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Modern Times

TABLE OF CONTENTS INTRODUCTION

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MODERNISM BEFORE INDEPENDENCE

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THE ECONOMIC BACKDROP TO MODERNISM

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AN ECONOMIC MODEL

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THE INDIAN ECONOMY

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THE NEHRU-MAHALANOBIS STRATEGY

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EXPLANATION

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CRITICAL ANALYSES THE ROLE OF THE STATE AND ITS IMPACT ON THE PRIVATE CORPORATE SECTOR

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ASPIRATIONS OF MODERNITY

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AFTER INDEPENDENCE

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MODERN ARCHITECTURE IN INDIA

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PARALLELS IN MODERNISM

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IMPACT OF ECONOMIC POLICIES ON ARCHITECTURE

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PWD DIRECTIVES

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UTILITARIAN MODERNISM

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EDUCATION CIRCUMSCRIBED BY MODERNIST PRESCRIPTIONS

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INTRODUCTION

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THE INVITATION TO THE EAMESES

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OBJECTIVE

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REPORT RECOMMENDATIONS

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THE REGIONALIST MODERNISM: REINVENTING THE LOTA

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S.P.A. DELHI, BORN FROM MODERNIST PRESCRIPTION

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FIRST PRESCRIPTION: THE BAUHAUS PEDAGOGY

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MULTI-DISCIPLINARY STRUCTURING

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CURRICULUM OF SCALE

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SECOND PRESCRIPTION (1946-1972): WESTERN INSTITUTIONS

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THIRD PRESCRIPTION (1972-PRESENT): EAMES REPORT

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THE ROSTER OF DISCIPLINES

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STUDENT ELIGIBILITY

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FACULTY ELIGIBILITY

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FUNCTIONS

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CURRICULUM PROCEEDINGS

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FOURTH PRESCRIPTION: RIBA

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MODERNISM PRESCRIBED DESIGN EDUCATION, CONCLUSION

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BUILDING THE HYPOTHESIS

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CONCLUSION

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LIST OF FIGURES

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LIST OF TABLES

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BIBLIOGRAPHY

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INTRODUCTION

Being modern is being up to date. With new technologies of communication in the 20th century India was exposed to the wider world. The developments and changes in return influenced the thoughts in the minds of the country on the brink of its Independence. Modernism is more in tune with a way of thinking and not just an architectural style. The underlying idea of modernism lies with the purpose of ‘form follows function’ which should dictate the design of anything. Purifying the design to bear no more unnecessary ornamentation th an required to function. This was a total departure from the obsession with historical revivals, from neo-rococo to neo-Gothic, that had dominated the Victorian years, and for centuries before. Modernism really dominated in Europe – where it was known as the International Style, or International Movement, particularly in Germany, with the Bauhaus Movement. It was not until after World War One, that the influence of modernism really began to dominate. As the ideas of modernism spread over the world, especially in North America a change in the architectural style became evident. The minimal ornamentation of the modernist approach was accompanied by the ‘Fordism’ prevailing in America which worked on the principles of mass production and standardisation of components. This drastically reduced the cost of production. Clubbed together the new idea of modernist architecture prevailed as being economical at the time of war stricken world and came off as a solution to the problems of the modern city.

In 1950s India saw itself recovering from the British rule and struggling to get a grip on its own administration. The life of the people of the country were either marred by the violent partition or the harsh economic condition. Only gradually did the situation change and there was in improvement in the economic stability of the country. This decade saw an emerging need of a change in the sense of identity in people and that reflected in not just architecture but in the lifestyle of people as well. On one side the father of the nation was preaching the use of khadi and supporting the local vernacular industries while there happened a shift to a new style which was a convergence of modernity and nationalism.

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Discourses of development in India at that time were shaped by colonial constructions of linear time, teleological history, and the idea that Third World nations must follow the First World ones in their march towards “progress”. Modernity seemed to be an idea that was associated with improvement and development. ‘Modernism’ at this moment of time was misinterpreted as ‘Modernity’. Though there was a sensational force of redefining India by the intellectuals, there was also the urgent demand of providing basic services to a vast population. There was the notion and image of ‘progress’ and the existing directives of the construction industry. The “Modern” architecture arrived in India in the with the promise of solving the issue with its “universal” motto. It’s acceptance all across the world served as inspiration to the nation’s desire to be at par with the world and establish itself independently in the global context.

MODERNISM BEFORE INDEPENDENCE

The Modern movement in architecture started in India decades before the Independence. With the architectural explorations done in Shantiniketan, by Surendranath Kar, guided by Rabindranath Tagore. In relation to Shantiniketan there was also the exhibition of Modern Art in Calcutta in 1922. It primarily focussed on Modern Art with the works on Kandinsky and Paul Klee and less on the European Modernist Architecture. The exhibition set ground for the dialogue in new thought of visual arts and expression in India. Many firms in Calcutta and Bombay grew from neo-classicism and Art-Deco into new architectural themes.

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But much of the building activity in Delhi was restricted to the government buildings for the new national capital. Whereas the commercial building activities were restricted to the cities which offered patronage to the architects. These were mostly the major ports where the industrialists had the financial backup and the desire for exploration in a new way of architecture. The mill-owning families of Ahmedabad and the Banks in Chennai and Bombay and the private companies in Calcutta were the first to show influence of Modernist Architecture. In Delhi the first radical architects were Walter Sykes George and Arthur Gordon Shoosmith. Both had come to India to work under Edward Lutyens but later had a diverse approach to buildings than their mentor. These works were yet not classified as Modern, but they are seen as the first departures from the neo-classical approach prevalent in Delhi. Art Deco, which was the popular expression of the buildings in the 1930s and 1940s, which grew out of the Art Noveau movement in Europe (Lang, 2002) could be the first “Migrated Architectural Style� of the 20th Century in India. But the art form, although largely used by industrialists, was not highly regarded by neither the Indian nationalists, who saw it as too alien and by the Britishers themselves who found it to be too radical. At this time, many such buildings started to incorporate local character of the areas it was built in. They included traditional elements to jaalis, corbelling, overhangs and also the elements from Hindu and Islamic heritage (Lang, 2002). This period was later known as the Revivalist ideology. The trace of its influence in Delhi was the Ashok Hotel made in the 1950s. The reaction to this, even though revivalist in presentation, was quite the opposite in its spirit. It was the expression of the belief that the heritage, the text and the idea of architecture of the past would be able to show a way for the architectural expression on the present, the Modern Indian Architectural Movement(Lang, 2002), contradicting the Art Deco which only borrowed elements for ornamentation. Sris Chandra Chatterjee, who was in the forefront of this expression was motivated by the swadeshi movement referred to the Shilpa Shasta for inspiration (Gupta, 1991, cited in Lang, 2002). His work in Delhi, the Hindu Mahasabha Bhawan and the Laxmi-Narayan Birla Temple showed another direction towards architectural expression.

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THE ECONOMIC BACKDROP TO MODERNISM

AN ECONOMIC MODEL In economic literature, ‘state-intervention’ in an economy is the condition wherein economic activity is not market-driven. Such intervention is required to obtain resource allocation towards specific development goals. When a government deploys an economic model in a conscious effort to follow a definite pattern of economic development [presumably, to rapidly improve fundamental living standards], it is considered a ‘planning model’ (Ghatak, 1995). Economic planning is one of the main instruments of achieving a higher growth rate in less-developed countries (Kolawole, 2013), such as a newly independent India would have been. Thirlwall (1983) gives four basic types of models typically used: Macro or aggregate models of the economy consisting of a series of n equations representing the basic structural relations in an economy, for example, between factor (inputs) and product (output), saving and income, imports and expenditure. Sectoral models which isolate the major sectors of an economy and specify the interrelationships between sectors. Inter-industry models that show, in the form of an input-output matrix, transactions and interrelationships between producing sectors of an economy. Models for project appraisal-based resource allocation between industries. The model developed by Nehru’s chief economist Prof P C Mahalanobis was a sectoral model, initially devised for two and eventually four sectors of the Indian economy.

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THE INDIAN ECONOMY

THE NEHRU-MAHALANOBIS STRATEGY Mahalanobis was deeply influenced by the Soviet experience (Karmakar, 2012), Indianizing A G Feldman’s 1928 paper into an inward-looking economic strategy for the Second Five-Year Plan. [In the Feldman model, which was behind the Stalinist model, the output of wage goods and of agricultural commodities was kept constant. This pattern emphasized the network of building heavy industry for erstwhile USSR. This appealed to Jawaharlal Nehru because by modernisation of the Indian economy, Nehru meant industrialization (Karmakar, 2012).] First appearing as essays, the strategy was formally proclaimed in the Industrial Policy Resolution of 1956. It continued to serve as a planning guideline up to the Fifth (Five-year) Plan, which was terminated in 1978 by the Janata government.

