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Architectural structures should inspire while shaping the future. Believes Nuru Karim, Founder & Design Principal of NUDES. Here he explains how the projects transcend their initial purposes to create experiential spaces that connect people and places.

Change Through Architectural Structures
Shaan. The project explores the relationship between music and architecture
Shaan. Soft bodied forms are sited throughout the duplex penthouse
Change Through Architectural Structures
Shaan. Project for a celebrity musician and socialite wife in the heart of affluent Bandra.

Innovation Comes Through Asking the Right Questions

The dichotomy of ‘experimental’ and ‘real-world constraints’ is thought-provoking and acts as a fuel for innovation. As designers, are we immersing ourselves into a continual combat with the limitations, both internal and external? Are we realizing the uncharted territories?

 

Are we being honest and truthful to the design process and socioeconomic forces that govern the world of design and the built environment? Are we really pushing ourselves into finding the right problems rather than focusing on solutions? Innovations have origins not in the answers but in the way we frame and put forward our questions.

Mosque, UAE

The Process of Change is Bottom-up

Sustainable eco-urbanism requires an integrated multi-sectoral initiative involving community participation. It is supposed to be designed and led by the community. Of course, as designers, we have a crucial role to play, but largely the process is bottom up. Our job is to add the layer of sustainability to our understanding of urbanscapes. Appreciating the change in the social behaviour, hierarchy and ecosystem and responding to this transformation is an integral part of any designer’s growth experience.

BMB Art Gallery. An arthouse for paintings, installations, video Installations, sculpture etc.
Change Through Architectural Structures
BMB Art Gallery. The project explores painted zones of more or less opacity. Paint brushed with pixels and bytes
BMB Art Gallery. The project explores painted zones of more or less opacity. Paint brushed with pixels and bytes

Tradition and Future Should have a Dialogue

The tension between the two words, ‘experimental’ and ‘traditional’ is something that gets design thinking going. Issues related to the design of products, interiors, architectural spaces and urban experiences are subject to enormous constraints revolving primarily around “code” and “budgets” immersed within a complex socio-economic and cultural context.

 

It’s very important that the two contradicting worlds not only meet but also have a dialogue with each other in complete harmony. One could also analyse this construct through the lens of “using tradition as a springboard to dive into the future”. But really, the tri-relationship of ‘playful experimentation’, ‘serious research’ and ‘old-fashioned problem solving’ needs to be exhaled in a single seamless continuous breath.

“Baori”. Water Well
Mathsurf, India

The design is an Open System of Interrelated Issues

An architectural solution engages design as a cohesive process of interconnected issues. The integration takes place between various subjects like typology, digital methodologies, sustainability, structure, fabrication, materiality, and tactility among others.

 

The solution also brings into its domain the use of larger networks of the social, cultural, and environmental phenomenon. Transfer of technologies and ‘smart materials’, just like the use of ‘digital’ in both design and production enables the transformation of ‘design history’ into ‘design future’.

RyeWood International School.
Tent Hotel, China

Don’t Think, Just Look!

Today we need to stop ‘thinking’ so as to start again to ‘see’. “Design as Research” is a fundamental methodology that should be integral to every designer’s thought process. Research could also operate at several levels, ranging from philosophical positions to sector-specific analysis to technological systems. We need to develop an art of description where we question the methodology by which design projects are conceptualised, processed and documented.

 

Nature is a great teacher and a fantastic reservoir of research and design. Engagement with the nature-based systems in terms of researching and conversing is a way to both unlearn and re-learn. It’s very critical that architecture is deep-rooted within a context. But it should also address larger social, cultural and environmental issues.

Boutique Hotel. The ‘wave-pixel’ skin explores the potential of digital interfaces within the city

In a Collaboration, the Inter-Disciplinary Lines should Blur

Successful collaborative processes largely involve both stakeholders and professionals as an integrated “team-based” mechanism, integral to the design process and evolution of space design. Our collaborations range from artists, engineers, social scientists, product designers fashion designers etc.

