Faculty: Shubhra Raje | Kevin Low

TA: Nikhil Makhijani

Towards a Critical Project and a Project of Criticism. Situation: Capital Complex, Chandigarh

The prevalent discourse on architecture positions the architectural project as a singular act, made separate from the continuity and collective condition of the environment which we are (still) in obligation to share. The studio challenges this tendency to iconize the architectural project within our disciplinary discourse by a persistent curiosity to understand it as a part of the built environment, assessing its viability and limitations through a systematic inquiry into the conditions and consequences of its design. This semester, through the discovery of relevant questions, the studio will investigate Capitol Complex, Chandigarh, a project familiar to us through its reputation and the established narratives of its successes. Students will identify problems inherent in the existing design by way of vital relationships it fails to consider. Subtle, yet profound intervention/s that resolve the problems identified will follow, shifting the emphasis from design solutions derived primarily from the expression of form to that of solving problems of relevance, we will rekindle the potential of program, the meaning of use and continuity of the built environment as an understanding of what constitutes critical architecture in service of responsibility over mere reputation.

Studio Unit

Capitol complex reconstituted as a park with the university of arts and sciences as a means to reconcile governance with the larger body politic. (Collective Work)

Plan collectively re-membered, guided by philosophical underpinnings taken from the studio’s analysis of the degrees of separation, or more physical problems related to siting and deeper relationships between the projects undertaken. (Individual Projects, collected)

The common ground, shifting the emphasis from formally expressive objectness of space and architecture towards a continuity of the built environment. (Individual Projects, collected)

An intervention of university dormitories, each small and singular blocked and dispersed throughout the city within close proximity to public transport lines or the linear parks, provide access to the university, serving the deeper philosophical and functional aspects of connection with the people and qualifying the design of a 'public realm’. (Sasidhar Mahanti, Aayushi Tapiawala)