EXPLANATION National income and investment were the variables in Mahalanobis’ single model. He then developed a two-sector model (1953) where the entire net output of the economy was to be produced in the capital goods sector(indicating heavy industrial equipment and machinery) and the consumer goods sector. He further gave the ratio in which investments were to be made – one-third of the total investment in the capital goods sector. The rationale behind this allotment is that a higher rate of investment on capital goods in the short run would make available a smaller volume of output for consumption in the short-term, but in the long run, would lead to a higher growth rate of consumption. (Kolawole, 2013; Mitra, 1957)

The model was then further expanded to four sectors – (1) Capital goods, (2) Consumer

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goods, (3) Agriculture and cottage industry, and (4) Services, education, health and other public expenditures – while retaining the emphasis on capital goods. In addition, the model demanded that no direct investment take place in the consumer goods sector (Mitra, 1957). In order to reduce unemployment as much as possible, organized consumer goods’ industries (2) were to be discouraged by excise duties while labour-intensive handicraft industries (3) competing with them were to be encouraged by subsidies (Komiya, 1959). The model assumes a closed economy; capital equipment non-shiftable once installed in any of the sector; a full capacity production in both the consumer and capital goods sectors; determination of investment by the supply of capital goods; and no changes in prices. (Karmakar, 2012) The planning commission adapted the principles of the Mahalanobis model for the Second Five-Year Plan.

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Table 1: Allocation of public investment in the second five year plan

CRITICAL ANALYSES Heavy industry in the public sector was prioritized as the symbol of economic independence and crucial for the maintenance of political independence (Karmakar, 2012) The capital goods sector was emphasized so that India’s rate of accumulation (national savings) was independent of the growth of export earnings, enabling industrialization even under conditions of stagnant or slowly growing exports. [Under such conditions, foreign exchange needed to import capital goods was not available and consequently the country must develop its own capital goods sector. (Karmakar, 2012)] This approach was rooted in “export pessimism,” the belief that world markets would grow relatively slowly, and the terms of trade would be unsuitable for India’s primary export commodities. The large domestic market in India was expected to absorb the increased production. Exports were not regarded as a generator of growth; instead, they were understood to be a conduit for surpluses, were such surplus to be available. The disadvantage of this strategy was capital deepening, that is, the commitment of large amounts of investment to heavy industry, which is slow to yield returns. Cottage industry was identified as a potential producer of consumer goods, since it required little capital and was labour intensive. For the same reasons, however, one could not expect a significant savings in this sector, which would be required for future economic growth. (Karmakar, 2012) This policy of reserving certain segments of the manufacturing sector for small units would have had the obvious impact of not allowing for any potential economies of scale in those sectors, (Balakrishnan, 2007) and reducing the volume, and variety, of available consumer goods. As an accounting scheme, the Mahalanobis model was a supply-side model; with little consideration for the impact of consumer demand. It was a static mathematical model that converted raw materials into finished goods. (Sanyal, 2008) The input-output model was relevant for the Soviet union, in the form of a classical

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“command economy” where investment could be planned and enforced. In a ‘command economy,’ the surplus could be constantly reinvested to maintain a steady growth rate, for a period (Balakrishnan, 2007). The approach was based on a mechanical view of the world that disregarded the role of private enterprise. “The Mahalanobis model gelled with Nehru’s own Fabian Socialism but they were never likely to generate a self-sustaining dynamic of enquiry and risk-taking. There was no place in this model for the messy, organic process of risk-taking and innovation that drives economic progress.” (Sanyal, 2008) However, India had a ubiquitous private sector that invests only in response to or anticipation of profit, (Balakrishnan, 2007), and private investment is an equally legitimate component of aggregate investment in an economy.

THE ROLE OF THE STATE AND ITS IMPACT ON THE PRIVATE CORPORATE SECTOR A Soviet-inspired Planning Commission was established and series of Five-Year Plans were set in motion. (Sanyal, 2008) The post-colonial state adopted a role that was to have profound implications for private sector behaviour. On one hand, it intervened in the economy by raising public investment. On the other hand, it stifled the private sector as much as did the colonial Government of India. The public policy of the Nehruvian era had set in motion a more-or-less stagnant colonial economy. (Balakrishnan, 2007) Furthermore, the system was very unstable and prone to frequent macroeconomic breakdown—as demonstrated during the crises of 1966-67, 1974-75, 1979-80 and finally in 1991. Chibber has criticized India’s turn to development planning with the Mahalanobis model due to its central over-reliance on state intervention in markets. Public-sector monopolies were originally set up on the pretext that the Indian private sector was not mature enough to supply these goods and services. In many cases, however, the authorities created the public-sector monopolies by simply expropriating the private sector. (Sanyal, 2008)

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By the early eighties, the government controlled virtually the entire banking sector. Thus, the government effectively extended its control over all resource allocation within the country. The perception of a loss of economic freedom during the Nehruvian era is linked to the presence of controls, which, whether by design or default, came to be referred to as ‘socialism.’ (Balakrishnan, 2007) In some spaces of the economy, the loss of economic freedom in the Nehruvian era was indeed real. Emblematic of the restriction of freedom of enterprise was industrial licensing. Instituted with a view to channelling resources according to plan priorities, the ‘License Raj’ seriously limited the freedom to invest (including in capacity expansion) of the private sector. Private investment was mostly excluded from the utilities and much of infrastructure. To be precise, the reservation policy limited the freedoms of the private corporate sector. (Balakrishnan, 2007) The private sector was tolerated but strictly held in check by a Kafkaesque system of industrial licenses, while the public sector became the centrepiece of national policy. [The restrictions on the establishment and operation of a private-sector enterprise were equally tedious. Before making an investment, the entrepreneur was first required to get an approval in principle from the Ministry of Industry. If the ministry agreed, it issued a Letter of Intent. If he wanted to import machinery, for instance, he had to apply to the Chief Controller of Imports and Exports in the Ministry of Commerce. The approval for this was, however, given by a committee that was actually under the Ministry of Industry. If there was need for a foreign technology collaboration agreement, the businessman had to get an additional approval from a committee chaired by the Finance Secretary but serviced by the Ministry of Industry. if the entrepreneur also wanted to raise capital from the markets, he had to approach the Controller of Capital Issues. If he wanted raw material, he had to apply on an annual basis to the Commerce Ministry. After the enactment of the Monopolies and Restrictive Trade Practices Act of 1969 (MRTP), the harassed entrepreneur had to apply separately to the Department of Company Affairs for a separate MRTP clearance (Sanyal, 2008)] The capital goods sector received a severe blow after 1966. (Karmakar, 2012) Fast growing imports and stagnant exports strained the balance of payments (import

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cover on reserves dwindled to a little over two months). This coincided with a ‘lurch to the left’ characterized by increasing trade and industrial policy controls and the reckless expansion of public sector employment. (Balakrishnan, 2007) This process of nationalization accelerated after Indira Gandhi came to power in 1966. [Till the mid-sixties, IISCO (Indian Iron and Steel Company) was one of India’s most dynamic private companies (and a second largest steel producer after TISCO) with workers who were among the best paid in India. Ironically, production ceased between 1968 and 1972 following a series of trade union strikes and in 1972, it was taken over by the Govt as a subsidiary of SAIL.(Sanyal, 2008)] The momentum achieved towards higher productivity in India’s management sector in the period from 1955-65 was not regained until 1975. The Industrial Policy Statement was issued in 1980. the government decided to regularize capacity expansions that had taken place without the necessary licenses. the government decided to regularize capacity expansions that had taken place without the necessary licenses. Meanwhile, GDP growth too accelerated in the eighties to 5.4 per cent14 from the Nehru–Mahalanobis level of 3.5 per cent witnessed during the previous three decades. higher growth and tentative reforms, liberalization process began much before 1991 (Interestingly, this matches the period of in which most buildings appear on the tree in this study) The eighties growth-pattern proved unsustainable and ended in a serious external crisis. Despite these obvious shortcomings, the socialist economic system lasted till 1991— briefly surviving the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 and then collapsing along with the Soviet Union. [The proximate factor that tipped India into the balance-of-payments crisis was an increase in global oil prices due to the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in August 1990.] While the year 1947 represents a clean break from the past, 1991 is a turning point, the beginning of a process that goes on to this day.

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ASPIRATIONS OF MODERNITY

Modernism in 20th century India developed as a concept, was used within numerous stylistic developments. Starting with the efforts made by Europeans in the 1920s, the idea of “modern architecture” as a revolutionary and innovative force started to make cautious headway in India in the early 1930s although any Western thought at that time introduced as a British import was seen as “modern”, as there was no uniform architectural movement in India at the time. Ideas from the Bauhaus, Le Corbusier, the subsequent Art Deco movement and even neoclassical architecture were all counted as modern. Modernism at the time was not limited to just architecture but was also an overall approach to life. It meant designing the world positively, improving it, doing better than the required standard, being progressive and inventive, and this certainly included great visionary minds like Tagore and Nehru. British architects in India felt themselves to be modern, because they could work within an experimental field, almost without constraints and regulations, with an unusual degree of freedom The utilization of the new emerging media played a key role in the propagation of the idea of modernity. During the decade the emergence of Akashvani from All India Radio and

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Doordarshan and Vividh Bharti in television had a large viewership across the major cities in households that could afford television of course. As they were able to reach a large mass of the population, the idea of modernism and the modern lifestyle was depicted through television commercials and through movies. The 1978 drama movie Gaman depicts the life a poor man from a village moving to the city of Bombay in search of livelihood. The life depicted in the movie shows the city’s hustle bustle with modern office buildings and roads full of cars. The metropolis is the land of opportunities where the cycle of existence is inescapable. Muzaffar Ali delves on different facets of life in Bombay to illustrate the diversity, the rich and the poor sharing their pain and ecstasy, through the medium of a taxi. A rich businessman looking for carnal pleasures, the skyscrapers mocking at the neighbouring shanties, a Parsi passenger giving a comic but and telling discourse on the degeneration of values, the backseat conversations, pompous and sometimes self-deprecating, educating Ghulam on the challenges of life in a city, are some of the rich vignettes in this compelling narration.