 

The next up is philosophers. The extent of collaboration depends and varies from project to project largely based on design methodology, strategy and scale of the project. These changes in architectural practice also collapse the differences defining various disciplines working together, blurring the line within these disciplines and manufacturing processes.

Rebirth Retail Store. Differentiated hexagonal cellular aggregate formations created the central piece
Bad, Mumbai

Materials are Defined by Purpose

Materials explain ‘what it does?’ as opposed to ‘what it is?’ Recent advances in both technique and process where materials are concerned to have emerged into broad heads such as Shape performance, Optical performance, Sustainable performance and Responsive performance to name a few.

 

In Japan, for example, researchers are experimenting with intelligent systems in the construction of seismic resistant structures, wherein building foundation equipped with sensors amplify waves producing a change in ‘Material Elasticity’ to absorb the shock wave impact. Materials that provide products with one or more life cycles and are advantageous in terms of production, workability, dissemblance, reuse and environmental preservation.

MoonLight, 3D printed Lamp

Colour Constructs, Not Embellish

“Colour” should be defined as “structure” and also as a tactile experience loyal and honest to its material origins. It is not wallpaper, ornament or a candy wrap of a building. Generally, white and black are timeless in nature and respond brilliantly to atmospheric changes and varying light conditions.

 

But sometimes, these decisions are also driven programmatically. For example, retail stores and art galleries are strategically washed in white to exhibit the artworks in all honesty.

Dive in to Make a Difference

Besides chasing design philosophies and related commercial issues, it is critical that we commit ourselves to larger social/ humanitarian goals. Architecture has the power to do that. India faces several issues, including and not limited to lack of housing, lack of infrastructural services, lack of property rights, air pollution, traffic, serious lack of urban governance and many more. Question on a daily basis why you are here. The responsive design will augment the process of change.

S2. The hospital ancillary services building explores the topological transformation of a ‘mesh skin’

Published in Issue 04

The issue with the best insights from some of the top space designers and advertising tips from Happy Creatives with some exclusive mix of media experiments in type and digital art. So, go ahead

 

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Designing a room can be a fun experience but at the same time it can be tricky too. You can experiment with textures, colours, style, furniture and the feel. You can fulfil your dream décor in your study room because this room belongs to you solely. Perhaps, use classic, contemporary or new combinations for your study room.

Nowadays, there are several software and apps, which helps you to select the right place for each furniture and equipments in a room. You can try different layouts without physically moving the furniture and create different sample layouts.

 

These layouts help you to choose an appropriate look for your room. Every room has certain specific requirements based on its utility. Similarly, your study room too has certain specifics and it is very important to consider them while designing your study.

 

Enlisted below are some of the essentials, which you must look forward to if you wish to design a perfect study at your home:

Choose the Right Room

Every room requires a certain specific amount of space based on its functions. For instance, you cannot design a bedroom in a tiny space because you will end up having a congested room.

 

Therefore, your very first step should be to choose the right room for your study. One needs to consider the dimensions of a particular area before converting it into a bedroom, utility room or a dining area.

 

If you are fortunate enough of having multiple rooms you get the chance to select the room, which receives a lot of natural light and is spacious enough for you to enjoy your privacy.

Space to Move Around

Would you like to enter into a room, which does not have space wherein you can move about freely? Definitely, not and this is why you should make it a point to place limited stuff in your study.

 

Placing unnecessary furniture will increase your task of cleaning it on a regular basis and additionally it gives you a cluttered feeling. You feel the vibe of an unorganised room within that particular space. A de-cluttered room minimises the chance of you colliding with any furniture placed in the room.

 

You need comfortable space to sit around and move especially while working. If your room is not especially spacious make it a point to place furniture that consumes less space. A comfortable space and layout allows you to carry out your task swiftly.

Decent Desk and Comfortable Seating

Purchasing a big desk might sound like a good idea at first, but it might not be particularly conducive if you intend to work on it for long hours. This is why you should search for options well before you actually buy one. There are several varieties of sturdy desks, which give you ample leg space and while at the same time offering a brilliantly finished look. Possibly, choose one such type of desk as they last longer and make your room look just perfect!

