germany to be a part of the

and Porsche are also built here.

celebrations of 125 years of

The interestingly architectured ‘Mer-

car manufacture and the formost on our

cedes-Benz Museum’ is a passion, tradition

itinerary was a visit to the Mercedes Benz museum. Stuttgart, state capital of Baden-Württemberg in Germany is like a pilgrim place for any autmobile enthusiast. It was here that Wilhelm Maybach and Gottlieb Daimler jointly invented one of the very first automobile engines. Karl Benz then designed the first car using that engine. It is also the

The Mercedes-Benz museum presents and documents history of the automobile and mystic of brand through 1,500 exciting exhibits on 9 different levels.

and innovation in this automobile city and is situated in front of the main MercedesBenz production premises. Opting for the individual audio tour, we found that the museum presents and documents history of the automobile and mystic of brand Mercedes-Benz through 1,500 exciting exhibits on 9 different levels. The main themes of the exhibition include legendary automo-

location of the main production plants of

biles, technology and research, adventure,

both Mercedes-Benz and Porsche. Befit-

myths and milestones in 125 years of the

tingly, two of the world’s most outstanding

Mercedes-Benz history. The story of auto-


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mobiles is presented in the context of

there is no speed limit restriction in Germa-

industrialization, world economic growth

ny, making it another paradise for automo-

and challenges - through machines, cars,

bile enthusiasts. Test driving a new vehicle

motor vehicles, photos and text slides. An

here is sheer pleasure.

absolutely exhilarating ‘Silver Arrow – Races’ section presents highlights from the company’s long tradition of motor racing history. In 1872, Daimler had written to his wife from his house in Cologne, “From here, the star will rise”. In 1883, in co-operation with Wilhelm Maybach, Daimler constructed the first fast-running, light universal engine. Karl Benz designed the car in 1886. The Mercedes Star (emblem) was adopted for the first car. In 1926, the companies of Daimler and Benz merged to form the world’s first automobile factory in Stuttgart-Unter-

Audi employs more than half the 27,000 population of the city of Neckarsulm. It is amazing to learn that Audi first began its journey by producing knitting machines, followed by bicycles; motor cycles and then ventured into car making as late as 1906.

Each day brought on a revelation: we visited the race track at Hockenheim and were sadly informed that painfully fitted, exclusive cars can only be used for one race, after which they are scrapped. We then drove to Manheim – the city of the first car, where in 1886 Mrs. Bertha Benz along with her two sons, drove the Patent Motorwagen automobile that her husband had given up hope on, to her parents’ home in Pforzheim. On the 24th and 25th of June every year, motorists passionately re-trace her route. For those interested in cars of the

türkeim. A big ‘star’ has been revolving on

future, a visit to Manheim on 10th and 11th

top of the tower of Stuttgart’s main railway

September 2011 is an absolute must. The

station since 1951 and graces many other

premiere Bertha Benz Challenge here will

buildings in the city since then.

feature vehicles with an alternative driving

Another interesting discovery was that


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Stuttgart is also the headquarters of Porsche, one of the world’s best sports car manufacturers. The Porsche Museum that opened in 2009 has an unusual design of a floating, monolithic structure that seems to hover in the air. Nearly 80 vehicles and

For those interested in cars of the future, a visit to Manheim on 10th and 11th September 2011 is an absolute must.

innumerable smaller items are on show

development for lightweight body design, engine development and interior development of the elite car was intriguing. The chassis of Audi is made of an aluminium alloy and is rust-proof. In 2010 alone, the Audi plant here had started production of five new models Audi R8 Spyder, Audi A8,

here. The exhibition area displays Porsche

rally to commemorate 125 years of the great

the A8l, the new Audi A7 and A6 Sedan and

Classics and Professor Ferdinand Porsche’s

invention. The architecture of Baroque and

produced a total of 335,083 vehicles dur-

achievements in automotive development,

modern buildings across, and gardens at

ing the year. The company makes cars only

history of the brand presented through

the Square complemented the occasion.

against order and hence can design accord-

thematic emphasis, spotlighting Porsche’s

We boarded a vintage Mercedes bus to

ing to individual specifications.

most important vehicles, outstanding race

join the rally. Interestingly, the luggage rack

The automobile tour in Stuttgart can

rankings and technical innovations. The

inside was made of netted rope and seats

never end. There are many more places of

museum also has its own workshop for

were big and comfortable.

interest, like the Classic Centre in Fellbach

maintaining museum exhibits and private-

Next was a guided factory tour of Audi

near Stuttgart, Retro Classics Trade Fair and

ly-owned vintage cars. We were able to

that employs more than half the 27,000 pop-

the ‘Centre of Excellence’ in Sindelfingen...

watch restoration of vehicles – overhaul-

ulation of the city of Neckarsulm. It is amaz-

to name a few. And of course, there will be

ing of the engine, bodywork and chassis

ing to learn that Audi first began its journey

new models of Mercedes Benz, Porsche

through a glass partition in the foyer.

by producing knitting machines, followed

and Audi that will keep rolling out every

The celebrations continued to Stutt-

by bicycles; motor cycles and then ventured

year and we will have much more to look

gart’s Palace Square that was holding a car

into car making as late as 1906. Technical

forward to on our next visit


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UNDER THE OVER Ar. Nitin Killawala condemns the inexcusable state of affairs of Mumbai’s skywalks and metro rail project to Ar. Aamcher…


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Ar. Aamcher n the city of Mumbai, all infrastructure projects are sadly created not necessarily as amenity to citizens but to make profits for the government and contractors, where the design element is

grossly missing. The worst example is of mushrooming skywalks and FOB’s (Foot Over-bridge). It is a monstrosity of the highest order. Apart from their vulgar aesthetics – they are forced upon the citizens totally bypassing the aspirations of end-users. Over the last couple of years, MMRDA embarked upon some forty skywalks at the cost of over `670 crores. These skywalks in the Western and Eastern suburbs of Mumbai are a fraudulent project, where the nexus between bureaucracy and handful of contractors are virtually destructing the city on the pretext of convenience to pedestrians. Authorities have presumed human beings are robots and they will walk wherever and at whatever level they are forced to. None of the skywalks are terminated at proper junctions where other modes of transport or utilitarian spaces, parking lots, etc. are provided. These skywalks are the ugly face of construction technology. The outdated roof cover using polycarbonate sheets is not only collecting dust and dirt but retains heat during the day. The over-sized structural members in steel occupy fragile footpaths and already over-used, motorized roads. The MMRDA have given false affidavits in the Court of Law that trees would only be trimmed, but in reality hundreds of trees, several generations old, have been brutally uprooted. Similarly they gave assurance of providing escalators/elevators at convenient locations to all the skywalks. Now they claim that there is neither space nor funds to provide the same. The worst is dismantling of 3 skywalks because now they have come to realize that the skywalks are an impediment to the alignment of the Metro Rail; on a similar note the MMRDA had earlier claimed that the same would be connected to Metro Rail! There is virtually no space to construct Metro Rail (which is now being challenged in Bombay High Court). All stations proposed are in High-rise Category to be constructed in the middle of roads; therefore the thought of connecting it with skywalks is nothing short of absurd. MMRDA is not interested in carrying out projects in the best interest of the citizen but wants to systematically destroy the city at exchequers cost. Moreover, these days a lot is being discussed on ‘green’ issues. Infrastructure projects constitute 90% of investment in our construction industry but these authorities are not only ignorant about these sensitive issues but are even non-accountable. I strongly feel that cities should have an integrated world-class infrastructure facility, which is a backbone to its growth

   To share more such designs or experiences, positive or negative, contact Ar. Aamcher at JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 33

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Creative ideas

Words: Savitha Hira; Images: courtesy Park Associati

Experience the 18-seater itinerant pack-n-carry restaurant that can sit anywhere – atop historical monuments, cliffs, even in the middle of the sea... JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 35

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i-tech is no longer just a word; it is

close to the headquarters of the European

and has a total floor area of 140 sq. m., dis-

a way of life! From touch screens

Community. It has been open for lunch and

tributed between a large open-planned

to virtual whiffs, almost every little

dinner in this location until the 3rd of July,

pavilion and a 50 sq. m. terrace space. The

mundane activity has donned a cyber man-

temporarily transforming Brussels’ skyline

pavilion is fitted with a visible kitchen and

tle. With ground space becoming premium,

with its presence.

a single large table that can be made to dis-

the sky is the limit – literally!

The project, conceived and organized

appear by raising it up to the ceiling; trans-

“The Cube - Dining with a View” – itiner-

by the Belgian event agency Absolute Blue,

forming the area into a leisurely lounge for

ant pack-n-carry restaurant is a brainchild of

has the design of the pavilion as well as

after-eating revelry. The kitchen, fitted with

the electronics giant, Electrolux. Designed

the interior design, developed by the Ital-

high-tech appliances in typical Electrolux

as a hi-profile mobile eatery, this semi-trans-

ian firm Park Associati, Milano; and Logo

style, proposes to host top international

parent structure celebrated its opening on

and Texture Design developed by Studio

chefs who will take turns in offering guests

1 April, 2011 in Brussels, sitting atop, none

FM Milano. The Cube, as it is easily called,

a show-cooking service with especially cre-

other than the Parc du Cinquantenaire,

is strikingly visible by its exterior white skin

ated menus.


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Conceived as a modular module, one

the outer surface. The base of the building,

and energy saving as well as those enabling

that suits all climatic conditions, even the

slightly raised with respect to the ground,

constant re-use.

most extreme; while always expressing the

accentuates the idea of lightness and clean-

The portable restaurant boasts of vis-

maximum in living comfort with its refined

ness of form that characterizes the entire

iting unexpected and dramatic locations

aesthetics and use of high-quality materi-

structure. Inside, more highly advanced

throughout Europe, active simultaneously

als, its interior is designed to suit different

technological solutions can be found in

in twin structures; two Electrolux Cube’s will


the lighting, heating, sound system and of

travel across Europe offering a memorable

course, the kitchen equipment.

dining experience for 18 guests per setting

The pavilion’s lightness of form is emphasized on the exterior by its white

The construction has the lightness and

in magnificent locations: Belgium, Italy, Rus-

colour and given a sense of movement

versatility of an exhibition stand juxtaposed

sia, Switzerland and Sweden, where it pro-

through the use of aluminium ‘skin’ that

with the design complexity of a building.

poses to reside for three months in each

has been laser-cut to create a texture with a

It uses materials that are highly innovative

location; on top of buildings, monuments

geometric design that covers the whole of

in terms of technology, eco-sustainability

and on occasions, even floating on water! JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 37

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The kitchen, fitted with high-tech appliances in typical Electrolux style, proposes to host top international chefs who will take turns in offering guests a show-cooking service with especially created menus. JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 39

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Interior Design Consultant Sarbjit Singh, of the Delhi-based Fabinteriors that has a staggering reputation in designing hospitality spaces, comments on the current trends and rues the technology takeover of hand-drawn sketches.