Figure 1: Amul advertisement, Times of India 1968

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Figure 2: Linoleum advertisement, 1979

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Apart from the cinema depicting the city life ,the television commercials also, in order to prompt viewers to buy their products promoted a lifestyle which represented a changed and improved way of living and were a reflection of the new modern world itself. Simple details like sitting on a table for breakfast, using the kitchen appliances for preparation of food, enforced the idea of embracing modernism over traditions which were associated with being backward. The new modern lifestyle move away from the struggles of the previous decade and accepted new ways of comfort , dressing and use of technology in daily life.

Figure 3: A 1950s showroom in Bombay

A 1950s documentary on the then Bombay shows the buy metropolis in what seems like an urban jungle with modern buildings and even showrooms with big glass panels to lure customers. This establishes the fact that India was already accepting the idea of westernization to an extent.

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Figure 4: A 1950s showroom in Bombay

Figure 5: A busy crossing in Bombay 1950

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AFTER INDEPENDENCE After independence there were broadly three categories of classifying the firms in architecture. Firstly there were the conservative firms took to modernism. Second ere those who grew out of art deco and thirdly the architects who studied abroad and came back to India and established themselves. The first major building activity in Delhi, establishing the headquarters of the ministries align the Rajpath was taken up by the CPWD. They decided to build on the existing order of the urban design under the precedents set by Edward Lutyens and Baker in the President’s House, Parliament and India Gate. The attempt was to keep the character of the space as before. With the constraints of economy and the availability of skill, the CPWD was able to buildings following the Modernist principles with their massing and simple built form (Lang, 2002). The Vigyan Bhawan by R. I. Gehlote though used Revivalist elements from the Hindu, Mughal architecture as motifs was also based on the modern principles of design. The Supreme Court on the other hand took direct design influences from the Rashtrapati Bhawan by Lutyens. Juxtaposed to these was the international style of Modernism with its clean lines as used by Azad Bhawan for International Council of Cultural Relations, Designed by Achyut Kanvinde (Lang, 2002).

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MODERN ARCHITECTURE IN INDIA Concerns regarding the styles of architecture, its expression, policy and role in the Indian context led to the discussion between the professionals and the government which led to the ‘Seminar on Architecture’ in 1959. In the mid-20th Century, the infrastructure evolved to give the benefits of transport, communication and new techniques of building materials and technologies. With this the importance of looking at a building in the climatic context to also being “socially acceptable, visually attractive, functionally sound and economically feasible” (Moody, 1959). each building demanded a different design which could not have been “reproduced by a formula” (Moody, 1959). The CPWD works till after independence were limited to standard building which The new industrial policies demanded a new typology of the buildings to emerge. From the setting up of large quantities of small and large scale industries demanded specific architectural requirements. The demand was then of the able architect who could research the programme and then design. The dichotomy of an architect in a governmental framework was restrictive environment (Moody, 1959). This made the architects demand for the a framework within which he could take upon the role of designer who also decides on the tender, because he is the one who has the expertise on materials, building technology and the aesthetics. He also takes the role of the coordinator between the consultants of the building and also have his influence on the work at site. (Jhabvala, 1959). The ideological shift was from seeing the buildings from the ones that are decorated and ornamented to look Indian to come up with solutions for the condition of the day, the labour conditions, economic model, PWD laws and the material available. The buildings which copied direct elements and forms which had evolved in a different socio-cultural space without understanding the needs of India, were also highly condemned (Jhabvala, 1959). The question of a single style of architecture was considered critised along similar lines as each architect had his “own temperament” (Correa, 1959) which led to his own style.

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There was a demand for setting up of architectural institutions which sensitise the student towards all the roles of architecture and how they differ from the allied fields. Such institutions would also be given the responsibility of systematic research that reinforce the design thinking of a given time. (Vaidya, 1959).

PARALLELS IN MODERNISM After 1960s the architecture of India formed five parallel approaches towards architecture. The dialogue for what architecture of the independent India should represent, led to these styles. The first was the Modernist approach of the generation of architects who had studies in foreign universities . Habib Rahman, Achyut Kanvinde and others. They extensively worked with the government and created the much needed infrastructure in a functionalist manner. Their work represents Nehru’s vision on choosing a new vocabulary for an independent India. The second was the work of architect’s like Joseph Allen Stein and MM Rana, who following the of architects like Richard Neutra and F L Wright focussed on the sensitive approach towards the built environment. They designed for the micro-environments of the space their building was located in harmonised the building using traditional landscape and traditional elements. Stein’s work brought the idea of paying serious attention to the details of all aspects of the building including the construction process. Walter George in the bold expressions of his similar type of work also started the trend of using lightweight horizontal louvers as sun shading devices which was seen in many projects thereafter. Third was the direct influence of Corbusier’s work in Chandigarh. The vocabulary of exposed concrete and using skills of structural proficiency was clearly shown these building. Pandit Nehru supported Chandigarh as something which made people think and

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react. Not everyone liked Chandigarh but still it had it’s due impact on everyone who witnessed it. With intense commitment to his architectural principles, Shiv Nath Prasad’s Akbar Hotel and Shri Ram Centre at Mandi house also impacted the way architecture was seen in Delhi. Similarly, the IIT Delhi building of J K Choudhary and The Civic Centre in Delhi by Kuldip Singh because of their great visual contrast rose as important examples. The fourth approach was the using the language of exposed brick with concrete. Started with Pierre Jeanneret in Chandigarh, the style caught up in the rest of India. With plain plaster over the walls this style achieved greater sophistication and more refined details than it did in Chandigarh. The last was the rise in the regional building vocabulary. Local building material and skill of the particular region the building were used and the responding to the non-contextual ways of the modernism. This was also seen as a post-modernist step and was cited as Regionalism. Also the works in Alternative Building technologies became prominent at this period. Setting up of Laurie Baker’s building centre and Development Alternatives was a great step in acknowledging the regional context of the buildings. Prof Anil Laul, Ashok Lall have worked in these directions. Of these aspects of approach towards architecture, we see two peculiar languages of architecture that migrated to India which were completely new. This is what did change the direction of thought and brought in functionalism to India. Modernism was brought with Pandit Nehru calling Le Corbusier to design and plan Chandigarh. The other, is what Mallay Chatterjee called as the “International Style”, was the other migrated style which focussed on the aspect of the micro-environment of the building and integrated a holistic approach to the site the building was being built in, was only found in small pockets of Delhi, like in the works of Joseph Allen Stein and MM Rana. Buildings of MM Rana like the Bal Bhawan, the Nehru Museum, Nehru Planetarium, Shanti Van and Buddha Jayanti Park show his influence of the concept of the importance of landscape and its effect on the built-environment. Similarly the work of Stein has its own characteristics in terms of defining an vocabulary of modernism in Delhi.

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With such works also developing also in the context to Delhi, it is hard to categorize them into strictly Rational or Empirical, as no architect’s work is strictly in the domain of either one of the two disciplines. In the mid- 20th Century these two dialogues of Modern architecture started to be recognized all over the world. The first was the ‘Empiricist’ and the other was the ‘Rationalist’(Long A, 1997). Empiricism was represented by FL Wright and fellow architects in America and the similar thought was followed during in the Garden City movement of the Britain. The counterpart, Rationalism grew with the ideology of Bauhaus and the work of Le Corbusier. The Rationalist thought was conceived in Europe. By its principles, Rationalism allowed, only some, cultural deviations which could be adapted to suit climatic and regional variations of any space. The ‘Rationalist’ thought grew and overpowered its counterpart across the world (Long A, 1997). In India too, when the expression of national spirit in architecture was being searched for, the choice of the Rationalist architecture “overwhelmingly influenced the younger architects of the period” (Long A, 1997). The first generation of architects who trained in in the ideals of modernism were mostly inspired by the works and theories of Walter Gropius. They had a will to ‘invent the future’ of India, which is concurrent to the time of the world it was in. Well-documented works of Kanvinde, Ram Rahman and other master architects show their enthusiasm of this spirit. Cyrus Jhabvala, Ram Sharma, Charles Correa, Piloo Mody and may other who brought their creative spirit back to India owed to the Rationalist principles set by Gropius in their works of Modernism. The second generation of Rationalist architects were more inspired by Corbusier than Gropius. In the design of IIT Delhi, JK Chowdhury shows similarities to the buildings in Chandigarh with the loose gridiron plan with the buildings having the same geometry.