 

Apart from the desk, you also need comfortable chairs to sit in. Make sure that you choose a colour, design and style of chair that blends well with your new desk. Opting for two contrasts can be a challenging task as they may or may not look good together.

Shelves! Shelves!

It is important to combine the right types of storage together. For instance, at some spaces you need a good amount of shelves which allow you to keep your favourite books. There might be other space where you need strong and secured cabinets to store your personal
belongings.

 

You need space of a particular dimension to place your printer/scanner and the same goes for your file cabinet. This means that you cannot design same sized cabinets all through your study. You need a combination of storage types to store your belongings in an organised manner.

Space for Meeting

The study is a space where you think about all your crucial decisions and thereupon come to a solution. There is a high possibility that someone may drop in or you may call somebody for a specific important discussion at your study.

 

For this purpose you need an appropriate seating arrangement. Some individuals prefer L-shaped seating arrangement. Others may choose a simple soft couch wherein 2-3 individuals can sit comfortably.

 

You can also opt for a seating arrangement, which allows two individuals to sit face-to- face with each other so that they can have a comfortable conversation. If you do not have space to place a couch or for any other kind of seating arrangement you can simply have your discussions at the coffee table in your house.

Lights! Lights!

Lights play a key role in any room. If you have sunlight pouring in through the window in the study, it will have a completely different look. The room will be more lively and vibrant which spreads a positive vibe.

 

On the other hand, a dark and shady environment with minimum lights will give your study an intense look. Make it a point to install the right lights so that you have sufficient light during the night as well.

 

It is suggested that you should allow natural light to flow in your study as it offers an optimistic feeling to you. You can choose to maximise the light effects by installing mirrors and light wall colours.

Temperature

Extremely hot or cold temperature can be a huge distraction during your work. One needs the comfortable temperature to work in and one way to do this by installing designer radiators. Possibly, seek advice from a reputed firm that offers you a wide array of choices so that you can pick the best model available in your budget.

 

With the right temperature in your study you can work unperturbed irrespective of the weather outside.

Pick a Corner

Loud noise and constant chattering can be a major cause of distraction. If you prefer to work in your own personal space and don’t like to be disturbed while working, make sure that you pick a quiet spot.

 

Perhaps, build your study towards the extreme corner of your house so that no pet, kid or visitor bothers you when you are working.

Personalise Touché

Although there are several guidelines to be followed while designing your study, you should not overlook your preferences. Your personal choices hold huge accountability while designing your study.

 

Mainly, your study should match your comfort level. It can consist of a piece of art that grabs your attention and an element that motivates you. For example, you can affix a painting that inspires to work hard.

 

You can opt for your favourite colour for the wall right in front of you and blend it with artistic texture.

 

Lastly, it is your choice which holds more significance because ultimately you are the one to work there and spend most of your time in that particular room.

Cleanliness

It is important to keep your study neat and clean as it allows free flow of work and minimises your hurdle. Keeping your study clean and tidy means that you have kept all your important files, books, documents and confidential data at their secured spots.

 

Additionally, you do not have to search the entire study when you need them. Instead, you can simply grab them from their précise spot. You can probably clean your study once a month just to check that all your documents are kept properly. You can update the files with the
latest documents in due time.

Matharoo Associates believe in clear emphasis on functionality, use of materials in their natural form and exercising restraint while designing a house or building. Their buildings are designed to unfold and reveal their secrets and meaning.

Matharoo Associates House
Curtain Door House with Wall of Light

1. The House With Balls

The 600 Sq-Yard weekend home for an aquarium owner comprises of four separate fish breeding tanks, an observatory which could double up as living space and a private sleeping area, all with provisions for biogas, rainwater collection for fishes and ETHE. On opening the house’s distinctive shutters, this linear space transforms completely into an infinite one, continuously mingling with and perpendicular to its original direction.

Matharoo Associates House
House with balls, Ahmedabad
Matharoo Associates House
House with balls, Ahmedabad

The house assumes a squat position and the curving wall to one side allows one to walk up the gentle slope on to the terrace running over the length of the house. Rainwater is harvested throughout the year to be used for the fish tanks and space made by this curving wall is used as a tank.