Design promo JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 41

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ospitality design has seen tremendous



& topping it all is the immaculate service.

rienced and widely exposed to global


So how do you introduce the Indian

design trends, some have to their credit

because it is perhaps the ultimate

ethos in a contemporary and minimalistic

outstanding projects at par if not beyond

form of public design. Economic growth

set up? The design should ideally respond

those of designers from abroad. Indian

has increased the footfalls of business

to the regional history and culture and

Design Councils should maintain a data

travellers and hotels have to be custom-

ideal locations could be selected to high-

bank of the indigenous expertise avail-

ized to suit their requirements. The form

light the traditional elements, making

able in the country to assist promoters for

has become more international & func-

them the main focus. (Ceiling, Walls, Floor

recommending suitable design consul-

tions appropriate high-tech requirements

coverings, Artworks, Artefacts, Paintings,

tants appropriate to the scale and nature

catering to the needs of various business

Sculpture, Textiles are some of the ways

of the project.

categories, guest rooms ranging from 150

wherein Indian forms and motifs could

But more than anything else, it is the

sq. ft. to 400 sq. ft., & facilities starting from

be incorporated suggestively.) The design

growing dependence on technology that

offering compact accommodation with a

would guide whether one uses symbolic

many times deprives the design of a soul.

self help eatery to a fully loaded deluxe

representations or actual design elements

Definition of volume including the engi-

room having all inbuilt office functions.

to emphasize the cultural ethos. This

neering services for the space such as

Business travellers generally are short-

leads to another strange trend of inviting

the AC, electrical, plumbing, fire fighting

staying guests with high expectations; as

designers from abroad. Indian designers,

& detection, acoustics & other technical

such the hotel has to be technically per-

particularly the new generation, not only

backups need to be well-defined in abso-

fect, ambiance soothing & international,

understand our culture and are expe-

lute accuracy. Also, contents of the space


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such as furniture, fixtures, etc. being an

loose furniture to perfect the proportions.

in design functions, working through CAD

inherit part of the space, should be equally

Free-hand drawing has the benefit of

make it easier. There are countless advan-

well defined. But surface finishes, furnish-

expressing one’s thoughts spontaneously.

tages in terms of drafting, printing, trans-

ing, artwork & accessories, lighting set-up,

Many times during the course of discus-

ferring drawings electronically to any part

etc. undergo stages of refinement well

sion a quick 3D hand sketch is far easier

of the world through email.

within the scheduled programme to meet

and effective than explaining in so many

Hotel projects need to be planned

estimated deadlines.

words. Drawing is the carriage of design

well to be completed as per schedule

To arrive at taking decisions on various

and the two are inseparable parts of the

due to large commercial commitments. It

stages of design development, it helps to

process. A classic reference would be of

is important not to keep anything on an

sketch out the proposed concept for a

historical buildings classified as “Won-

open end beyond the date of completion.

preliminary review prior to moving to the

ders” – they were all made in the absence

Trends may come and go, but the flow

drawing board. When all aspects of the

of CAD facilities with utmost perfection &

of creativity needs to be constantly nur-

interior design and details with specifica-


tured while adapting to the ever advanc-

tions are resolved, the drawings are con-

Post approval of the design con-

ing technologies which should enhance

verted to a 3D virtual reality for a final

cept, which is so much easier through 3D

and not takeover the natural flow of

review prior to submitting working draw-

sketches, they can then be taken to the


ings good for construction. While the site

CAD system, which has many technologi-

Sarbjit Singh is a member of the Indian Design

work is put to execution, one gets ade-

cal advantages over hand drawings. With

Council & Governing Council NID and can be

quate time to review the prototype of the

engineering systems to be incorporated

contacted at JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 43

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Graphic design


Digital technology carves out completely new and full-ofpossibilities solutions that positively impact the dynamics of graphic design.

Words: Savitha Hira; Images: Bosco Graphics, Spain JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 45

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t is truly amazing the lengths that man can go to, to showcase the wonders of arts and science to his fellowmen. The

City of Arts and Sciences or the Ciudad De Las Artes Y Las Ciencias (CAC), in Valencia, Spain is a unique complex devoted to scientific and cultural dissemination. Created through the dynamic collaboration of two Spanish architects – Santiago Calatrava and Félix Candela – the structure, like all other Calatrava’s sculptural, signatory projects, has a consummate identity and an endless capacity for entertaining and stimulating the minds of its visitors. Therefore, integrating a signage programme in tandem with such strong architectural vocabulary, striking just the right balance, is an exercise commendably accomplished by Miguel Bosco and his team at Bosco Graphics, Spain. Establishing an authentic, permanent and functional dialectic, which collaborates in the understanding of messages, Bosco Graphics works on a signage system that is based on three essential points: sequence, prediction and structure. Rearranging the elements of graphics, and prioritizing those elements that control the operation of the buildings, one observes a meticulous simplification of the information and the types of signs. Likewise, graphics’ integration to architectural and corporative context and messages support systems are designed to merge with the architectural style and the museum contents. Analysis of signs’ location according to the function that they accomplish, and application of basic principles of clarity, legibility and visibility, establishes the prudent selection of graphic standards. Consequently, icons, selection of font, spatial flow, and colours... all weave a distinct story behind their choice and pattern of application. The chromatic code (white, black and grey) answers the functional and communicative characteristics of the space, where the chosen colours reinforce CAC’s identity and fit perfectly with the architecture. In respect of functionality, the choice of this range adjusts to the criteria of contrast with the buildings that every JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 47

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good communication has to accomplish.

a completely new technological dimen-

flexibility and easily manageable display of

As a basic rule, white colour is used for

sion, full of possibilities that can improve

information, the CMS is designed to com-

the signs and background, and the grey is

the presentation of contents. Incidentally,

pose coherent, dynamic layouts for differ-

used for content (texts and icons). The only

the digital system solves three essential

ent directional and informative content.

exception is in the digital signs, where the

problems: it improves the image and com-

Further, it can be updated in real time and

background is dark and the typography is in

munication; reduces the visual chaos and

allows for sequences to be scheduled, syn-

white for better on-screen readability.

encourages resources saving.

chronized, and assigned simply by select-

The selected font – Helvetica Neue

Two types of digital signs predominate:

ing one or more information points on an

Condensed – has a perfect tracking com-

a group of 5 LCD screens displaying ticket-

interactive map, so that the right informa-

position and balance between the differ-

availability and expositions-information is

tion can be displayed at the right time and

ent weights (thin, regular, bold) chosen to

positioned at the entrance of every build-

in the right place. This also facilitates easy

represent the different languages. Width of

ing. Totally, 4 groups of 5 LCD screens each

application by the staff, who can quickly

the letters adjusts the proportion of white

are ordained for the Museu Principe Felipe,

edit and update information every time

spaces between them; characters connect

and 2 LCD screens for the Hemisfèric. By

they add an exhibit, announce a workshop,

like the links of a chain; the line is compact.

the museum’s main path, a series of totems,

or remind visitors of how many seats are

Texts are written in small letters, for bet-

each comprising 2 LCD screens offers vari-

available for the current day’s IMAX show –

ter perception of the content, except and

able information: directional, promotional,

results always consistent with house style.

exclusively for the building names (always

specific, and informative about expositions

To guarantee consistency despite network

in capital letters); and in italics for extracts

and activities. The main project consists of

problems, if any, the system server only

of other texts. The thumb rule to follow

14 totems in the interior of Museu Principe

sends out new content, edits and updates,

in all signage systems is the economy of

Felipe, and 2 at Hemisféric. Digital charac-

letting client computers generate video

space; this significantly impacts the choice

teristic of the system allows an easy change

output themselves.

of typography with family Condensed as a

of contents, allowing dynamic, customiz-


able and always-on-change information.

Besides static signs, a dynamic digi-




With such laudable progress in digital methodologies and ease in installation


and application, graphic design services

tal system is designed for the interior of

laborated with Bosco Graphics, design-

are today a multi-pronged synchronization

buildings. The use of digital contents dis-

ing a content management system “CMS”

designed to accomplish comprehensive

tributed across many screens provides

specific for this project. With the focus on

solutions via minimal intervention


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Design aspect



Words: Savitha Hira Images: courtesy Gramazio & Kohler Architects

An architect firm manipulates a single design aspect – the façade – as their bludgeon to manifest a progressive approach to conventionality. JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 51

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here are generally varied views and

its village-rural structures for the most

stay of the project is its façade. This design

approaches to the diktats of urban

part. The preservation law here requires

aspect reinterprets the typology of the

planning, especially when they are

particular attention towards this sensitive

surrounding gable-roof houses and the

referenced to physical characteristics and

situation. The architect firm chosen for

building regulations’ mandatory require-

scales or as we say physical typology. Sev-

this project, Gramazio & Kohler, however,

ment of ‘the use of wood for the façade’.

eral academicians and researchers have

is a firm whose design philosophy is based

“The need for such a materialization, which

time and again reinstated that typology is

on a combination of the physics of built

at first sight appeared to be incompatible

critical to analytical, design, and regulatory

architecture with digital logics, where the

with our design intent proposing an exten-

situations in urban planning. However, the

potentials of the computer and of digital

sive window strip running along the edge

recent new sensual dimension in the expe-

fabrication become complementary to tra-

of the roof, led us to developing a wooden

rience of build structures offered by com-

ditional design, construction and building

slats structure enveloping the façade. This

puters and Computer Numerical Control

methods. Consequently, the sensual qual-

gives the house a homogeneous and con-

(CNC) fabrication processes that is being

ity of this design culture manifests itself in

tinuous wooden appearance and simul-

actively addressed and creatively explored

the novel expression of a digital material-

taneously activates, by modulating them,

by architects of our generation, provides a

ity. How the progressive firm has reinter-

the generous transparencies and visual

differential view of the approach to typo-

preted the state laws to find a via media

relationships between the living spaces

logically-driven design.

between the traditional and the contem-

and the spectacular surrounding,” informs

porary idiom is a fine feat that we chose

Fabio Gramazio, co-founder and principal

to illustrate.

architect of the firm.





addressing this issue, we zeroed in on a simple and beautifully designed home

The home in question is a dwelling

The architects have a significantly

located at Riedikon, near the city of Uster,

that faces an unbuildable green belt on a

discernible design on their hands that

about 30 kms from Zurich – one of the

lake in a typical Swiss village. Apart from all

has been accomplished by parametri-

oldest Swiss settlements that has retained

other design essentials involved, the main-

cally adapting form to context. They have


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applied the stipulations of two geometric

without losing out on the scenic sur-

operations to determine the ground plan


shape of the house, adhering to the man-

“The private client, a sculptor, asked for

dates of ensuring a clear view of the lake

a house that could accommodate both, a


from the neighbouring house and allow-

single person household and, in the future,

Client: Private

ing access and parking behind the house.

a small family. Additionally, a separate ate-

Architect Firm: Gramazio & Kohler, Zurich

Like a tent, an overhanging pitched

lier space in the ground floor was required.

Collaborators: Raffael Gaus (project leader),

roof covers the high rooms in the upper

Simple requirements… where the onus of

Anya Meyer, Cristian Veranasi, Manuel Bad-

storey. The window strip, which runs along

the design lay in interpreting the building

er, Damaris Baumann, Gabriel Cuellar, Peter

the edge of the roof, emphasizes the hori-

regulations and the typology of the geo-

Heckeroth, Claudia Nasri, Silvan Oesterle

zontal structure while 315 vertical wooden

graphic location,” he says.