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IMPACT OF ECONOMIC POLICIES ON ARCHITECTURE

Architecture produces both sites of production (workspaces and spaces for delivery of produced goods) and consumption (housing and recreational spaces, for example). Further, products of the architectural process absorb large amounts of capital, rendering them non-transferable, displaying the characteristics of capital goods. However, these products of the architectural process are also conceivably ‘consumed’ by the end user but do not depreciate at rates typical of consumable goods, thereby becoming difficult to classify within a sectoral model. There are two ways in which a sector could be neglected. First, it could be ignored in the policy discourse itself, with insufficient attention devoted to its condition. Second, in the form of insufficient resources devoted to the expansion of a sector. (Balakrishnan, 2007)

In the absence of resource allocation framework designed for architectural processes, the architecture of post-independence Delhi drew from the infrastructure sector. A similar pattern emerged, heavy investment into public buildings, the returns from which came slowly. In contrast to what appears to be systematic disinvestment in building technologies, there were efforts to make resources available for infrastructural projects, and thus, the architecture seems to have come to rely on the sort of popular material, i.e reinforced concrete. While steel as a heavy industry in itself was heavily invested in, the emphasis lay on the production of industrial machinery for other industries, such as cotton mills, and not building components for the direct consumption by the construction sector which in turn led to the dependence on concrete as a building material (since building components made of steel would be directly utilised as a consumer good, rather than as machinery for further production) The prevalence of Brutalism in the public architecture of Delhi in the three decades following independence, should then, not come as a surprise. Delhi’s accidental Brutalism was a result of

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the scarcity of steel, the means of production being under the control of the Government of India, at industrial centres far from Delhi, and with few routes with which to enter the construction market. The enduring Imperialist impulse is expressed to us in the bulky, immutable forms that could not have afforded the grace of metal. A bias was created with existing pre-independence corporations located largely in the port towns of Bombay, Surat, Madras and Calcutta [Bombay Stock Exchange, Civil Hospital Ahmedabad, Industrial and Prudential Assurance Co. building in Bombay, Tata oil mills in Cochin] ; the patronage of Delhi’s architecture falling into the hands of the Government of India and its various agencies. The economic model in the 50s and 60s ignored the contribution of entrepreneurs towards generating growth, and the absence of private investment towards commercial architecture continued to be felt in Delhi till the late 80searly 90s.

PWD DIRECTIVES

“…, for all the potential for change inherent in the act of design, genuine innovation is rare. It is “standards”, rather than perennially inventive intentionality, on which reliably productive practices tend to be based.” Between its establishment in the middle of the 19th century and the close of the Victorian era, the Public Works Department of British India devised a corpus of explicitly defined design standards, norms and regulations which were employed as a form of cognitive technology enabling predictable and sustainable design production appropriate for the specific development intentions of that colonial administration.” For close to one and a half centuries, under the British and subsequently the central and local governments of post-colonial India, this powerful department of the Indian bureaucracy has continuously exercised its exclusive mandate to provide for the changing spatial requirements of the formal sector.

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After the revolts of 1857-58, and even before it, the British colonial government felt the need to reinforce their dominance. Through the consolidation and rationalization of acquired construction knowledge, the engineers employed by the British Indian Public Works Department created standard design solutions to proscribe all types of buildings undertaken by the department. Records of the day to day business in the Public Works Department indicate that the ostensive motive for the standardization of design and departmental procedure was the often explicitly stated concern of the PWD functionaries to plan with accuracy the projected costs of the department’s undertakings. To oblige conformity to familiar methods and known quantities, and above all to present information in prescribed formats amenable to efficient analysis and comparisons, were evidently perceived as obvious strategies for achieving economy in this regard. Some decades after the heyday of the British Indian PWD, by the end of the 19th century, the consolidated design knowledge of the British Indian engineers turned into an aid to the efficiently functioning bureaucracy. Where the stock plans/specification/standards were applied at two levels according to Scriver; “First there was the basic utility and costeffectiveness of the buildings themselves; second, the cognitive economy and heuristics enabled by the institutionalized practices and design procedures of the PWD.” The innovative intentionality of the PWD engineers, abundantly in evidence in the moment of aggressive design rationalization in the 1860’s, was effectively suppressed thereafter by the standards it established. By the end of the 19th century, the focus of building construction undertaken by the British Indian PWD shifted to reinforcing imperial dominance, the functional and climatic aspects of the previously prescribed design solutions became secondary to the visual effect of the buildings.

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Figure 6: Schema of the evolving intentionality in colonial building practices from the mid to the late 19th century (source: Peter Scriver)

At the turn of the 19th century, the British, under the presumed permanence of their Raj in India, intensified their operations further by doubling the employees in the Architectural Survey of India and the PWD. This also meant the hiring of Architects into the Department, which was otherwise being run by engineers and military personnel. These metropolitan professionals were given a mandate to build the urbane new public buildings that would accommodate the institutions of a modern state whilst representing the authority and confidence of a global empire that had come to regard its rule in India as a legitimate and permanent relationship of inequitable differences. The public buildings designed in the early 20th century, by Edwin Lutyens and Herbert Baker, among others, are amongst the ‘ most conspicuous’ indicators of the change in the political patterns and ethos of the British that had come about over the preceding half century; “In its very substance – its hard, permanent materials of ancient stone reinforced by the iron, concrete and steel of British industry – this architecture represented the ultimate ossification of the provisional “scaffolding” with which the colonial polity had been assembled.”

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The standards of the PWD formulated in mid-19th century held their weight through major changes in the intentions of the British colonial government at the beginning of the 20th century. Though the intentions and therefore the directives of the British PWD changed, the standard plans and materials still continued to proscribe building activity. The British Raj by that time was more concerned with reinforcing their dominance through the built environment under the pretext of their presumed permanence in India. How else could you explain the use of vernacular/ancient materials on concrete structures? It is this ossification of the bureaucratic structure of the PWD and their standards that continued to dictate building construction post-independence. The Indian Engineer/employee who never held a high position during the raj was still functioning in the same bureaucratic structure, now employing himself, the standards formulated by the British. “Beyond their mundane official functions the “departmental” designs of the PWD engineers provided physical and conceptual models that, one could argue, furnished the essential catalyst for the progressive re-patterning of the spatial norms and forms of whole sectors of modern Indian society. They were, in this sense, the first incursion of Modern Architecture and planning in India.”

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Figure 7: Schema of the evolving intentionality in colonial building practices from the mid to the late 19th century (source: Peter Scriver)

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Nehru’s need to create a new national identity through progress in technology received far greater attention than Gandhi’s “Make in India”. With the Introduction of Corbusier, the second wave of Modernism hit the country and it was up to the first generation of Indian architects to re-rationalize Modernism to suit Indian conditions and existing technology. It has been argued that India received and reinterpreted modernism to a more regionally

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appropriate form. If we consider this rationalisation as the first Directive (1D) in Scrivers Schema, then the ‘Need for an Identity’ becomes the first Norm (1N). The subsequent developments in this schema are not as intentional as the first. The PWD’s need to have ‘consistency in design practices’ (2N) then is the logical next step in Scrivers Schema. The process of standardisation of this ‘new’ way of building was smoothly done by the PWD, which was already using these techniques and materials under the stone facades of the late colonial buildings. It is also the merit of the modern way of building that allows for quick and accurate construction, which attracted the PWD bureaucracy to adopt it as the standard. The ‘need to standardise’ then becomes the second directive (2D) As was the case with the British Indian PWD, the post-colonial PWD too, for the smooth functioning of its bureaucracy, sought to control building activity through ‘standardisation’ of materials. This becomes the third Norm (3N). The directive then becomes ‘control standards’ (3D). This process of control has directly resulted in the wide expanses of whitewashed public architecture, built by the PWD and DDA that we see even today. The third Directive then translates itself into the fourth Norm (4N) which is to ‘Seek conformity to standards’. This top down approach results in consistent design solutions by dampening the innovative intentionality of the designer. However, it may cause a break away from the standard mode of practice. For the sake of this analysis, the fourth Directive (4D) becomes “Re-Rationalisation”. Which is essentially a breakaway from prevalent practices.

UTILITARIAN MODERNISM In the capital and also in the nation, largely building activity was taken up by the government bodies like the PWD and the CPWD within the building codes and regulations taken from the British practice (Long A, 1997). But soon enough the architects realized the limitations that modernist practice included. These buildings hence transformed by adapting to the Indian context and taking the shape of the local factors.

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The landscape of Delhi started to be filled with important institutions and buildings. In this era with a wide spectrum of buildings to look at the aspect of a complete building changed for the viewer. These ideas got transferred through the masters to the new generation of architects for whom the range of building project had also changed. The first five year plan came up with new typologies of buildings like institutions, industrial townships, housing etc. and for the architects of that age this was the opportunity to use their creative freedom. Although many new local industries started manufacturing building materials there was still a shortage to the demand of the building materials required. Within the constraint of material the style of modernism developed was called as “Utilitarian Modernism” (Bhatt and Scriver, 1990). A concept very indigenous to India, this was deep rooted in the seeing the built form as a product of its function but instead used the repertoire of available material and technology in India. There was wide concern for climatic responsiveness in architecture and the buildings were made to be functional yet economical. This can be seen in the vocabulary of the expression of structural grids and play of volumes in the buildings and distribution of elements in the landscape. The distinct language of these buildings include the structure of reinforced concrete slabs, the usage of concrete sun breakers as sunshading devices, sometimes in the form of traditional chajjas (Lang, 2002). The linear arrangement of continuous punctured fenestrations on the external facade with the freedom of adding elements externally for the external treatment of the building. They typically had low ceilings and the main reinterpretation of European Modernism and The International Style- the open plan. Which within the seemingly similar Utilitarian Modernist buildings was divided and interpreted in many different ways. Vikram Bhatt and Peter Scriver give a strong verbal image of the architecture as, “Consisting of “reinforced concrete frame, masonry in-fill and floor slab roof; strip or screen on concrete sun breakers over continuous fenestrations; a linear outward looking order in planning with a spacious grid-determined distribution of elements in the landscape” (Bhatt and Scriver, 1990).

