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July 28, 2012

Sangath: Lose track to come back



Surely, I lost my way!

I guess it was in 2005.  I stood on the front lawn facing the Sangath searching for the ceremonious entry into the much famous studio of B V Doshi. The entrance itself was deceptive, to say the least. I was very excited to visit the place as a part of an architectural ‘pilgrimage’ to Ahmadabad which also included great buildings like Sangrahalaya, IIMA, Mill owner’s Association building etc. 


Then to my surprise, none other than B V Doshi came out of the building. He spotted me. I was a bit hesitant to meet the master and was literally ashamed to ask for the way. To my surprise, he asked me whether I am looking for my way to get in. With a smile on his lips, he pointed towards a circuitous pathway that disappeared behind the greenery. Upon my request to see his studio, he told me to take a look around, taking my time.


"YOU HAVE TO LOSE TRACK TO COME BACK. AND THIS IS WHAT GIVES YOU THE CHANCE TO THINK AGAIN. ANXIETY, UNEXPECTEDNESS IS THE KEY TO ARCHITECTURE."

July 12, 2012

(YGWYPF) You get what you pay for.



There is an old Chinese saying: 一分一分, "yi fen qian, yi fen huo" (pronounced ee fen chee-ahn, ee fen hoo-oh), which gets translated into the post title ‘You get what you pay for.’ 



People are accustomed to understand the adage when they buy a luxury car, an apartment or an iPhone. Surprisingly, they pretend to forget it when they are commissioning an Architect. The curious fact is, an architect’s role has a lot of subjectivity into it that one will not be able to gauge it from the receiving end. (You could easily compare the features between a Merc and an Audi before signing the cheque).

"THE SADDEST PART IS, IN MOST OF THE CASES, LESS PAY RESULTS IN SUBSTANDARD WORK."

July 4, 2012

Architect's schedule

I always wondered how to manage time efficiently. The problem becomes manifold when the case of concern is a creative personnel.




You have the classical time-management principles urging you to pack-in the maximum deliverable into a fixed time frame. They try to teach you to do 'multitasking'. You can thus learn the circus of having a coffee while riding a bus and read the newspaper as well. According to your proficiency, you can add more activities to it. I found it utterly foolish to practice it in a creative field. The only thing I can do along with having coffee and doodling with pencil designing is to listen to songs. But curiously, I cannot continue it for long unless the songs are of a particular genre! My point is, its not how many things you do that matter, but what you did.



"THERE HAS TO BE A 'DESIGNER'S SCHEDULE' AND A 'MANAGER'S SCHEDULE'. IN AN IDEAL SCENARIO, BOTH SHOULD NOT COINCIDE."

July 3, 2012

To frame it or not?



I remember reading it somewhere that a guy went to a great place to watch sunset and missed it entirely because he tried to get it all photographed within the few minutes when it happened. All he left with was a handful of digital photographs and the darkness that surrounded him after the sunset. For the moment he was triumphant. He was able to capture the rare sight at various split seconds. But after returning from the place, he soon realized that he actually missed the entire sunset! Instead of soaking into the moment and experience it, he saw it through a second ‘eye’- a far inferior one than the original.


"HE GETS SO BUSY IN CLICKING AND ADJUSTING THE MACHINE TO GET THE PERFECT FRAME THAT, MANY A TIMES, HE MISSES THE REAL PICTURE."
The story was found very familiar to me.