Selected Experts: ibeg bauengineering

slats, affixed to the surface of the wall,

Although every single project is, in the

GmbH (structural engineer), Thomas Mel-

completely envelope the façade. By milling

beginning, a challenge for most architects,

liger (planning), Raumanzug (energy con-

the edges, cross sections of the slats have

in the case of Gramazio & Kohler, there is

sulting), Archobau AG (economy consult-

been modulated in correspondence with

always some innovative idea, often depen-

ing), Ralph Bärtschi (Programming)

the window strip so that requirements of

dent on some technology that is not yet

Site area: 655 m2

sight and sun protection are fulfilled, and

available on the market. The challenge is

Built site area: 134 m2

various, flowing levels of transparency set.

then to be able to realize it in time and with-

Gross floor area: 295 m2

Being innovative and daring to question

in the costs without losing the scope of the

Gross cubic space: 1001 m3

established methods and known aesthet-

initial idea. “The challenge lies in realizing

ics, the architects have designed a modern

a project that conveys something relevant

home with a triple-glazed glass envelope

about the ‘zeitgeist’ of our time without

to absolutely connect the inside-outside

being fashionable,” says Gramazio JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 53

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Design aspect Exhibition space Delightenment sets new standards in conceptual creative design.

& COLOUR C COL OL SPACE LIGHT Words: Sheena D’Lima Images: courtesy Delightenment


elightenment, coined cunningly from the words ‘delight’ and ‘enlightenment’ promises Pune’s culture-loving, kitsch set, a creative space, where everything unusual is celebrated and nothing is what it seems to be. Delightenment is

located a few paces from its older cousin ‘Either Or’ (Pune’s one-of-its-kind kitsch store) at Sohrab Hall. It was established on the 15th of January 2011 by the creative team at Either Or as an extension to the store. However, Delightenment is anything but a store! “It is a creative space that can be used for anything between a film screening and an exhibition hall,” explains co-founder Ritika Tikoo.

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We were already enamoured by

over so that it appears like the colourful

unassuming, I-put-it-there-because-I-felt-

the bright azure store-front shutter that

floors are a well-timed, happy accident.

like-it feel that lends Delightenment its

stood out, and sparklingly so, from the

The creative team who dreamt up Delight-

homely warmth.

drab brown and beige palette of Sohrab

enment have specially planned the space

Still, that’s not entirely why the place

Hall. Yet, nothing could prepare us for the

so that it could be multifunctional. This

holds so much charm. It only takes a quick

explosion of colour that splashed across

is why there is a table set for a food fes-

look around to feel like a child discover-

Delightenment when we entered its por-

tival in front of us, while a wall to our left

ing secret nooks and crannies. Take for

tals. The polished floors are a heady whirl

showcases an assortment of bric-a-brac;

instance, a small box-like structure jutting

of blue and orange. At certain points in

and a few steps away, books lie stacked in

out of the back wall with a shutter pulled

the room, paint buckets, their insides

no apparent order – the way they would

down. “It isn’t a shutter,” we stand cor-

crusty with fake dried paint, lay tipped

be on your bookcase at home. It is this

rected. It is a door designed to look like


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a shutter. We’re barely over the surprise

some extremely well deliberated upon,

not the trademark that subsumes your

when we enter a mirror-lined changing



room to greet multiple reflections of our-

theories back every such design sur-

August will mark the eighth month of

selves. “The thought behind this design is

prise at Delightenment. The creation of

Delightenment coming into being, and

to show that ideas can multiply in a min-

Delightenment really started with the

patrons have come to accept it as a place

ute, even a second,” explains the flesh and

wish to create a community of individuals

where one can expect the unexpected.

blood Ritika to one of our several reflected

who celebrate themselves. As Ritika puts

The bright colours offset by the soothing

selves in the mirror. And here we were

it, “We want you to discover your identity

white and pine wood make for a journey,

thinking that a changing room is a chang-

and let us support you in that journey. For

an experience, truly a celebration of vitali-

ing room is a changing room!

us, you are the centre and the performer

ty and variety, exactly the way the creators

on the stage of life. We are the assistant,

envisioned it

There are many such thoughts and



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My space



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NABILITY Design Consultant, Sharmistha Banerjee recapitulates her six-month journey that led to creating an innovative harvesting solution to extract cancer chemotherapy drug (taxoid) from taxus trees. Words & Images: Sharmistha Banerjee


ave you ever noticed the fine fragrance near a bunch of pine trees after a thunderstorm? It was March of 2010 when I did, while contemplating my Masters Thesis project at Technical University of

Delft in The Netherlands. As I enquired, I got to know about two scientists (Marijnissen and Roos), who inspired by this phenomenon, attempted to induce an artificial electric field (artificial thunderstorm scenario) around a taxus tree and managed to capture some white crystalline sprays of taxoid on their electrode. Unfortunately, due to the crude nature of the set-up, the leaves of the tree would touch the electrode, causing sparks, and would consequently burn out. Subsequently, they had been looking for someone to refine this possibly non-destructive (to the tree) technique and create an economically viable harvesting solution. I knew that taxoids are a group of very highly-priced cancer chemotherapy drugs. That they could be harvested artificially, was a revelation. I was told that this technique might phenomenally reduce the cost of these drugs; and I just could not stop myself from meeting these scientists for greater details. My job started with how this crude set-up could be converted into a commercially viable harvester. JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 59

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However, the even bigger challenge

strong belief in the ideology of ‘adapt-

into an extensive study of geometry and its

was the fact that it turned out to be a

ing to nature’, I proposed to design a sys-

implications on electric field. My aim was

multi-disciplinary project. Since trees were

tem wherein minimal invasion would be

to create a uniform electric field all over the

involved, I needed to consult a biologist;

required into the natural growth patterns


since an electric field was required for the

of the taxus. Hence, I aspired to design a

extraction, I went on to collaborate with

harvester that will adapt itself to nature.

The next very crucial riddle was to negate the very big pain point – burning

electrical engineers; to understand the

Interestingly, a thorough study of the

of the needles (leaves). Devising an envi-

dynamics of growing and maintaining

taxus species revealed that there are 9 dif-

ronment friendly and non-destructive har-

taxus and to know more about its differ-

ferent species with several variations with-

vesting possibility thus became the core

ent species, I also engaged a horticulturist

in the same species. Taxus is available as

requisite of the entire project philosophy.

into dialogue. Now my team comprised an

natural growing trees or cultivated hedges.

So, if I were to find any success, I had to

expert each in biology, physics, chemistry,

So ideally my harvester had to work on

do something to prevent burning first. So

botany, electrical engineering, industrial

a non-invasive technique without any

I thought, why not provide an appropriate

design, horticulture and very interestingly,

hedge trimming or shaping. It would also

material defense to the needles so that

ecological philosophy. My harvester is a

have to cater to all the different species of

the electric field is non-destructive to it; is

true example of what heights a collabora-

taxus, which vary in terms of branch and

more effective in extraction and addition-

tive multi-disciplinary team can achieve.

leaf structure. These findings were encour-

ally adsorbs the taxoids so that it stays on

Very briefly, the analogy of the basic

aging as they were cost-effective too. The

the harvester till it can be retrieved at the

principle on which the harvester works

hedges once planted would not need any

end of the day.

is that after a thunderstorm, a fine fra-

manual intervention – this implied tremen-

A study of more than 200 different

grance of vegetation can be experienced

dous fuel saving costs on farm equipments

polymers and semi-conductors brought

near a bunch of pine trees. The fragrance

for shaping and trimming hedges. This also

me to the perfect answer.

is caused due to the imbalance in electric

meant that I could carry sustainability up to

field in the atmosphere, which in turn is

the very core of the system.

I thus went on to create a working prototype and adjust various parameters to

balanced by the trees by releasing bio-

After having passed the test of my

prove my design. It has been a year now

chemicals into the atmosphere. With a

ideology towards design, I had to embark

that the hedges on which I conducted


Design Matrix_July-Aug11.indb 60

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the experiments are doing perfectly fine.


Hence the non-destructive nature of the

Sharmistha Banerjee is a Design Associate

design is quite evident.

at Shenoy Innovation Studio, IDC, IIT Bombay, Mumbai.

It was now important to propose a

She has recently completed her Masters in Integrated Product

viable commercial setup in which this har-

Design from the Technical Universality of Delft, The Netherlands.

vester can be placed. From yield calcula-

Focussed in the area of innovative product & system development

tions, it was obvious that centralized farm

in a collaborative work environment, this is her most challenging

set-up will be needed for the proposed

project. She can be contacted on 91 9768424980

harvester. Initial calculations involving the


proposed design of a sustainable farm-


ing and harvesting scenario indicate that it is possible to bring down the cost of


the drug by about 20 times. I am thrilled

Taxoids are a group of cancer chemotherapy drugs and are priced at around ` 2500 per

to the core imagining the implications to

mg. Each patient requires approximately 2g of taxoid for treatment and that’s what makes

the large underprivileged cancer patients

the cancer treatment so expensive. Synthetic and cheaper versions of the drug are also

across India, Africa and any other develop-

available but they have a low curing spectrum. Hence doctors prefer the natural drug. Also,

ing country. Another aspect of the achieve-

the concentration of taxoids in the trees is so low that six 60-100 year old trees are required

ment that gives me great pleasure is the

per patient. The current processes require either the tree to be cut or all needles (leaves)

fact that now I can extract pure taxoids that

to be pruned and digested through an array of chemicals. This has brought the tree close

do not require any further chemical pro-

to extinction. Hence cancer treatment sounds very unfriendly to the pocket as well as the

cessing and allow the trees to live happily


ever after. Thus, herein lay a seed of nature friendly, sustainable and renewable farming era. This technology, if successful, can bring in a green revolution in the essential oil industry. My efforts continue…

HOW DOES THE HARVESTER WORK? • The harvester clasps a branch • The geometry of the harvester distributes all leaves in the branch uniformly. • The electrode in the harvester starts the extraction process, which runs typically for around half an hour at a time. • The insulator on the harvester protects the leaves from burning due to the electrode. • The insulator also adsorbs the taxoid extracts. • The harvester then moves on to clasp the next branch. • At the end of the day all the collected taxoids can be extracted from the harvester by an ethanol wash. • Same branch can be harvested with an interval of 3-4 months JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 61

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Young guns


ATTACK We uncover the story of a blogger, who realized her potential as an artist, and is climbing up the ladder to success via Facebook. Words: Priyanka Mathur & Varun Godinho; Images: courtesy the designer

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irtana Krishnan, 22, is as unconven-

Kirtana was initially worried that she

tional as they come. She’s an artist;

would eventually discover that she should

although she says that she’s a musi-

have stuck to painting; however, as she

cian, blogger, and graphic designer – all

started learning Photoshop, all her appre-

rolled into one. Candidly admitting that she

hensions disappeared and she began to

is still to find her “niche”, she’s also one of

thoroughly enjoy what she was doing. A

the rare breed of versatile visual artists, who

self-employed designer and artist, her main

flits between media that ranges from walls

project these days is to set up a website and

and shoes to canvases and virtual spaces.

portfolio for herself. Though it is just a Word-

This young artist started painting only

Press customization, she has been picking

about three years ago, when she was in her

up stuff over the past one year from friends

last year of college. Her first ‘project’ was

who design and from the internet. Through

painting a pair of canvas shoes for herself.

her website, she has been able to discover

“They were cheap white shoes, and I didn’t

the wonders of the mixed media world. Her

really care about ruining them,” explains Kir-

new-found love now is mixing traditional

tana. “So I painted them. In retrospect, that was a pretty ugly pair, but I was pleased with it back then.” This led to a series of shoes, after which she began to look for a medium less restricting and decided to move on to painting guitars, which were larger ‘canvases’ in comparison. Two guitars and two walls later, she opted for the traditional canvas, finding it to be a great medium and one she could freely express with. Like most artists, every one of Kir-

Her new-found love now is mixing traditional and digital, apart from reworking paintings in Photoshop. She also enjoys doing photo manipulations and is ecstatic about how it all works so beautifully together

tana’s projects revolves around a theme.

and digital, apart from reworking paintings in Photoshop. She also enjoys doing photo manipulations and is ecstatic about how it all works so beautifully together. Today, Facebook serves as an excellent platform for young entrepreneurs like Kirtana. After painting her first pair of shoes, it became a hobby of sorts. A friend suggested that she start selling shoes. Despite her initial apprehensions, her friend remained determined and helped her set up a Facebook page and all of a sudden, she was in business. Through the networking site,

She explains, “When I was painting shoes,

behave on a surface, as compared to ink.

she has now been able to sell artwork,

I always worked in keeping with a theme.