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Such buildings were extensively produced by the DDA and CPWD. Although these works are scorned by critics, they are what can be called as the “Indian Modern Architecture�. But it is not agreed as or accepted as it is neither aesthetic nor something unique to India (Long A, 1997). Most of the buildings have had a large impact on the experience of architecture in Delhi.. Architect N K Kothari had a great significance to New Delhi. St. Columbus School and the Odeon Cinema Hall, BL Kapur Medical Hospital and over ten embassies where all designed by him. The greatly popular Director of the School of Planning and Architecture, Prof, Cyrus Jhabvala had his own vast contribution to the architectural language of the city with buildings like Max Mueller Bhawan Library Building, Ajoy Bhawan, Kirorimal College, Yashwant Place and many more.

Utilitarian Modernism was the most prevalent architectural style against the others of pure rationalists, empiricist and the regional vernacular in India. The main reason for the choice was that the buildings built in this manner were economical and affordable by the government (Lang, 2002). The effortless formulae of column and beam construction with the in-fill walls and concrete slabs was a very productive and rapid method of construction. The years of rationalization of the building systems of the PWD made the system to be highly functional in terms of execution.

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EDUCATION CIRCUMSCRIBED BY MODERNIST PRESCRIPTIONS

INTRODUCTION The education system stood still waiting for an ignition. It aimed to reflect the independent days and the future development and progress of the nation but still stood on principles that showed promising rudiments but the details of which were either outdated to match a free progressing third world agenda or were simply incomplete or inexistent especially in the field of higher education and even certain areas of secondary education. The state of design and art education was sour and exceptionally weak and the entire nation’s source of educated designers and architects rested on the shoulders of Tagore’s Shantiniketan and its affiliates and the Sir J. J. School of Art where both either taught art or craft that was harnessed in local handicraft and small scale industries. There was a chronic need for the establishment and development of design and architectural education through a system of institutions of optimum quality. This dire need to establish a centralised education system for design and architecture led to the invitation extended by Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru to Charles and Ray Eames who went on to establish Indian migrant but regionalist modern design education system that no only established its dominance throughout the design institutions through the years of modern developments, i.e. between 1958 (the finishing of the Eames Report) and 1991 (New Economic Policy of India), but went onto persist its imperial effect on the education system till the present day. This was born out of an err, where the desire of India’s education to achieve modernity misinterpreted that very modernity as modernism and started the progression of an imperial takeover of modernism over Indian architectural education.

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Figure 8: The timeline of design education in India (1840-1991) (source: author)

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THE INVITATION TO THE EAMESES Charles and Ray Eames’ involvement with India began with their work on the film, Textiles and Ornamental Arts of India, a cinematic record of the 1955 exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art. While making the film, they became friends with Mrs. Pupul Jayakar, India’s representative at the exhibition. In 1957, the government of India and its leader, Jawaharlal Nehru, expressed concern about the impact of Western design and technology on their country’s culture and the need to establish an intense design education framework in the nation. Subsequently at Mrs. Jayakar’s recommendation, they invited the Eameses to visit the country, evaluate the problem, and recommend a course of action. Charles and Ray Eames accepted the assignment and journeyed throughout India, taking hundreds of photographs, and meeting individuals from all disciplines. (Eames Office, n.d.). This then led to the creation of what was known as the Eames Report of 1958 or The India Report. The report was a recommended structure and characterization of the Indian institute for design and this went onto forming the country’s first design institution – National School of Design, founded by Charles Eames. The report became the holy scripture of design and architectural education and the “go-to” document for the curriculum, management and student eligibility structuring.

OBJECTIVE “The Government of India asked for recommendations on a programme of training in design that would serve as an aid to the small industries; and that would resist the present rapid deterioration in design and quality of consumer goods. Charles Eames, American industrial designer and his wife and colleague Ray Eames, visited India for three months at the invitation of the Government, with the sponsorship of the Ford Foundation, to explore the problems of design and to make recommendations for a training programme (Eames, 1958). India was vulnerable. It knew of the existence of technology, it had tasted the introduction of technology, architecture and design through its colonized phase but India did not know how to tap creativity, design acumen and its potential human resource in a

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structured way to make it bigger and better. The massive deterioration of goods and services right after colonization rendered industry, architecture and goods in a mess and there was a dire need for recovery and this was taken as the primitive objective of the Eames Report and eventually of the varied design, engineering and architectural institutions that were crafted in the country. The Eameses toured throughout India, making a careful study of the many centres of design, handicrafts and general manufacture. They talked with many persons, official and non-official, in the field of small and large industry, in design and architecture, and in education. As a result of their study and discussions, the following report emerged.” (Eames, 1958)

REPORT RECOMMENDATIONS The Report recommended that, as an arm of the government, India create a design institute dedicated to an awareness of the qualities and problems inherent in everyday life. The Eameses believed this could assist in dealing with the changes occurring in India, which were caused primarily by advances in communication in the modern world. They explained that new designs for modern India should provide the same “tremendous service, dignity and love” as the lota. “We recommend an institute of design, research and service which would also be an advanced training medium. It would be connected with the Ministry of Commerce and Industry but it should retain enough autonomy to protect its prime objective from bureaucratic disintegration.” (Eames, 1958) The Report also recommended that a board of governors for the institute be drawn from representatives of many disciplines—sociology, engineering, philosophy, architecture, economics, communications, physics, history, and others. (Eames Office, n.d.) Later sections of the Report detailed the subject matter, proceedings of the curriculum, the eligibility criteria for students and faculty, and the underlines of the physical plant or the design center itself.

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THE REGIONALIST MODERNISM: REINVENTING THE LOTA The need for such institutions was brought forward by a very basic modernist approach of design processes at looking at the logical and aesthetic nuances of a product or an output. This very process became the very curriculum outline of design and architecture colleges of looking at the premise, the details, the materiality, the functionality, the geometry, the aesthetic, the mass production, and the logic and logistics the multi-disciplinary approach of institutions. The overseas originated modernism did not establish itself in India as a perfect reflection of it western application. It went onto going through a regionalist makeover before it started to conquer the realm of architectural design, education and policy making. Here, the Eames Report of 1958 drew inspiration from the lota in order to establish the various nuances of the education policy they will be looking into and detailing out in order to derive a very wholesome system that Charles and Ray Eames felt reflected in the perfection and beauty of the lota

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Figure 9: The derivation from the lota by Charles and Ray Eames (source: author

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S.P.A. DELHI, BORN FROM MODERNIST PRESCRIPTION The landscape of design and architectural education in the city of Delhi is fronted by the School of Planning and Architecture. The institution was incepted in 1941 as the Department of Architecture of the Delhi Polytechnic. It progressed forward by being affiliated to the University of Delhi and went onto being integrated with School of Town and Country Planning in 1955 and renamed as the School of Planning and Architecture in 1959. The year of 1958, as established, changed the country’s outlook to design education after the release of the Eames Report and post this was the formation of the standardisation of modernist design and architectural education and institution in the city of Delhi.

FIRST PRESCRIPTION: THE BAUHAUS PEDAGOGY The very preliminary prescription for the new design education system came from the most diverse and profound Bauhaus system of education that originated in Europe and started strong shift from classical art and design education. This education system went onto propagate itself in the United States and other parts of Europe which later became the key inspirations and prescriptions for curriculum design along with Bauhaus itself.

MULTI-DISCIPLINARY STRUCTURING The most profound derivative of the Bauhaus ideology was the multi-disciplinary approach introduced by Walter Gropius. Instead of academic theory, the Bauhaus relied on a pluralistic educational concept, on creative methods and the individual development of the students’ artistic talents. To begin with, almost all of the workshops, like the preliminary course, were formatively influenced by Johannes Itten. Instead of getting the students to copy from models, as was still done in the traditional academies of art, he encouraged them to produce their own creative designs based on their own subjective perceptions. In the preliminary course, he taught the foundations of materials properties, composition, and colour theory. After Itten’s departure, the preliminary course was divided between László Moholy-Nagy and Josef Albers. Moholy-Nagy shifted the emphasis


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from artistic issues to technical ones and developed exercises on construction, balance and materials. Albers was responsible for familiarizing the students with craft techniques and appropriate use of the most important materials. Beyond the preliminary course, Paul Klee and Wassily Kandinsky, among others, supervised and supplemented the teaching work on form and colour theory, and Oskar Schlemmer taught the analysis and depiction of the human body. In addition, classes were taught in non-artistic disciplines such as mathematics and building materials. (Vossen, n.d.) “The Bauhaus was an interdisciplinary, international workshop for ideas, in which diverse opinions, theories and styles coalesced in the search for the New Man, New Architecture and New Living; in which the primary focus was on an open-minded approach to methods and ideas: namely, on reinventing the world.” (Bauhaus, n.d.)

Modern day School of Planning and Architecture at Delhi maintains the multi-disciplinary approach as per the Council of Architecture that was inspired by Bauhaus trends. There may not be stress laid on production as compared to Gropius’ Bauhaus but the institution maintains a balance between design, craft, graphics and then humanities, materiality, structures and other non-artistic disciplines along with an amalgamated stress on theory, practice and technology.