Matharoo Associates House
Prathama
Matharoo Associates House
Prathama

2. House with the Warped Court

The intention here was to use traditional design solutions, one of which is to center the spaces around a courtyard that provides a reclusive family area. The other was to use ‘Haveli’ inspired closed outer shell and hollow insides.

 

Irregular site lines act to generate a skewed wood form finished concrete box that encloses the house and provides a vision, climate, and noise buffer. These lines also help in making the best of the required margin space, engendering individuated clear and green spaces on all sides of the house enjoyed through the selective openings into these landscape gems.

Matharoo Associates House
Queen Mary’s High School

3. House with Wall of Light

The dwelling emulates the various facets of a diamond in several ways through the use of contrasting materials. The rough diamonds are represented by the concrete walls poured in stone casts and the polished ones are represented by the light emanating onyx wall.

Matharoo Associates House
Matharoo Associates Studio

One is opaque, the other transparent. One envelops the house and the other ties the house together. One absorbs, the other radiates. One is neutral, the other colourful. One is rough and the other is smooth.The core family and private areas are placed in a “black box” characterized by the use of Kadapa stone representing carbon, another avatar.

Matharoo Associates House
Patel Residence
Matharoo Associates House
House of Warped Court

One is opaque, the other transparent. One envelops the house and the other ties the house together. One absorbs, the other radiates. One is neutral, the other colourful. One is rough and the other is smooth.The core family and private areas are placed in a “black box” characterized by the use of Kadapa stone representing carbon, another avatar of the diamond. The base flooring is economical and common but robust kota stone as represents continuity and is set against the chic neutrality of travertine representing contemporary living.

Matharoo Associates House
India Pavilion

The three identical staircases are aligned to the three site angles converging near the entrance; one is placed on the floor, second on the wall and the third on the ceiling; signifying the illusionary world of diamonds.

Matharoo Associates House
Sand Stone and Water, house in Jodhpur

Published in Issue 01

With cover illustrations by Archan Nair, this issue brings inspiring Digital illustrations, Extreme Graffiti, expert’s insights on space design and many more!

 

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Designers often face the dilemma of accommodating all the functionalities of their clients when designing a home with space constraint. Below showcases how the designers of UA Lab tackled this problem without compromising on the aesthetics or functionality.

Space Design

The Challenge:

With the average size of apartments shrinking in all the major cities, designing a home to accommodate the functionalities and comfort of the residents is a daunting task. When the designers of UA Lab were assigned the task to create a spacious layout to integrate work and living spaces in a 62 sq. mt. apartment, they faced the predicament of injecting style and personality without making it look cramped or cluttered.

Space Design

The Solution:

Relying on an open plan to maximize the internal layout with minimum brick walls, the designers decided to separate the spaces through multi-functional vertical frames transitioning from transparent to porous and solid planes. These frames, made out of Valsadi Sag (reclaimed wood) are open at the top and the bottom (towards the ceiling and the floor) to preserve the continuity of the space as it transcends to different functional areas. Keeping the size of the wooden members and the material constant even with the furniture, the interiors amalgamate harmoniously and maintain uniformity in the space.

Space Design

The designated areas in this home are not confined and serve as multipurpose depending on the occasion or need. This quality creates openness and makes it spacious while being functional as well. A fine example of the same is the living area of the apartment that can be accessed from the work space, acting as the formal meeting area when necessary.

Space Design

The Result:

The careful selection of a single material and size with similar design vocabulary in the entire space adds a tasteful monolithic character. The clear finish of the reclaimed wood (polished with Tel-paani technique) brings sophistication and adds rustic charm as all the joinery details are visible to the eye. By infusing design and functionality into the vertical frames, the entire apartment is naturally lit and well ventilated as the transparent and porous planes allow indirect light; while the solid planes act as storage units. The interior design of this charming apartment showcases how intelligent design solutions can bring warmth and character to space without compromising on the functionalities.

Space Design

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