Designing, of course, is all about the brief.

make several contacts with gallerists and

The client would give me a theme – some-

So far, she has worked with branding, layout

media people. Keeping the overall tone of

one wanted Rastafari and somebody else

designing, artwork, illustrations and Word-

her business casual, she only tells people

wanted the number 13. I always spent a

Press customizations.

about what is on the site, requesting them

lot of time doing some basic research so I

Once she had several projects under

to check it out sometime. She is confident

could find elements I wanted to work with.

her belt, she decided to step into the digi-

that there will always be someone out there

For people who didn’t really have a theme

tal world. Says she, “Painting for a living is a

who will find her products interesting and

in mind, I’d ask them to tell me about the

hard thing to do, good for pocket money at

eventually buy them. Given Facebook’s

things they liked and did, their favourite

my level, but not much more. Sometime last

popularity, there will also be more people

colours, their favourites from my previous

year, while I was trying to figure out what I

who will stick around on her page and

shoes, to get an idea of their taste. However,

wanted to do with my life and my career, a

“like” things regularly and share her links. It

when it came to canvases, very few people

friend suggested graphic design. He was a

doesn’t matter if all of them aren’t buying.

gave me themes to work on. Everything

designer himself, and he reckoned that if I

When you’re 21 and feeling uncertain about

was left to my discretion.”

could do fine art, I could probably do com-

where you’re heading, it’s nice to just feel appreciated sometimes, she feels.

While she is experimental with her

mercial art equally well. I was apprehensive

ideas, she, however, is not as experimental

because I knew that I’d have to develop a

Judging from Kirtana’s achievements, a

with the medium she uses. Though she has

whole new set of aesthetics to become a

year down the line, she has embarked on a

tried painting with ink and tea before, she

designer. Besides, the only thing I could do

path that shows tremendous promise. That

tends to stick to acrylics most of the time.

with a computer was check my mail. I was as

she has an eye for art, irrespective of the

She feels that though ink gives rich colours,

far from being tech-savvy as one could ever

medium, is an undisputed fact, and her will-

it doesn’t last as well as acrylics do. Also, it

be. It was scary, because nobody wants to

ingness to experiment is what sets her apart

is a lot easier to predict how acrylics will

start off on a whole new path at 21.”

from the others in the field


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Unspoilt by human aspirational interventions, Mundgod in Karnataka is the ultimate sanctuary for, reputedly, the world’s largest Tibetan Monastery. Words: Savitha Hira; Images: Arun Narvekar; courtesy Upalekar Sadekar Architects




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ust like a set of project drawings are a

flat agricultural land with soft soil condi-

and the terrain cut down to the hardest

compilation of sections, elevations and

tions, and amidst hot and humid climate

rock. This of course negated the use of any

perspectives, a designer’s repertoire

with heavy rainfall, is 2, 38,000 sq. ft. of land

retaining walls. However, the flight of steps

spans multi-faceted design programmes.

pledged to Tibetan monks. With the vicin-

became an unavoidable feature as it held

Upalekar Sadekar Architects have been in

ity known for Tibetan settlements and six

a symbolic reverence for the monks, who

practice since 1981 working with their USP,

other monasteries, this area, too, has been

climb up the height of 12-14 feet to pay

which is “creative deliverance across diverse

developed into a beautiful large monastery,

obeisance to their deity.


perhaps the world’s largest one. When the

Maintaining the basic guidelines, the

Apart from the regular fare that every

team began working on the construction,

monastery has its main entrance at the first

designer sprints through, Upalekar Sadekar

they found that they could contribute a

floor level, leading to the main hall. The

Architects have had the novel experience

very personal touch by way of design in the

ground floor hosts the dormitories and

to design a mosque, a monument symbol-

predictable construct of this religious sect.

common toilets; while the other domestic

izing peace, a monastery…etc. While each

Generally, the norm for construction of

quarters occupy the periphery. Respecting

of these structures are generally governed

a monastery lays out two mandates: a flight

the ordained size of the main chanting hall

by a very stringent set of standard norms

of steps leading to the main hall, and reclin-

(the foremost and most prominent feature

and parameters for intervention, the archi-

ing walls. While the architects understood

of a monastery), the grid of structural col-

tects relate their experience in making a dif-

that the features were an integral part of

umns and beams, etc., the large span in the

ference as part of the social fabric of their

the hitherto programmes of monasteries

200 x 190 sq. ft. main chanting hall with a


being built on hill slopes and rough terrain;

ceiling height of 38 ft., has been infused

Situated in the midst of a forest area

here the design could be defined differ-

with a touch of skylights that usher ample

in Karnataka, adjacent to village Mundgod,

ently. Firstly, since the land was agricultural

natural light into the innermost areas of the

approx. 55 km from Hubli, on a partially

to a large extent, foundations had to be laid

hall, whilst clerestory windows at higher


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levels provide for natural light and ventila-

outdoor gathering areas, chanting rooms,

tion in the surrounds.

and well-landscaped surrounds. The typical

The other significant feature of a mon-

feature of pagodas here are also used as a

astery – the elaborate and vibrant Tibetan

camouflage for ancillary services on the ter-

art work that is generally done in Plaster

race viz., staircase rooms, lift machine room,

of Paris, has been re-programmed to be

water tanks and vent pipe outlets; where

executed in moulded fibre glass for speedy

the height of the ceiling to the topmost

execution and a long-lasting effect. This

level of the pagoda is 110 ft.

meant that the architects detailed the

The Drepung Loseling Monastery

artwork, trellises, emblematic references

thus follows a design style that is typically

and the like, and communicated the same

Tibetan with red brick, ochre yellow and a

through scaled drawings and details to the

black-and-white base. Internally, the abbey

specialized Tibetan craftsmen, who then

is as serene with its monumental brass Bud-

executed the same to precision-driven skill

dha seated on an alter against a backdrop

and intensity.

of hundreds of miniature Buddhas, instan-

With regard to the remaining spa-

taneously overpowering one with calm

tial programme, the project commanded

and sobriety; as it is vibrant with its heavily

good cross ventilation, high ceilings, big

ornate brackets and colourful columns; its

windows and double walls for insulation;

precisely spaced rows of red floor mats, and

a five-storey ancillary building with rooms

the typical orange and maroon garb of the

for visitors and special domestic quarters

dedicated monks, urging one to live life to

for the Dalai Lama; prayer halls, debate halls,

the fullest

The large span in the 200 x 190 sq. ft. main chanting hall with a ceiling height of 38 ft., has been infused with a touch of skylights that usher ample natural light into the innermost areas of the hall.


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Anshita Asnani uncovers her latent talent as an interior designer and gives the best of them a run for their money.


Words: Sheena D’Lima; Images: courtesy Anshita Asnani

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Unmasking talent

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t is difficult to visualise a hard-core pro-

but not many trained CAs can boast of the

fessional with figures on her fingers and

same thing. Anshita, who also designed

balance sheets on her mind actually set-

her guest house, recounts that designing

ting aside time and effort to create an aes-

an office and a home were two totally dif-

thetically resplendent workspace – albeit

ferent experiences. “When you’re thinking

for herself. Every morning, after a round of

of designing a home, you always remember

golf, Anshita Asnani, a chartered accoun-

that the key focus is relaxation. But an office

tant walks into her office in Ahmedabad,

space has different requirements altogeth-

Gujarat at Urban Management Consultants,

er,” she muses. It did not take long for her

where she is also Managing Director. Work

to figure out just what these requirements

begins as usual until a visitor walks into her

were. “I wanted a space that reflected a

office and complements the fountain or the

fine blend of energy and relaxation,” she

design of the lobby. That’s when Anshita

confirms, stressing the need to create an

recalls with self indulgence, “I designed this

atmosphere where people were driven and


focussed enough to work out creative solu-

For a professional interior designer or

tions in a high-stress industry.

architect, it’s all in a day’s work to whip up an

Once she got the idea set, it was time

office or two or a holiday home in Timbuktu

for execution. Aware of the mammoth task


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she had taken upon herself, Anshita chose

the real estate market is supposedly at an

to tread with nothing but utmost caution.

all time high.

She contacted everyone who could possi-

Anshita is brisk and businesslike when

bly help in the process. “I got a contractor

asked about the challenges she faced dur-

to look into things like air-conditioning sys-

ing the project. “Nothing happened that

tems, plumbing, water proofing and load

doesn’t happen in other industries. Stress,

bearing walls. Besides, I also needed help

last minute panic attacks. What can you do

dealing with suppliers of material like wood,

but crib a little and move on?” she says with

cement, etc.” The drawn plans of her office

the air of someone who deals with emer-

space sat on her desk for months getting

gencies everyday.

fine tuned; and she only went ahead with

This is not to say that the ride was all

the construction when she was absolutely

smooth sailing. The experience of a char-

certain about what she wanted to do. And

tered accountant donning the cap of a

the caution paid off. “Once the construction

designer came with its fair share of worry,

started, touch-wood, there were no chang-

not the least of which was managing the

es made to any of the original plans. Today,

ture and colour invokes a sense of character

company side-by-side. “I came through it

this office space stands exactly the way it

and articulation to the space. The office has

and the experience has taught me how to

was envisioned,” she smiles.

two broad divisions – the first is a recep-

be patient,” she says. And would she take

The office itself, true to what Anshita

tion, the director’s office and a meeting

on designing another space somewhere

defines as her personal style, is minimalist

room; the second consists of the work pool.

else in the country? “I doubt it, at this stage,”

without being too stark. The use of materi-

Abundant natural light, neutral tones and

and laughs, “It’s too stressful and very dif-

als like Zikki plaster, concrete, Cudappa and

clean bright lines of the office character-

ficult and I would have to set aside a lot of

wood, together make for a look that in tex-

ize this new work space – in a state where



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V A MALI Artist Gayatri Mehta walks down the pages of portrait painting in India and celebrates artist Shri V A Mali’s contribution to the nation on the occasion of his birth centenary this year.

Words: Gayatri Mehta; Images: courtesy the Art Society of India, Gangal Publications JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 77

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Mali’s portraits adorned the walls of high courts, Parliament House and other public places of high prestige.


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t was a recognized tradition of yore to

revered ones for posterity.

credit and irreplaceable page in Indian art

adorn the walls of important places

In India particularly, portrait painting

history with his incarnation of the images

with portraits of the men that gave the

finds reference in mythological stories of

of Goddess Lakshmi and Saraswati, which

institutions their standing in society. Judg-

Aniruddha and Usha, where a friend of Usha

through his oleographs have reached

es, renowned industrialists, even family

is mentioned as an artist making a portrait

almost all households in the Indian sub-

portraits that were hand-painted very artis-

of Aniruddha based on a description by


tically recounting the general expression

Usha. Gandhar sculptures portrayed Shiva,

Gradually, the subject of portraying

of the family elders, along with portraiture

Parvati and other deities with mythological

kings and heroes graduated to that of poli-

through calendar art, were until not very

and historical figures in sculpture and relief

ticians, industrialists, and civic servants of

long ago the most accepted manner of fine

form in temple complexes. Miniatures also

the highest ranks according to the prevail-

art in homes, corporates and public offices.

showcased portrayal of lords, kings and

ing standards of importance. Sir J J School

In fact, portrait painting has an age-

emperors. These were representations with

of Art became the formal centre for learn-

old tradition in each part of the world with

a strategic standard laid down by the aes-

ing and teaching the art of painting, where

a unique style of composition, use of the

theticians or the proficiencies of that era.