CURRICULUM OF SCALE Gropius’ famous curriculum diagram formed the very progression of the academic session from start to end and outlined the pedagogy that Bauhaus initiated and then propagated the world over. It followed a scaled progression of curriculum where the scale and level intensity rose from a preliminary course of theory to the final building. The pedagogical diagram lays out the curriculum in concentric rings: on the outside, a foundation year, and, at the core, mastery; these are linked through intermediate bands of theoretical and material studies (wood, metal, weaving, color, etc.). (Tallman, 2009) School of Planning and Architecture follows a very similar pedagogy of a curriculum of scale where the primary years cater to theoretic knowledge, skill building and setting a foundation with a smaller scaled design exercise in the first year like a pavilion. It builds scale by moving onto a residence, then a community centre to an institution to an office

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to a stadium or hotel or housing complex and finally to an urban design scale through second, third, fourth and fifth years respectively. The scale of a literature document moves from rudimentary research to a dissertation to a seminar.

Figure 10: Bauhaus pedagogy diagram by Walter Gropius and its translation (source: www.100bauhaus.de)

SECOND PRESCRIPTION (1946-1972): WESTERN INSTITUTIONS The education system of the School of Planning and Architecture dates initiates in 1946 when Sir Jogendra Singh of the Viceroy’s Executive Council constructed a twenty two member committee headed by Nalini Ranjan Sarkar, recommended the establishment of these institutions in various parts of India, along the lines of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and consulting from the Illinois Institute of Technology at Urbana–Champaign with affiliated secondary institutions. This is where the models of American universities became a prescriptive guideline in setting up the education system until the formation of the Architects’ Act of 1972.

THIRD PRESCRIPTION (1972-PRESENT): EAMES REPORT The Eames Report of 1958, began its application by the setting up the first design school of India in Ahmedabad. This started a spiralling effect and led to the sprouting of multiple design, industrial design, art and architectural schools and institutions. This progression 41

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became an important inspiration during the formation of the Architects’ Act of 1972 and subsequently the formation of the Council of Architecture that when onto defining the Architectural system of education laying guidelines for pedagogy, student and faculty eligibility, curriculum, subject matter and the progression of the curriculum from start to end of the stipulated years.

THE ROSTER OF DISCIPLINES

“…all the disciplines that have developed in our time – sociology, engineering, philosophy, architecture, economics, communications, physics, psychology, history, painting, anthropology...” (Eames, 1958) “All the disciplines that have developed in our time” became the curriculum of modernist education and led to the multi-disciplinary approach of education. The entire series of disciplines that the School of Planning and Architecture reoriented itself to after the guidelines of the Council of Architecture displayed a very subliminal comparison with those delineated in the Eames Report’s roster of disciplines. This concluded how the report guided the guidelines of the Architects’ Act of 1972 and the subsequent guidelines of the COA that went onto prescribing Delhi’s architectural education, a set of guides that persist even in the current times and are progressing beyond. The emergence of the contribution of environmental education and behavioural studies to architectural education did not happen until the late 1960s (Rapoport, 1977) and this like many others are examples of how the citation of certain disciplines in the Eames Report spiralled forward and carved a permanent place in the roster of disciplines of modern design and architectural education.

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DELINEATED SUBJECTS IN THE INDIA

SCHOOL OF PLANNING &

DESIGN REPORT (EAMES REPORT), 1958

ARCHITECTURE, DELHI, 2016

Engineering Building Engineering & Management Economics Structural Structures Art History Art Appreciation Mechanical Surveying & Levelling Political History History of Architecture Production Workshop + Art & Graphics + Design Agriculture Physics Structures Dance & Drama Co-curricular (unrecognized) Philosophy Logistics Building Management Mathematics Mathematics Painting Arts & Graphics Physiology Anthropometrics Communications Arts & Graphics + Co-curricular Anthropology Theory of Settlements Theory & Techniques Theory of Design Psychology Statistics Mathematics + Building Management Architecture Architecture Design Graphics Art & Graphics Music Art & Graphics Literature Sculpture Art & Graphics Demography Theory of Settlements Table 2Drawing parallels between the Eames Report, 1958 and the School of Planning and Architecture, Delhi based on the roster of disciplines (source: author)

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Figure 11: Citing the translation of subjects in the Eames Report to formulate the roster of disciplines under the Council of Architecture (source: author)

STUDENT ELIGIBILITY

CRITERIA

STUDENT ELIGIBILITY AS PER

SCHOOL OF PLANNING &

THE EAMES REPORT, 1958

ARCHITECTURE, DELHI, 2016

Educational

Graduate architects are

Undergraduate Programme

Qualification

recommended not because of

Candidates shall be eligible for

their design training but in spite of

admission to the First Year of the

it. (Eames, 1958)

Bachelors’ Degree programme in

Hence, this defined the student

Architecture or Planning if they have

of the institution to be up to

obtained at least 50 percent marks in

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date with the present state of

aggregate with Mathematics as a

educational qualification that

subject in the Class 12th or qualifying

was suitable for that level of

examination.

architectural education (under

Admission to the Bachelors’ Degree

graduate or post graduate). For

programme in Architecture and

the under graduate course, the

Planning for the session 2016-17 will

senior secondary level of

be made through Joint Entrance

education became the

Examination (JEE- 2016) conducted

benchmark and for the post

by the Central Board of Secondary

graduate level the graduate

Education (CBSE) strictly on merit

level of architectural education

subject to fulfilment of the eligibility

became the benchmark.

criteria and reservation of seats as per the approved norms of the School. Post-graduate Programme Candidates shall be eligible for admission to the First Year of the various Masters’ Degree programmes if they have obtained at least 55 percent marks in aggregate (50 percent for SC/ ST/ OBC candidates), in the qualifying examination.

Scientific

The students themselves seem

Qualification in science for

Proficiency

much brighter than their designs – completing class 12 and eligibility to the disciplines of Physics and

sit for JEE examination (being

Chemistry are not unknown to

introduced in 2017)

them. Social

They have in their training applied

Qualification in social science for

Sciences

these disciplines to some

completing class 12

sociological and human scale problems.

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General

They are aware of the use of

Qualification in social sciences to

Knowledge

materials and some of the

complete class 12 and qualification

and

functions of economics and they

in general knowledge questions

Economics

are apt to suspect that these have

cited under the AIEEE/JEE Main

something to do with the history

examination and recommended

and development of a culture.

otherwise

Additional

As a group, young architects are

Proficiency in drawing/sketching

Talents

apt to be involved in general

judged in the JEE Main examination.

social problems and in theatre,

Any additional talents to support in

dance, music and other aspects of

elective and co-curricular subjects.

communications. Enthusiasm

They tend to have a higher than

Recommended, not a criterion.

average potential for enthusiasm. Other

Naturally they need not all be

knowledge

architects – an equally responsible

and

young engineer, economist,

proficiency

doctor, mathematician,

Recommended, not a criterion

philosopher or housewife might also be a candidate Table 3: Drawing parallels between the Eames Report, 1958 and the School of Planning and Architecture, Delhi based on student eligibility (source: author)

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FACULTY ELIGIBILITY

CRITERIA

FACULTY ELIGIBILITY AS PER

SCHOOL OF PLANNING &

THE EAMES REPORT, 1958

ARCHITECTURE, DELHI, 2016

Student –

The quantity of permanent

Studio Classes – 1:8 to 1:10 with

Faculty

faculty set under the Eames

room for one on one training.

Proportioning Report with respect to the admitted students was 1:1. This ratio over a period of time with a larger influx of students has altered to 1:6 to 1:8 but primarily follows the very same faculty to student ratio. Forms of

o Permanent

o Permanent Faculty

Faculty

o Visiting

o Professor

o Government bodies

o Associate Professor

o Private practices

o Assistant Professor

o Industry sources

o Visiting Faculty

o Institutions

o Private Practices

o Foreign visiting critics and

o Industry Sources

consultants

o Institutions o Guest Lecturers

Additional

Some staff members must be

Faculty for electives from various

Faculty

prepared to work and train in

realms and fields are hired to

communication techniques –

introduce greater disciplines like

exhibitions, graphics, printing,

photography, industrial design,

photography, film,

literature, installation design,

demonstration, writing, drama.

landscaping, interior design, etc.

(Eames, 1958)

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The Director

The Director of the Institute

The director is qualified in the field of

should perhaps not be a

architecture or other relative fields.

professional designer. He should be a mature man capable of approaching administration as a non-specialist – a man who by nature could become part of the Board of Governors and a part of the Institute. Table 4: Drawing parallels between the Eames Report, 1958 and the School of Planning and Architecture, Delhi based on faculty eligibility (source: author)

FUNCTIONS

“The Government of India asked for recommendations on a programme of training in design that would serve as an aid to the small industries; and that would resist the present rapid deterioration in design and quality of consumer goods” (Eames, 1958)

Table 5: The cyclic functions (source: author)

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The aim of the education industry followed what the Eameses prescribed as the dire need of the country – to support the Indian industries and production of quality goods, services and spaces through quality and wholesome education. This led to a unified and sole objective that drove university and institutional functions – to start with research (theoretic and applied) and initiate a rigorous training process that enables the output qualified personnel to provide to industries and society at large. The process of service ignited the possibility to look for loopholes and shortcomings and restart a research that involved a larger pool of informed solutions and theories and continue the cycle indefinitely. This cycle established foundational functions of the institutions where each student travelled through the series of research, training and went onto become an output for service.

CURRICULUM PROCEEDINGS

PROJECT

Project A

STEPS OF THE CURICULUM AS

SCHOOL OF PLANNING &

PER THE EAMES REPORT, 1958

ARCHITECTURE, DELHI, 2016

Introducing values of design,

Building a theoretic foundation,

function, logic, material,

introducing terminologies and

structure and all other

building a specific lexicon of the

disciplinary constituents.

field. Introducing values and an understanding of the subject.

Project B

The application of the values

Case studies, and prototype design

through the generation of

at a smaller scale. Also includes

prototypes to understand the

research and citation of alternatives.

training to service transition.

Basically, a translation of values to understand and develop examples.

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Project C

Project D

The process of analysis in order

Site analysis, project analysis and

to understand users, functional

learnings from prototypes to create

requirements, extraneous

an experiential understanding in

requirements and aspirations of

addition to the theoretic

a project or product.

understanding.

The application of real project

Final project in the form of a

analysis, learnt values and

complex design exercise or literature

theoretic information and

paper or presentation on a topic or

learnings from prototypes into

artwork, etc. Here the theoretic and

the synthesis and development

experimental learnings come

of an informed project.

together to allow the training to make sound design decisions.

Table 6: Drawing parallels between the Eames Report, 1958 and the School of Planning and Architecture, Delhi based on the curriculum proceedings (source: author)

FOURTH PRESCRIPTION: RIBA The standardization of architectural education and practice in India goes back to the 19th century establishments. In the 1850s colonial India, the British established Technical Schools. They were able to supplant the traditional method of passing of knowledge from the master craftsmen to the pupil. This was different from Europe where the traditional skills and knowledge systems were transformed by the advent of industrialization. Art schools trained draftsmen to assist British engineers who were employed to construct buildings for the civil and military administration. The technical Schools only provided rudimentary knowledge to produce functionally competent surveyors, store keepers and junior engineers. Even this minimal education was coveted because it offered the prospect of a whitecollar job in government service and slowly the correlation between education and a secure government job got ingrained in public consciousness. There were no attempts at replicating the kind of architectural education that existed in England, atleast not in the beginning. Later, in the early part of this century when architectural schools were established, the objectives

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remained vocational in nature and the pedagogy examination oriented. The curriculum attempted to mimic courses conducted in England without transmitting the spirit or milieu which existed in their class rooms. The approach was formulaic in nature and later, when more schools were established, they followed the same formula. However, this education did enable Indian graduates to register with the RIBA so it must have ensured a certain degree of competence and conformity with standards in England. But the educational objectives have not evolved since then and this stagnation is the source of complaint. (Menon, 1998) Architecture as a profession was considered to fall in the discipline of engineering. The use of steel and concrete towards the end of the nineteenth century confirmed this perception and still happens to prevails in architectural thinking. Even in today’s time students from science background are considered eligible for architectural education but not students from humanities. The British were able to create a new class of elites for whom westernization was synonymous to modernization which reflected in the educational ideology. This was repressed by the reformists who didn’t believe in the westernization completely and talked of a different, more ‘Indian’ modernisation. A G Krishna Menon concludes in his article. The Contemporary Architecture of Delhi: a Critical History: “The significant issues in architectural education relate to and derive from the profession's antecedents in the colonial past. A profession rooted in the European cultural mainstream was transplanted by the colonial government to replace an existing tradition. This jump-start succeeded in spreading western ideology but has not eradicated the old order which continued its own evolutionary path between the interstices of modern development. Therefore, today, one is confronted with two diametrically opposed options of architectural representation, each compelling in their ability to provide viable architecture”

MODERNISM PRESCRIBED DESIGN EDUCATION, CONCLUSION Design education lay unattended and undefined in the post political independent landscape of Delhi. The leaders of the independent nation turned to look for inspirations to accelerate the propelling of the inception of design and architectural education and

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looked to the west for ideas, ideals, case studies and plausible examples. But what occurred in the need for acceleration was the misinterpretation where modernism was misread as modernity and in this thirst for a modern and developing nation, modernism became a solution instead of being the inspiration. It ended up being a prescriptive source that defined disciplines, eligibility criteria, progression of the curriculum and what have you. From being an inspiration for setting up an educational structure modernism was simply inserted into the norms and regulations of design and architectural education filled the very skeleton of the design institutions of Delhi. What err was made in the 20th century; where inspiration turned prescription, turned proscription, is unfortunately persisting in the post-modern era. Those very shackles of modern education and nomenclatures of architectural curriculum stand today in present day education and there doesn’t seem to be any plausible upgradations, changes, tweaks or transformations that make the system of education away from the modernist established norms and systems. RIBA, Bauhaus, Eames Report, American architectural institutions, the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris, and all the modernist teachers and mentors became the prescription and eventually the proscription of the realm of architectural and design education in Delhi.

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Figure 12: Analysis of building elements: sunshades and landscape (source: author)

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Figure 13: Analysis of building elements: louves and courtyard (source: author)

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Figure 14: Analysis of building elements: jaalis and recessed windows (source: author)

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Figure 15: Analysis of building elements: flat roofs (source: author)

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BUILDING THE HYPOTHESIS Delhi stood perplexed at the stroke of midnight. This might sound very dramatic but right after independence the city was left in a field of opportunity. It could either accept historicism and run back to the times it once flourished before colonial influx or choose to cast a new dawn for the rest of its progression. The city was vulnerable because of a lack of identity and having cited as the new capital of the independent nation had a huge task at hand to develop a role model of progression and development. Industrialization in the west took the world by storm and at the brink of dawn Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru envisioned India to reach at par with the western hemisphere and see the country grow stronger, self-reliant and flourishing with ideas, economic output and a healthy population. Modernism and its preachers inspired Nehru to form his vision of an independent India and that went onto bringing the forms of modernism that took over the country and the city of Delhi. This went onto directing the built-scape of the country, set up the design engineering institutional ambience, sought to harness the materials of the new age—steel, glass, concrete, plastic, plywood—to make buildings, furniture and everyday objects that met real needs (Khilnani, 2012), introduce mass production of a human scale and dimension and eventually change the lifestyle, design style and educational pedagogy of India. Modernism arrived in India when the country was newly born, vulnerable and somewhat, gullible. This vulnerability surrendered to the ideologies, expressions and structure of modernism and the country began to wear modernism and all its glory. The following fields were struck by modernism: •

Architectural design o Spatial planning o Introduction of function like group housing, high rise, commercial centers, museums, transit hubs, educational institutions, political centers, embassies, etc. o Physical expression and iconography

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City and urban planning

Materiality - steel, glass, concrete, plastic, plywood, etc.

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Education o The pedagogy o The institutional structuring o The hierarchy and qualification of students and faculty o The degree of national importance and governmental affiliation o The variety of fields and subject matter

Building stipulations o Building codes o Specifications o Sanctioning of projects o Bye-laws

Lifestyle

Art, media and print

Production of goods and services and economies of scale

The rendition of an urban sphere and city dwelling

What was unique and energising about this modernist takeover that introduce some relief in the city’s list of absolution for lack of identity was that modernism changed flavours when it rose in the city. There was spice, and localisation in the spirit of architecture design, education and policy making, something Kenneth Frampton also mentioned in his paper on Critical Regionalism. Modernism was born out of the second wave (Alvin Toffler) of industrialisation and a focussed on a very pragmatic form, utility and aesthetic of architecture. What the designers and planners did was perfect modernism by the introduction of the regionalist flavour through climatic corrections, local materiality, contextual considerations, etc. This investigation looks at the years of this regionalist modernism in the independent capital city of Delhi from the mid 1920s to the brink of liberalization and all its glory, its ambiguity, its impact on the various realms of the city and its fade out.

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Modernism was not just an architectural movement that immigrated to India. It was a thought, of execution and a form of expression. The movement engulfed many realms like those mentioned above and this research looks at what impacted the architecture fraternity. This fraternity includes the built solutions, the educational system and curriculum, the building regulations and codes and the lifestyle changes that occurred within the realm of architecture. The modernism of Delhi is defined as much by its vast stock of (primarily) institutional buildings, as it is by the curious absence of corporate modernism. In their vocabulary, material and method, the modernism embodied by Delhi is derived from a state-controlled industry of construction/architecture, which stands in contrast to the futurism, and post-war decadence.

The impact starts with the formation of the Public Works Department’s specification and building regulations promoted a certain stylistic and spatial vocabulary of design and those persist even today and guide the design of contemporary buildings under the modernist framework. The materials in the PWD specifications today are limited to modernist materials and those like bamboo and mud blocks do not lie under regular specifications and lie under a non-scheduled section of the specifications with limited guides and information which leads to the argument that why even today there is a lack of provision for anything (detail, material or structural solution) outside the modernist realm? Why is modernism is still persisting in the building codes and regulations? Even in the sphere of education the curriculum and the regulations that we are taught in are all modernist and persist till the current day! This study looks at the incoming and the persistence of modernism in the field of architecture and architectural policy making and education and understands how those norms imbibed by the system of Delhi became so massive that they last even after the mega events like liberalization, privatization, globalization and the digital age and also understands how the city was and is still living in a confusion of deriving is own unique stylistic expression and architectural language and system.