Shri A X Trindad, Shri Pestonji Bomanji, Shri

medium and style of handling; as also the

Under Western influence, however,

M F Pithawala, Shri S L Haldankar, Shri M V

socio-economic impression on both, the

portraits with realistic representation of

Dhurandhar and others were the learned

subject and the style of the era in which

human form got rooted for the contem-

masters of portrait painting carrying for-

it is painted. This legendary art was never

porary style of portraiture. Raja Ravi Varma,

ward the baton of realistic art of which

lost from time immemorial because of the

the pioneer of portraiture, in addition to

a name of rare caliber, Shri V A Mali, rose

inherent human desire to perpetuate the

painting kings, also painted mythological

to the highest rank. Shri Vasantrao Anan-

image of self or of loved ones or even of

figures and common people. He has to his

trao Mali was born on August 22, 1911 at


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Kolhapur. Son of Shri Anantrao Mali and

of India). Mali’s portraits adorned the walls

Grandson of Malharao Mali, both artists of

of high courts, Parliament House and other

repute, V A Mali had the inherent qualities

public places of high prestige. To name a

of an artist. Unfortunately he lost his father

few of innumerable famous personalities

early, and his uncle Shri Damodar Kolvalkar

that were captured as portraits by him: Mr.

reared him. A renowned photographer of

Boman, (mayor of Mumbai), Shri Chhagla

his time, Kolvalkar understood the capabil-

(Justice, Bombay High Court), famous sur-

ity of his young nephew and enrolled him

geon Dr. V N Shirodkar, industrialists like

into Ketker Art Institute of Drawing, and lat-

Shri Lalchand Hirachand, Shri Shantanurao

er into Sir J J School of Art. At the age of 22

Kirloskar, Shri G D Birla, Shri S M Dahanukar,

years, Shri V A Mali with his dedication and

Smt. N S Dahanukar etc.

Today at the age of 100, he has become a little frail, his memory almost lost, but he still fondly remembers his art of portraiture, his studio in Girgaon and his success as a portrait painter.

hard work, achieved mastery in painting,

My association with ‘Mali sir’, as we

the studio was also equipped with a stage

which won him prestigious gold medals

fondly call him, is from the day I became

where he would make his models sit. From

from The Bombay Art Society. He painted

a member of The Art Society of India, and

there, he tells us that he used to go out and

all types of subjects like landscapes, still life

later got closer when I was elected as part

catch hold of interesting characters and

and figures, but was always special with his

of the working committee. A strong but

paint them. His portraits not only include


modest person always dressed in black or

the elite and famous but also the common

His undeniable skill for portrait painting

blue suit and always wearing his innocent

characters of everyday life – albeit with a

recognized him as one of the topmost rank-

smile would be the most punctual person

special look like monkey tamer; the tuntun-

ing painters of the prevailing masters when

in all the programmes and meetings. There,

wala, the kadaklaxmi, the peacock seller,

three portrait artists of the highest calibre

the human aspect of Mali sir was more vis-

the famous Nepali woman smoking a pipe,

were invited to paint the portrait of then

ible, where he would care for all the artist

etc. Today at the age of 100, he has become

Chief Justice of High Court Sir Beaumont.

members, their paintings. A person of few

a little frail, his memory almost lost, but he

Shri V A Mali’s portrait was highly acclaimed

words and great deeds with an encourag-

still fondly remembers his art of portraiture,

and was selected to adorn the walls of the

ing approach to all around him, he would

his studio in Girgaon and his success as a

High Court. This gave him immense popu-

never get angry but stick to his principles

portrait painter when he was selected to

larity. He was later on invited by Lady Beau-

and policies with firmness.

paint Chief Justice Sir Beaumont; his por-

mont to paint her portrait too. The unend-

Mali sir has often regaled us with anec-

trait of the legendary cinematographer

ing journey of painting portraits continued

dotes and memories of his long innings

and great artist Shri Baburao Painter of

till he was 95 years of age, when he painted

as a painter. His uncle had a huge photo-

Kolhapur; his association with famous art-

and gifted a life-size portrait of Shri Mahavir

graphic studio at Girgaon and Mali sir was

ists; his colleagues at the Art Society of

Prasad Saraf (the great philanthropist and

given a special place for painting there.

India and his friends Shri N S Bendre, Shri

donor for the renovation of The Art Society

Well lit with huge windows and skylight,

S L Hadankar, Shri Hebbar, Shri B V Talim,


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and Smt. Prafulla Dahanukar . He adores his

photographic. They have that touch of


association with The Art Society of India,

the artist where the ardent proficiency of

Gayatri Mehta is a professional artist who

where he has contributed a great deal for

handling his medium, be it oil paint or soft

creates allegorical compositions and

more than sixty years in various capaci-

pastels; his compositional perfection; his

subjects of everyday life in representational

ties as President, Committee Member and

use of somber colour schemes and also the

manner. She is currently the Jt .Secretary


vision to capture the passing expressions of

for the Bombay Art Society and on the

My passion for portrait painting was

the sitter make his portraits inspiring and

working committee of The Art Society of

roused in my adolescent years. The art of

serve as guiding landmarks to beginners


portraiture was always a fascination. To

and professional and to academic portrait

me it was an art form of ultimate perfec-


tion. I always feel that the camera captures

In an era of modernity, where tempta-

similarity of a person in a fraction of time;

tions are alluring, he passes the baton of

but, when an artist creates a representa-

representational art (which imbues dedica-

tion with much longer time and effort, it

tion and relentless hard work), to contem-

personifies the character of the sitter and

porary masters, with tremendous success

also the expression of the artist. That is why,

and satisfaction of honesty still glowing on

may be still, all around the world, portraits

his face at the age of 100. We, the art frater-

are painted and appreciated everyday.

nity are celebrating his birth centenary at

I am inspired by Shri V A Mali’s dedica-

Coomarswamy Hall, Prince of Wales Muse-

tion to painting portraits relentlessly for so

um, Mumbai on August 22, 2011 to salute

many decades. His portraits have tremen-

the living legend for all his efforts and con-

dous similarity to the models but are never

tributions. Everyone is welcome JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 81

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homas Balsley Associates (TBA), creators of some of America’s most acclaimed urban parks and public

spaces, have applied their unique landscape sensibility to a different kind of project, now open in midtown Manhattan – a 1,500-square feet, gem-like courtyard at the Intercontinental New York Times Square Hotel.

The garden’s sculptural focal point is a metallic sapling cluster whose form strikes a compelling dialogue with its Zenlike environment.

terns across the ground plane that has been detailed in bright white-washed riverstones. Subtle concealed LED lighting accents the composition elements throughout the day and evening. Other “layers” of the landscape include a series of staggered, sheared boxwood hedges beside a floating stone bench; the

comes hotel guests as they walk into and

bench itself adrift in a white-washed field of

Located in the centre of the vibrant

around the lobby. Deceptively simple, the

river stones that recalls the rock karesansui

Times Square entertainment district, this

courtyard is actually comprised of a series

gardens of Japan. This dynamic landscaped

hotel is a convenient base for well-travelled

of strategically layered landscape features,

theatrical backdrop is set off against a lami-

tourists and various guests from around the

all of them conceived and orchestrated by

nated granite wall and a line of tall illumi-

world. The building’s lobby is intended as a

Thomas Balsley.

nated bamboo in stainless steel planters.

respite from the hustle-bustle of the street,

The garden’s sculptural focal point is a

Working together as an ensemble, these

and the courtyard serves as its serene cen-

metallic sapling cluster whose form strikes a

various layers of composition provide a


compelling dialogue with its Zen-like envi-

sense of depth and frame the views from

This private “vest-pocket” park (as the

ronment. With an illuminated red resin wall

the reception lobby as well as from the

TBA team calls it) first becomes visible

as its backdrop, a constructed metal tree

hotel restaurant and lounge on either side,

through a window just beyond the check-in

clump appears to occupy an island floating

with perspectives that vary and shift from

desk. In a conscious attempt to subtly catch

in the zero-edge reflecting pool. Bamboos

room to room – making every visit a differ-

attention, it seems an oasis of tranquility

in a stainless planter, dwarf boxwood and a

ent experience.

afloat in the interior that entices and wel-

laminated granite wall strike dramatic pat-

Says Balsley, “This courtyard is designed


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Landscape design

THE ZEN APPEAL Words: Shekkhar Viswanathan; Images: courtesy TBA

Reflecting Thomas Balsley’s mission of enriching our urban experience is this landscaped oasis in the middle of Times Square. to oxygenate the hotel, both literally and figuratively. The Zen-like space offers a visual and spiritual retreat to the hotel’s guests as they retreat from the city’s bustle and serves as a visual feature for the premium restaurants that book-end the court.” For over 35 years, TBA has reshaped urban space around the world by designing landscapes that teem with public life, and are a source of civic pride. A graduate of Syracuse University and the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Balsley lectures and teaches at universities around the world including Harvard’s Graduate School of Design, the University of Pennsylvania, the National Building Museum and Seoul National University. For a firm the Intercontinental courtyard shows TBA’s artistic muscle at a fine-grain level. The same civic-minded spirit that is reflected in projects like Dallas’ Main Street Garden, Tampa’s Curits Hixon Park, and Manhattan’s new Riverside Park South is in evidence here, continuing Thomas Balsley’s nearly four-decade mission of beautifying and enriching the urban experience and his belief that, “Public open spaces are the great democratic spaces, the ultimate common ground” JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 83

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Photo feature


LIGHTS Light dispels darkness and vice-versa. But, when the two get together, they produce brilliant patterns; shapes and textures, forms and characteristics are at play. Bangalore-based PhotoJournalist Cleo captures patterns created by light and dark. We find mundane things like curtains, shadows on the wall, city lights from a mountaintop, fire crackers so on and so forth, taking on a different dimension in the shadows of light and darkness.


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Thousands of years of Indian ethos, put together in a small hotel, the first of its kind in the world! The 14 rooms are virtual art installations, each based on a ‘Character’ (Ravana, Ashoka, Buddha) or ‘Characteristic’ (Sensuality, Love, Purification) from a theme in Indian culture; where every inlay and artifact tells its part of the room story. Dine at the award winning restaurants Out of the Blue, Olive Bar and Kitchen and Deliciaethe dessert café. Gallery space for Art shows, Supper Theaters, Promotions & Events...

14, Union Park, Khar (w), Mumbai-400052. Tel: 91 22 32511447, 26492995/7 Email: Web:

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for all your interior needs indeed, it can only be described as a dream come true. stellar, india's premium home finishes showroom will stock the finest of kitchen trimmings, bathroom embellishments, hardware, veneer, plywood, designer tiles & wooden flooring under one roof that'll make your dreams come alive in brick and mortar. spread over 15,000 sq.ft to pick the most exclusive fixtures and accessories for world-class projects that can only do with the very best. please make it for the first look of what will soon be your preferred destination.

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Words: Savitha Hira; Images: courtesy Studio Symbiosis

Studio Symbiosis spearhead their design of a new multi-programme stadium at Raebarelli, pledging rural India a sporting showground with cutting-edge design standards.


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Infrastructure design JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 95

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espite the miasma that surrounds

system is said to be a unique experiment,

houette conceptualized on the ripples that

political activities in India, one

unparalleled in the annals of school educa-

pebbles create when thrown into water.

cannot ignore the progressive

tion in India. Their most recent project in

This simple delightful activity is defined into

steps that are bridging the urban-rural

the development of infrastructural facilities

a large sports complex that accommodates

divide; albeit very gradually. One such

at Raebarelli is a multi-programme stadium

a variety of gaming zones for cricket, foot-

effort from the Navodaya Vidyalaya Samiti

called ‘Athletic Ripples’. It is conceptualized

ball, kho-kho, lawn tennis, hockey, volley-

(an autonomous organization under the

by Amit Gupta and Britta Knobel Gupta of

ball, basketball and badminton in addition

Ministry of Human Resource Development,

Delhi-based Studio Symbiosis, with the

to an athletics running track, indoor game

Department of Secondary & Higher Educa-

focus on cutting-edge contemporary archi-

hall, swimming pool, dormitories and guest

tion, Govt of India.), is the proposed sta-



dium facility at Raebarelli in Uttar Pradesh.

Emerging from the landscape and

A central linear and landscaped pedes-

Targeted specifically at equipping tal-

merging into its environs, the 31,000 sq. m.

trian zone instills a feeling of being in a

ented rural children with the means to

stadium is spread on a site area admeasur-

green sports complex as it circumambu-

compete with their urban counterparts on

ing 1,00,000 sq. m. The programmatic is

lates the varied trajectories, interweaving

an equal footing, the Navodaya Vidyalaya

developed along a single continuous sil-

the activity zones with an inherent quality

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of interaction. Conceptually, these program-

nomics of the project. Exposed concrete

mix of solar panels and pneumatic panels on

matic zones are treated as individual rippled

is being proposed for the stadium exterior

the roof to maintain the required light inten-

pools effecting pebbles dropped in water.

along with a steel grid roof. Piezoelectric-

sity inside the stadium. The flooring of the

Each zone from 1,000 sq. m. to 20,000 sq.

ity is being looked into to be applied on

entire project, too, will be a combination of

m. is independent in its identity and born

the landscape pavers whereby the system

kota stone, landscape pavers, piezoelectric

out of a simple pool of ripples. Each of these

will harvest the kinetic energy generated

tiles and natural landscaping, wholesomely

ripples come together to form the entire

by crowds and will be effective in areas of

catering to sustainable design.

complex, where it is the inference of the

heavy foot traffic. On a similar principle of

The highlight of the project is the intri-

water field that thus creating ripples, gives

sustainability, solar cells are proposed for

cately woven nature of the programmes

a guideline to the formal design language

the roof to harness the abundantly avail-

and the way they interact with each other

of the project. All along, a strategized differ-

able solar energy. Without compromising

on site and with the landscape. The focus of

ence in levels is used to create seating in the

on the design aesthetic, only a certain per-

the design is the user himself.

landscaping itself.

cent of the roof panels will be designed as

With the foundation stone just laid in

Materials have been carefully selected

solar panels and integrated into the roof as

February 2011, the projected timeline for

to maintain the aesthetic quality and eco-

a design feature. In fact, there is a proposed

completion is slated at approx. 3 years

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FOOD OF LOVE How does a confection become an aesthetic tool? We find out. Words: Sheena D’Lima


f you’re a woman, or a man not afraid

Celebrity Chef Nikhil Chib, whose res-

you like to get out there and get some

taurant Busaba in Mumbai serves a mean

mud on your jersey too!), there are nine out

chocolate fondant, believes that the key

of ten chances that you will already have

reason why chocolate stands out visually

watched the film Chocolat, where a god-

is the “colour and texture”. Chocolate, he

fearing, conservative little French village

believes, made the quick crossover from

turns into a sensual, chocolate-celebrating

being a desert to a tool for visual appeal,

fiesta. Chances are you’ll also remember

only because as a substance it has no

trying to decide whether you liked the

dearth of opportunity for creativity. “Choc-

movie for Johnny Depp or for the quantities

olate chips, streaks, a dash, chocolate flakes

of chocolate luxuriously laid out in every

– these are all about the visual,” he says.

scene. We’ll take a wild guess and say that chocolate won. We’re sorry, Mr. Depp!

Gourmet design

Design Matrix_July-Aug11.indb 101

of chocolate in food gets upped every day.

of his feminine side (yes, yes we know

Rebecca Vaz, owner of Mumbai-based The Baking Tray disagrees, “Anticipation

Chocolate is talked about all the time.

works when it comes to the presentation

Food fads come and go, but chocolate

of an entrée. We know what chocolate

is an eternal favourite; it holds a timeless

looks like; so when we see it arranged in

mystique. The press has given it a glamour

some way on a plate, we know what we

representing it repeatedly in art, theatre

will taste just by looking at it.”

and film; the health-conscious ruefully term

Belgian Chocolate cigarellos, choco-

it a weakness of the most tempting kind;

late curls, chocolate roses and chocolate

people claim that it is the closest substitute

leaves, panatelas and triangles are a few

to love and romance and medical experts

of the conventional uses of chocolate as

swear by the magic it holds to prevent heart

visual add-ons. For decorations such as

disease and a variety of other ailments.

these, the chocolate used has to be just

Chocolate is all at once a drug, a mood

the right temperature, and the required

enhancer, an aphrodisiac and an irresistible

shapes and forms need to be moulded

indulgence. Though this substance, born of

with great precision and as little handling

the Cacao bean, contains compounds like

as possible. Vaz, who is something of a

theobromine and caffeine, which stimulate

genius when it comes to artwork in baked

pleasure activity in the brain, that’s not the

goods (The Baking Tray makes inventive

only part of its appeal. It’s a lovely bonus

theme cakes), tends to mistrust choco-

that apart from tasting like a slice of heaven,

late as a visual element in her cakes only

it’s a pleasurable sight, easier on the eyes

because of the softness of its texture,

than most foods.

which makes it melt easily. “I mostly use

This premise is precisely why you’re

gum paste in my art work. Quick things

more likely to choose your dessert based

like chocolate swirls or leaves can be

on whether or not it has a million choco-

made and chilled, “she confirms, “All you

late stars sticking up artistically from a

need is a block of chocolate and a really

plain sponge cake; or why a white china

sharp knife.”

tray with a smear of dark chocolate sauce

No matter how much it is talked about,

on the corner is more appealing than one

much like The Beatles or sliced bread,

without. But such niceties are just the tip

Chocolate is an item that retains its appeal.

of the iceberg. Food experts are actively

Simply delectable, we can’t sing its praises

getting more creative with chocolate and

enough. Like the famous man said, “Love?

going by the looks of it, the aesthetic use

I’d rather fall in chocolate”

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LANKESH One of the most fascinating characters from Hindu mythology, Ravana has been artistically interpreted on the Tamas Guna floor of Le Sutra in Mumbai. Words: Babita Krishnan Images: courtesy Le Sutra

Arty techture 102 DESIGN MATRIX • JULY-AUGUST 2011

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e represents all that you should not do…he is evil and demonic… The primary antagonist character of the Hindu legend – Ramayana – Ravana is also known as the powerful king

of Lanka, who had ten heads. In the classic text, he is mainly depicted in a negative light, kidnapping Rama’s wife Sita, to claim vengeance on Rama and his brother Lakshmana. On the other hand, certain segment of Indian philosophers believe that Ravana and his ten heads depict his unmatched and thorough knowledge of the six Upanishads, four Vedas, ayurveda, political science and his ability to master the melodious Veena. An alternative interpretation is that he is guided by and does not have control over the five senses and five bodily instruments of action. Either way, Ravana is the ideal representative of the Tamas Guna that is colourful, opulent, intricate and erotic. It is also usually associated with excessiveness, and the person or object is immersed, attached and drowned in self-indulgence and gratification. Various artistic depictions and interpretations of the king mark this room. The witty and humorous doodling on the headboard is graphic designer Aviral Saxena’s imaginative approach of presenting the lost and found diary of Ravana. It is an illustration of Ravana’s thoughts, strategies and scornful impressions of self, adversary and tact. The painting by Anand Gadapa depicts Ravana in his avatars as demon king and sage holding a Veena surrounded by the nine planets at Mount Kailash, the holiest peak in the Himalayas, showcasing his mastery of music and control over planetary effects. The horns and scepter in the chair by Neil Dantas are a representation of Ravana as the notorious king of demons, while an abstracted artistic version of the Veena leg of the table speaks of Ravana’s prowess over the musical instrument and is created by Kishan Duriseti. But the most eye-catching of them all is the metal art work on the bathroom door done by Haribaabu Naatesan – the all-seeing eyes. He was also known to be a devout follower of Lord Shiva, a benevolent ruler and strategist of the highest order. Ravana therefore, could be summed up as a symbol of both, wickedness as well as wisdom. He has been burnt and worshipped for ages and will continue to be burnt and worshipped for ages to come. So




him intriguing or hate his guts, the

Ravana room at Le Sutra is definitely worth a stay for the sheer artistic impression it weaves

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The witty and humorous doodling on the headboard is graphic designer Aviral Saxena’s imaginative approach of presenting the lost and found diary of Ravana. JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 107

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Tech diary


HIGH The Hollywood blockbuster Small Soldiers proved that size doesn’t matter; the Tata Nano certified it. Now exploring the Tata Pixel…

Words: Himanshu Hiranandani; Images: courtesy Tata Motors

here are some things money can’t

sporty new look when seen with the naked

buy; for the rest, in today’s world

eye. But under the microscope of a car and

you have to think twice even before

tech enthusiast, it is an eye opener where

using a MasterCard. With rising prices, infla-

amazing technologies have been incorpo-

tion’s unkind hand has discoloured the

rated into a small car.

fabric of society. Yet, a commodity that

Coming back to where I started, infla-

has emerged victorious in its upkeep and

tion is not the only thing on a high. Tech-

outreach is the harvest of the automobile

nology in automobiles is a recent, yet very

industry. Today, you can see cars that vary

interesting concept. It is not just limited to

from the age-old Maruti 800 to beautiful

AC’s, music systems and TV screens; it has

and elegant Bentley’s. In spite of inflation,

brought safety and luxury to the passenger

one company brought down the cost of

as well as the driver. The Pixel, designed for

cars targeting the common man who push-

the narrow lanes of Europe, would also be

es his way through busses and trains. The

a perfect car for the narrow roads in India.

initiative of a small cost-friendly car gave

This car is meant for tight spaces not just

birth to the Tata Nano. Entering Indian mar-

because of its name ‘Nano’, but because it

kets in the first half of 2009, “The Peoples’

boasts of a ‘Zero Turn toroidal traction-drive

Car” brought a new market to the automo-

Infinitely Variable Transmission (IVT)’ feature.

bile sector. Two years later, at the Geneva

This enables manoeuvrability and parking

Motor Show 2011, Tata unveiled its concept

of the vehicle and the ‘scissor’ doors rotate

of the new Nano Europa model – the Tata

upwards from the front to enable easy entry

Pixel. This new concept has lent the Nano a

and exit, even in the tightest spaces. The


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most astonishing aspect is the ability of the

reduced wastage of energy. The stop-start

speed you are travelling at, but also lets you

engine to rotate the outer wheel forwards

technology and intelligent battery charging

use the aforementioned tablet features. All

and inner wheel backwards during low-

provides enhanced fuel efficiency. The com-

in all, if your tablet or Smartphone has its 3G

speed manoeuvres. In addition, the front

pany claims a fuel economy of 3.4ltr./100km

activated, then this car is a dream-come-

wheel turns at acute angles, resulting in a

and CO2 emissions’ of just 89g/km.

true for any youth.

turning radius of just 2.6 meters for a car just over 3 m long.