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CONCLUSION The modernism of Delhi is defined as much by its vast stock of primarily institutional buildings, as it is by the curious absence of corporate modernism. In their vocabulary, material and method, the modernism embodied by Delhi’s repertory is derived from a state-controlled industry of construction/architecture, which stands in contrast to the futurism, and post-war decadence of modernists elsewhere. “The assumption of such a dictatorial planning is perfectly reasonable in such economies where there is a central or command planning with total coverage of all sectors. It is most inappropriate for an economy like India where govt can enforce decisions by command in only a small part of the economy.” (Karmakar, 2012) Utilitarian Modernism had its own set of limitations. Repetition of the building style by the government sector and the emphasis on completion on the building rather than in its functionality or usability in terms of the types of spaces produced led to the change in outlook of these buildings. Modernism started to be seen as a building type in degeneration rather than an architectural style (Lang, 2002). The boring forms that repeated in all typologies of buildings educational, institutional, commercial, residential – apartments and housing. Also the structural system failed quite often in the construction. Steel reinforcement corroded due to the lack of cover in the beams which led to the columns being crumbled. There was often efflorescence on the brickwork. Stucco started to be used as a smooth finish to cover up the bad workmanship on the buildings(Lang, 2002). These led the architects to look for different ways of construction. What emerged as a reaction from the limitations of directive led Utilitarian Modernism was a new style of architecture. The idea of architecture remains to be Modernistic in tradition. A building that stand out in the context and is visually strong. With the structure being expressed and creating a framework which can be modified as per the climatic factors. Simplicity of forms, the interpenetration of spaces, the precision of detailing and the high level of craftsmanship (Lang, 2002).

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Today, in 2016, Architecture and other services lie beyond the range of the command of the govt authority. A single decision-maker cannot command all the decisions in this vast, overwhelming private sector economy. The successive policies of liberalization of the economy have allowed diversification of individuals invested in urban development and hence, diversity in architectural practice. Concentration on the build-up of heavy industries base by the Mahalanobis strategy caused relative retardation in investment in building technologies over the period. As a consequence, the country became dependent on the import of architectural products, and eventually ideas, (Post-91) The stock of built form added in the last (two) decade(s) that has been achieved through private investment, In large part, bears little resemblance to the modernism that preceded it, not in small part due to the vastly different masters it serves. Education defines practice and the kind of practitioner you will be. It sets the very foundation upon which ones individuality experiments to achieve a versatile career life. It ought to be a democratic foundation made from the very people who will experience it, experiment on it and go onto defining the industries of design, architecture, art and construction. The very misinterpretation of modernism as modernity replaced the democratic quality of education to that of an prescriptive takeover. This is how architectural education fell into the hands of a modernist imperialism along with building standards and went onto defining the architects who graduated and the buildings they introduced to the landscape of Delhi. The city of Delhi stood politically independent after the exeunt of the British Raj but what the city did not realise was the persistence of a being under an imperialist state. This imperialist was modernism and its regional flavour seeping in to the nooks and crannies of architectural design, education, policy making and building regulations. This is an investigation to show how even after a political independence, the city of Delhi continued to breathe under a form of architectural imperialism, under a regionalist modernism that continues to show its persistence even today. A false equivalence was developed between modernism and modernity where the former went onto prescribing and proscribing the architectural functioning of the city of Delhi

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LIST OF FIGURES Figure 1: Amul advertisement, Times of India 1968

Figure 2: Linoleum

advertisement, 1979

15

Figure 3: A 1950s showroom in Bombay

16

Figure 4: A 1950s showroom in Bombay

17

Figure 5: A busy crossing in Bombay 1950

17

Figure 6: Schema of the evolving intentionality in colonial building practices from the mid to the late 19th century (source: Peter Scriver)

26

Figure 7: Schema of the evolving intentionality in colonial building practices from the mid to the late 19th century (source: Peter Scriver)

28

Figure 8: The timeline of design education in India (1840-1991) (source: author)

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Figure 9: The derivation from the lota by Charles and Ray Eames (source: author)

38

Figure 10: Bauhaus pedagogy diagram by Walter Gropius and its translation (source: www.100bauhaus.de)

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Figure 11: Citing the translation of subjects in the Eames Report to formulate the roster of disciplines under the Council of Architecture (source: author)

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Figure 12: Analysis of building elements: sunshades and landscape (source: author)

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Figure 13: Analysis of building elements: louves and courtyard (source: author)

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Figure 14: Analysis of building elements: jaalis and recessed windows (source: author) 55 Figure 15: Analysis of building elements: flat roofs (source: author)

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LIST OF TABLES Table 1: Allocation of public investment in the second five year plan

10

Table 2Drawing parallels between the Eames Report, 1958 and the School of Planning and Architecture, Delhi based on the roster of disciplines (source: author)

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Table 3: Drawing parallels between the Eames Report, 1958 and the School of Planning and Architecture, Delhi based on student eligibility (source: author)

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Table 4: Drawing parallels between the Eames Report, 1958 and the School of Planning and Architecture, Delhi based on faculty eligibility (source: author) Table 5: The cyclic functions (source: author)

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Table 6: Drawing parallels between the Eames Report, 1958 and the School of Planning and Architecture, Delhi based on the curriculum proceedings (source: author)

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BIBLIOGRAPHY

Khilnani, S., 2012. The Design Manifesto - HT Mint. [Online] Available at: http://www.livemint.com/Opinion/J5PcsLOaQk6M9XNHypt75H/The-designmanifesto.html [Accessed 08 September 2016]. Eames Office, n.d. Eames Office. [Online] Available at: http://www.eamesoffice.com/the-work/the-lota-the-india-report/ [Accessed 08 September 2016]. Eames, C. a. R., 1958. The India Report, Ahmedabad: National Institute of Design. Vossen, C., n.d. Teaching at the Bauhaus. [Online] Available at: http://www.bauhaus.de/en/das_bauhaus/45_unterricht/ [Accessed 12 October 2016]. Bauhaus, 1. Y. o., n.d. 100bauhaus.de. [Online] Available at: https://www.bauhaus100.de/en/past/overview/ [Accessed 12 October 2016]. Tallman, S., 2009. Bauhaus Curriculum. Art In America, 1 December, Issue 2010. Rapoport, A., 1977. Human Aspects of Urban Design. New York: Pergamon. Menon, A. G. K., 1998. Architexturez.net. [Online]. Menon, AG Krishna. The Contemporary Architecture of Delhi: a Critical History. New Delhi, India: TVB School of Habitat Studies, 2003. Seminar on Architecture, Edited by Achyut P. Kanvinde. New Delhi: Lalit Kala Akademi, 1959.

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Bhatt, V. and Scriver, P. (1990) After the masters: Contemporary Indian architecture. United States: Mapin Publishing Pvt. Ltd ,India. Scriver, Peter. Rationalization, Standardization, and Control in Design, a Cognitive Historical Study of Architecture. Theses. Delft, the Netherlands, 1994. Balakrishnan, Pulapre (Nov., 2007) Visible Hand: Public Policy and Economic Growth in the Nehru era. Centre for Development Studies, Trivandrum. Working Paper 391 (This reference carries the following citations: Chibber, V. (2003) Locked in Place: State-building and late industrialization in India. Princeton University Press.) Katano, Hikoji (1965). Some Characteristics of Professor Mahalanobis’ Growth Model. The Developing Economies. Vol. 3, No.1 pp 34-47. Karmakar, Dr Asim K. (2012). Development Planning & Policies under Mahalanobis Strategy: A Tale of India’s Dilemma. International Journal of Business and Social Research (IJBSR). Vol. 2, No.2 pp 121-132 Kolawole, Bashir Olayinka (Apr., 2013). Economic Development Planning Models: A Theoretical and Analytical Exposition. European Scientific Journal. Vol. 9, No.10 pp. 176-180. (This reference carries the following citations: Ghatak, S (1995). Introduction to Development Economics, Third edition. Routledge, London and New York. Thirlwal, A. P. (1983). Growth & Development with special reference to Developing Economies. Third Edition. The Macmillan Press.) Komiya, Ryutaro (Feb., 1959). A Note on Professor Mahalanobis' Model of Indian Economic Planning. The Review of Economics and Statistics. Vol. 41, No.1 pp. 29-35 Mahalanobis, P.C. (1955). The Approach of Operational Research to planning in India. Sankhya. Vol 16, Nos.1 & 2 pp 3-62, 63-130

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Mahalanobis, P.C. (1953). Some Observations on the Process of Growth of National Income. Sankhya. Vol 12, No. 4 pp 307-312 Mishra, Sanjeev Kumar (1994). Mahalanobis Approach to Planning in India. Deep and Deep Publications. Mitra, Ashoke (Mar., 1957). A Note on the Mahalanobis Model. The Economic Weekly. Vol. 9, No.11 pp. 372-378. Sanyal, Sanjeev (Aug., 2008). The Indian Renaissance: India's Rise After a Thousand Years of Decline. World Scientific Publishing Company.

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Profile for Kabir Sahni

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(Authors: Gautam, Kabir, Prabhash, Protyasha, Radhika, Sarth) An analysis of the prescriptive wave of the modernist movement on post-indepen...

Modern Times  

(Authors: Gautam, Kabir, Prabhash, Protyasha, Radhika, Sarth) An analysis of the prescriptive wave of the modernist movement on post-indepen...

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