The most attractive feature of this vehi-

With a profile that will scare few of

cle is the HMI – Human Machine Interface

the high-end luxury cars today, the Pixel

The Pixel has a youthful style, which

concept from Tata Motors that provides a

is surely one of the cars that the ‘Internet

is accentuated by its forward sweeping

high level of connectivity. The Pixel’s dash-

Generation’ is looking forward to. After

roofline and slightly jutting-out wheels. The

board is designed with a sleek mount for a

watching movies like Back to the Future

1.2 litre three-cylinder turbocharged diesel

tablet PC or a Smartphone that controls the

trilogy and the famous TV series Knight

engine, situated in the rear, provides ample

entire vehicle’s interiors. The Tablet PC or

Rider, Tata Motors has taken one more step

power and lively performance. This beauti-

Smartphone runs custom software by Tata

towards the future cars you’ve dreamed of.

ful little creature keeps the Tata workshop

Motors titled ‘My Tata Connect’. This allows

In addition to the Tata Pixel, Ford Motors

occupied as it adds even more features in

the driver to use the tablet or phone’s hard-

has also announced their concept car

the performance sector. The Pixel’s engine

ware to use basic features like music player

called the Ford Avatar, which revolves

has a low-friction design, featuring variable

and GPS. In addition, it enables the user

around all the features seen in movies. Last

coolant and oil pump, and rapid warm up.

with AC control and other basic tablet fea-

but not the least, the staggering Lambo-

Yet adding to the list of features is the opti-

tures like e-mail, web browsing and social

rghini ‘Sesto Elemento’ defines the mark

mized aerodynamic drag for better traction

networking. An innovative design for the

for future sports cars. With such mind-

at high speeds and low rolling-resistance

gauges includes the first-of-its-kind multi-

blowing concepts on the anvil, the future

tyres for optimized fuel efficiency and

mode display. This not only shows you the

of the automobile sector looks brilliant JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 109

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H C N LAU New Furnishings from


If you want to lend a tou ch of glamour to your inte riors, then the recent line Furniturewalla might be of furnishings from just what you need. Furnitu rewalla was founded in to offer a wide range of 1999 with a vision exquisite furniture that is both sophisticated and con of the products available temporary. Some in this line are Baroque leis ure chairs in gold leaf & laser cut cushioned chairs vel vet and leisure in wood with coffee tab le in stainless steel frame are available on request. & glass top. Prices ww


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Gumboots from


Tresmode has always bee n one of the stylish brands in the shoe world, and the y just took it up a notch. Their new rainwear collec tion consists of bright, cut e and practical pair of gum boots. Available in bright blue and baby pink, they have little stars embossed on them. They are lightwe ight and ensure that you can jump into as many pud dles as you like, without get ting your feet dirt y. Pul l them over your jeans or match them with a fun skir t and your set. Is there really a bet ter way to wa lk around this monsoon?


Chuck It collection by

Converse n the Converse has always bee th and you es ifi brand that person dy tren and ple sim ir fun with the tion, lec col new ir The rs. ake sne n Chuck It has recently bee per fect is and ia introduced in Ind y are The k. loo ve sua l for that coo e with com t tha s -on slip ple sim t and an upper mesh for comfor r feet you p kee l wil t ventilation tha her bot to e hav ’t don you s fresh. Plu re. mo with those pesky laces any of colours Available in a wide range metal se ver Con with the classic great a are es sho It ck rivets, Chu s. rain the for ent tem sta le sty ww


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Book Shelves from

The Great Eastern Home Readers will agree on two things. First, there’s nothin g like picking up your boo and losing yourself for an k hour or two; second, a good, sturdy bookcase good library can fill you or a with joy that is second onl y to reading. The Great Eas ern Home introduces a tclassic new range of clas sic book shelves. These shelves are made of ros book e wood and burma tea k. Grace and elegance are elements of the design key of these sophisticated boo kshelves. Give your library facelif t with these one-ofa a-kind book cases ww


The eagerly awaited April Showers 2011 Collection by Burberry has made it to India perfectly on time. This collection is for those who like to stay fashionable even as we get ready to brave the monsoons. Don’t let the dull rains bring you down, ditch the greys and blacks and try these bright waterproof shoes, wags, raincoats, boots, umbrellas and sunglasses. With designs that are trademark of the classic Burberry brand, these products are the one of the best rainwear money can buy.

April Showers 2011 by



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Fish Eye from

Chrome Hearts Eyewear

This season, the latest Fish Eye collection from Chrome Hearts Eyewear features a vintage silhouette in pure Titaniu m punch with twisted ends and sterling silver Chr ome Hearts decor cap. Chrome Hearts Eyewe ar, known for its luxury accessories that fea ture Fleur-de-lys, dagger and floral cross design s, are simply the most innovative eyewear in the market today. The Fish Eye collection from Chrom e Hearts brings in the fascination for Black, Wh ite and Gold and adds to it, a touch of sophistica tion and chic. This collection is a retake on the classics: Sleek blacks and cool whites. ww w.chromeheartseyew

Canapes Duviver from


Pallate, the unique design super studio, has just intr oduced Canapes Duvivier furniture. The use of high-q – a range of sleek uality leather sets these chairs apart, in terms of com most other international for t and finish from brands. Canapes Duvivier has been awarded the “NF whole leather range and Prestige Label” for its all its models, guarantee d for exceptional quality is recognized and cer tified professionals. Spruce up by your interiors with this dos e of sophistication. ww


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Spring Summer Collect

ion 2011 from


The new Wrangler Spring Summer collection 2011 is designed specifically the adventurous, wear and for run kind of woman. This latest collection from the adrenalin-fuelled iconic denim brand is called ‘Tru e Wanderers’, and is the essence of bold yet cas ver y ual. The clothes blend com for t and functionality wit unmatchable style. Strikin h g photo prints on tee shir ts, cargos with extra poc and super-washed khakis kets all make their way into this collection. Red, white and blue dominate the colour range this time. ww

The i2i™ chair from Steelcase will be a boon for the Indian workspaces. The chairs are designed for social, economic, and environmental sustainability. The i2i supports a variety of postures through its dual swivel mechanism that allows users to swivel the seat and back together or swivel either the back or the seat. It also includes an optional swivel return cylinder. The flexing back features moulded “fingers” that support back movement and recline, for comfort.

Chairs from



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Entries from across the country were invited, with the only criterion for judgment being how best the artist could utilize the gallery for the day allotted to him.


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Art review



17 days of diverse art forms and interactive sessions brought forth a heavy outpouring of contemporary art at Mumbai’s littlest gallery of fine art… Words: Akhil Sood; Images: courtesy Pradarshak


years ago, an idea was conceived; a vision was

made especially for the exhibition. A composition of 13 white eggs

developed and an eclectic art gallery called Pradarshak

on a red sheet of paper, which served to add a sense of disturbance

was born. Restricted to the confines of merely 60 sq. ft.

and disorder; it had one golden egg perched atop a flight of 17

of space, Pradarshak has been acclaimed as the smallest art gallery

steps to signify success. “The white eggs,” he explains, “are symbolic

in India and has over time, come to be recognized as one of the

of the common man, who is constantly struggling to achieve

finest platforms for upcoming artists in the country. The gallery,

something. The golden egg is emblematic of Pradarshak, which has

which lies quaintly tucked behind the drooping branches of a fern

reached such a high stature through its dedicated work.”

tree – its majestic shade protecting the gallery from the rigours of

Sujatha Bhandarkar’s sketches using pen and ink, served as a

the world outside – exudes a sense of cosy comfort, and a space to

reminder of the imperial beauty behind the frenzy buzz that resides

breathe and soak in the mesmerizing quality of art on display.

in the city of Mumbai. She also included an informal interactive

From June 6th to 24th, the gallery hosted an elaborate exhibition

session with the ‘spirit of the city’ – a dabbawaala while exhibiting

showcasing myriad artistic talent as part of its 17th anniversary

her works. The exhibition also witnessed several exceptional

celebrations. Titled ‘17 Days - 17 Artists’, entries from across the

installations, with Samar Singh Thakur creating a whirlpool

country were invited, with the only criterion for judgment being

suspended mid-air by a wire; Indore’s Rahul Solanki showcasing

how best the artist could utilize the gallery for the day allotted to

miniature autorickshaws decorated in effervescent paper collages;


and a balloon floor-graphic created by Shreyas Shrikant capturing

Curated by Lalit Hira, a designer and co-founder of the gallery,

“unseen impressions”. Another engaging event was Sanjay Kumar’s

the exhibition showcased an assorted mix of conventional styles

intricate charcoal paintings revolving around the mesmerizing

of art as well as interactive sessions and installations designed in

aura of Buddha. This contrasted with his rendition of poetry based

honour of Pradarshak. Of the several ‘highs’ during this celebration,

on the motif of lies as a misnomer and an actual representation


‘water sculptures’ (on June 9 ) was an innovative concept that

of significant truths. All along, the gallery also showcased some

was devised as part of the collaboration between Lalit and

brilliant paintings and sculptures. Although one day per artist could

Sumeet Singh, a budding photographer. It involved the audience

be termed a very short duration to reach out to the true lover of

playing with water from different levels and angles, with Sumeet

art, the spirit of celebration was high amongst all involved – the

perceptively capturing the motion on a high-speed camera,

gallerists, artists as well as the steady stream of well-wishers and

rendering an intuitive design and structure to water and giving it

buyers who seemed to equally love the concept. As the proprietor

a tangible shape and form. June 11th showed Pune-based Rajendra

sums up, “The response has been very moving for us. At the end of

Poudel’s charcoal ‘horses’ and his first independent installation

the day, we want to reach out and promote what we believe in” JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 121

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SPATIAL CONCEPTS In her latest furniture designs, Zaha Hadid explores the sculptural sensibilities and formal dynamics of a balanced relationship between solids and voids... Words & Images: Courtesy Zaha Hadid Architects


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nternationally acclaimed for her theo-

mass of traditional wooden furniture to

retical and academic work, architect,

the minimal thickness of plastic surfac-

artist and product designer Zaha Had-

es. The design refers to geometries and

id continues to sustain experimentation

mathematics of minimal surfaces – those

with cutting-edge technology in her re-

which are equally bent in all directions,

cent furniture designs – the Sketch Chair

having zero average curvature and the

for Sawaya & Moroni contemporary furni-

smallest area spanning a given contour.

ture and Minimal Shelf for Magis, Italy.

The design uses the geometrical char-

While the design of the Sketch or

acteristics of each module to generate

Z-Chair summarizes the essence of con-

a high degree of variation and composi-

temporary design and the research devel-

tion. The ornamental aspect is derived by

oped by Zaha Hadid Architects over the

structural and geometrical properties of

last three decades, TIDE – the modular

the module itself.

shelving system is conceptualized from

The concept here is based on the

the study of minimal surfaces.

theory that un-bordered minimal sur-

Known for her dynamic sketches,

faces have the property, whereby each

Zaha’s Z-Chair is a simple three-dimen-

the elegance of the composition and its

point is the centre of a small patch that

sional gesture that zigzags in the space as

articulation is negotiated through a subtle

behaves like a soap film relative to its

part of the continued discourse between

play of contrasting angular corners and

boundary contour. Physical models of

form and function, elegance and utility,

wide, smooth curves. The resulting form

area-minimizing minimal surfaces can be

differentiation and continuity. Geometric

echoes the calligraphic gestures of Hadid’s

made by dipping a wire frame into a soap

abstractions inform the design’s linear loop,

two-dimensional works; a controlled brush

solution, forming a soap film, which is a

which is articulated along its path in a lan-

stroke on a canvas, the perfect synthesis of

minimal surface whose boundary is the

guage that alternates thin wire streams and

an idea: the sketch.

wire frame.

large surfaces to provide both ergonomic

TIDE on the other hand, is a modu-

The two furniture concepts were

affordances and inherent stability to the

lar lightweight shelving system, which

exhibited at the Salone del Mobile at

overall shape. The dichotomy between

embodies the transition from the heavy

Milan Fair 2011


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International Stationery and Office Products Fair International Stationery and Office Products Fair, Tokyo, is an opportunity for seri-

Date: July 7th-10th

that is expecting over 500 exhibitors and

Venue: Grunwalder Freizeitpark, Munich,

1,000 visitors.

Germany Date: July 12th-14th

all over the world. As the world’s second

Building & Home Improvement Show

largest market for stationery, office prod-

Building & Home Improvement Show is an

Texworld USA

ucts and gift items, the Japanese market is

exhibition covering everything from kitch-

Texworld USA is the one of the most promi-

vast. A great number of retailers, dealers,

ens and bathrooms, air conditioning, appli-

nent trade fair devoted to apparel & fabric

wholesalers, manufacturers, importers,

ances, energy efficiency and solar power, to

industry. Large number of exhibitors of cot-

exporters, buyers and corporate users are

finance and insurance, flooring, furniture,

ton, denim, embroidery, fibres, functional

expected. Exhibits will includes writing

heating products, home decor, home ser-

fabrics, knits, lace, linen, prints, silk, silky

instruments, paper products, stationery,

vices, home technology, hurricane pro-

aspects, and wool will be participating from

electronic products, office accessories,

tection, landscaping and gardens, light-

across the world to showcase their latest

files, drawing instruments, office furni-

ing, outdoor living and leisure, pools and

products. It is the perfect place to explore

ture, briefcases, designers’ equipment,

spas, roofing, security, windows and doors

textiles of inventive structures, material

calligraphy sets, ecological stationery,

and more. A one-stop show for all home

mixes and shade palettes. Designers will

novelty goods and more.

improvement needs.

be provided with opportunities to expand

Date: July 8th-10th

their business.

ous professionals to come together from

Venue: Pragati Maidan, New Delhi, India

Date: July 6th – 8th

Venue: Adelaide Showground, Adelaide,

Venue: Tokyo, Japan


Home and Garden Munich Home and Garden Munich offers latest

India International Garment Fair

information about goods and techniques

The 47th India International Garment Fair,

being used in the field of flowering, gar-

dedicated to the apparel and clothing

Interior Design Workshop by AVID

dening and home decoration and will also

industry, will provide a platform to explore

Avid-The School of Continuous Learning

host a beautiful flower show. Exhibitors

the newest designs and technologies in the

will be opening doors to designers of inven-

from the field of gardening and flowering

fashion industry. Everything from jackets,

tive design. The Interior Design workshop is

decoration, such as municipalities, garden

shirts, shorts, skirts, trousers, blazers, blous-

an excellent opportunity to learn about the

designers, home decorators, event com-

es and cardigans to fur wear, denims, knit

three important functions while designing

panies, marriage bureaus, people from the

wear, leather wear, bridal wear and clothes

your space; Automation, Air conditioning

landscaping field, exporters of flowers and

for ladies, men and children will be on dis-

and Home entertainment. These sessions

home remodeling equipment will partici-

play. A chance to interact, gain perspective

will expose the participants to products

pate. The event will be held at the beautiful

and build networks, fashion traders as well

currently available in the market and prom-

amusement park of Grunwalder.

as fashion buffs will benefit from this event

ises to give some basic idea on how you

Date: July 19th – 21st Venue: Jacob K Javits Convention Center, New York, USA


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can make choices, which will conform to

trends in the industry. The most talked

trade fair for international textiles, yarn, fab-

your needs

about participant this year is JACUZZI USA.

rics and similar industry. This 3-days long fes-

International tennis super-star Leander Paes

tival will showcase needlework, or art activi-

will also be present at the expo.

ties like decoupage, quilting, teddy bear and

Date: July 20th-22nd Venue: Textiles Committee Building, Mumbai, India

Bangalore Fashion Week

doll making, tapestry, paper craft, sewing, Date: Aug 10th- 12th

cross-stitch, stenciling, stamping, weaving,

Venue: Pragati Maidan, New Delhi

embroidery, spinning, painting, knitting and many more. Training and courses involving

to create a bridge between the designers

Shanghai International Construction Material and Indoor Decoration Exhibition

and consumers in India and abroad. Casual

The Shanghai Building Materials Industry

Venue: The Ranch - Larimer County Fair-

wear, wedding wear, evening wear gar-

Association and World Expo Group Shang-

grounds, Fort Collins, USA

ments and textiles, fashion accessories and

hai Modern International Exhibition Co., Ltd.

related products, jewelry, handbags, shoes

plan to organize a one-stop exhibition - the

will be on display. This event is expected to

22nd Shanghai International Construction

The Courier-Mail & the Sunday Mail Home Show

give a great impetus to the fashion industry.

Material and Indoor Decoration Exhibi-

The Courier-Mail & the Sunday Mail Home

Fashion professionals, wholesalers, retailers,

tion. The show focuses on the theme of

Show is a trademark event for home decora-

department stores, chain stores, boutiques,

energy-saving, water-saving, land-saving,

tion innovative products. Building products,

importers and manufacturers and the gen-

materials-saving and environmental pro-

financial products, furniture and furnishings,

eral public will be attending.

tection, development trends in building

kitchens, garages and carports, pergolas and

materials featuring environmental-friendly,

shade, security, solar power, spas, swimming

Date: July 28th-31st

eco-healthy and comfortable products.

pools and more will be on display. The event

Venue: Hotel Matthan, Bengaluru, India

Construction materials, such as energy-

is likely to provide entrepreneurs and new

saving and insulation materials, roof system,

companies a chance to interact and work

solar energy, machines, villa equipment,

alongside many established brands and

wooden structure, heating systems and

companies. Some established names like

indoor decorations will also be displayed.

Advanced Termite Control, Avante Bedding,

Bangalore Fashion Week is a big annual event introduced to provide a platform for Indian designers. The Fashion Week hopes

WAVES Pool-Spa-Bath International Expo 2011 WAVES is a must-attend event for India’s HNIs, architects, interior designers and

craft, art or needlework, craft kits, magazines and books will also be available. Date: Aug 19th-21st

Australian Timber Ceilings, Austart Homes

builders. The event will include exhibitors

Date: Aug 17th-20th

Brisbane, Chesterbuilt Renovations, Creative

and guest speakers from countries like the

Venue: SNIEC, Shanghai, China

Sleepers etc. will also be participating.

USA, Germany, Australia, Spain, France, UK, pants to share and exchange information,

Rocky Mountain Quilt Festival

ideas and tips as well as discuss the new

Rocky Mountain Quilt Festival is a unique

Dubai and India. WAVES promises partici-

Date: Aug 28- Sept 4th Venue: RNA Showgrounds, Brisbane, Australia JULY-AUGUST 2011 • DESIGN MATRIX 127

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Pg. 13: Travette Engineered Hardwood Flooring

Pg. 93: Stellar

Agar Bazar S. K. Bole Road, Dadar (W), Mumbai 400028. Tel: (022) 24318444/555

MRJ Marketing Pvt. Ltd.

Jubille Hills, Hyderabad 500073

9/b, k, Laxmi Ind. Estate, New Link Road,

201, Shyam Kamal ‘C’ Bldg., Agarwal Market,

Tel: (040) 663800007/66480007

Vile Parle (E), Mumbai – 400057.


Versova, Andheri (W), Mumbai – 400053. Tel : (022) 26327733 / 34

Tel : (022) 26187132 / 26131442

8-2-293/k/308, Main Road, Kamalapuri Colony,


Pg. 110 & 111: Bright Outdoor Media Pvt. Ltd.

Pg. 1: Ebco

Pg. 19: Durian Office Furniture

402-3, Hyde Park, Saki Vihar Road,

401, The Chambers, Western Express Highway,

Mumbai 400072

Vile Parle (E) Mumbai 400057

Tel: (022) 67837777 Fax: (022) 66920700

Tel : (022) 26269000

New Link Road, Andheri (W), Mumbai 400053



Tel: (022) 67140000


8th floor, Crescent Tower, Near Maurya House,

Pg. 3: Durian Home Furniture 401, The Chambers, Western Express Highway, Vile Parle (E) Mumbai 400057 Tel : (022) 26269000 Email:

Pg. 25: Le Cdeor MRJ Trading Pvt. Ltd.

Pg. 118: Faus Laminated Flooring

201, Shyam Kamal ‘C’ Bldg., Agarwal Market,

MRJ Marketing Pvt. Ltd.

Vile Parle (E), Mumbai – 400057.

201, Shyam Kamal ‘C’ Bldg., Agarwal Market,

Tel : (022) 26187132 / 26131442

Vile Parle (E), Mumbai – 400057.


Tel : (022) 26187132 / 26131442 Email:

Pg. 4: GODS

Pg. 31: Surface Décor (India) Pvt. Ltd.


Abdul Satar Lakdawala Compound,

W. E. Highway,

Pg. 125: FINfloor Laminated Flooring

Besides TATA Motors, Jog-Vikroli Link Road,

MRJ Marketing Pvt. Ltd.

Jogeshwari (E), Mumbai 400060

201, Shyam Kamal ‘C’ Bldg., Agarwal Market,

Tel: 28362424 / 28242424

Vile Parle (E), Mumbai – 400057.

Pg. 6: The Art Lounge

Tel : (022) 26187132 / 26131442

Hodiwala Bhatehena & Co


Churchgate, Mumbai 400020

Pg. 55: Heritage Decorative Laminates

Tel: 22878787

Deco Mica Pvt. Ltd.

I B C: Durian Veneers


306, 3rd Floor, Iscon Mall, Star Bazaar Bldg.,

401, The Chambers, Western Express Highway,

Jodhpur Cross Road, Ahmedabad - 380 015

Vile Parle (E) Mumbai 400057

3, J. Tata Road, HP Petrol Pump, Near Ritz Hotel,

Pg. 7: VITA Vitrified Tiles 383 – A, Vasu Smiriti, Flat No.4, 1st Floor, 13th Road, Khar(W), Mumbai : 400 052. Tel : 022- 42367900/909

Tel : (022) 26269000

Pg. 65: Delta Olympic Laminates Pvt Ltd


6, Patel Avenue, 1st Floor, Near Gurudwara, S.G.Highway, Ahmedabad – 380059. Tel: + 91 – 79 - 40017979

B C: Ultratech Paints & Textures F 213A/1, Lado Sarai, Old M. B. Road, New Delhi – 110030

Pg. 12: Design Matrix Ultratech Excellence Awards

Pg. 92: Le Sutra

Tel: (011) 46061549/50

14, Union Park, Khar(W), Mumbai-400052.



Tel : 91 22 32511447, 26492995/7


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Design Matrix July-Aug 2011 issue  

a magazine about design and designers

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