The World Monuments Fund has announced their 2018 World Monuments Watch, highlighting 25 cultural sites from across the globe currently at risk due to economic, political or natural threats. Covering more than 30 countries and territories, these monuments represent sites of exceptional cultural value dating from prehistory to the 20th century.
This episode of Monocle 24's On Design podcast, which briefly surveys the state of Indian architecture and suggests a blueprint for a 21st Century vernacular, was written and recorded by ArchDaily's European Editor at Large, James Taylor-Foster.
In the first half of 2016 an exhibition was opened in Mumbai. The State of Architecture, as it was known, sought to put contemporary Indian building in the spotlight in order to map trends post-independence and, more importantly, provoke a conversation both historical and in relation to where things are heading.
The second annual Z-Axis Conference, organised by the Charles Correa Foundation, will center on the notion of Buildings As Ideas. Held in the western Indian city of Goa at the Kala Academy, one of Correa's later projects, the conference is a tribute to his memory and belief that "buildings are ideas that manifest and take form." Jean Pierre Crousse, of Lima-based practice Barclay & Crousse, will open the conference with the keynote address; other international speakers include Camilo Rebelo, Ilze Wolff, Yung Ho Chang, Dick van Gameren and ArchDaily's James Taylor-Foster.
In the late 1970s, the Government of India launched an initiative to build in every state capital an institution to celebrate the cultural and creative output of the nation. Although the scheme was largely unsuccessful, one shining example remains: Bharat Bhavan (‘India House’), located in Bhopal.
Designed by Indian architectural luminary Charles Correa, this multi-arts center first opened its doors in 1982. More than thirty years later, it continues to house a variety of cultural facilities and play host to multitude of arts events. The design of the complex is a product of Correa’s mission to establish a modern architectural style specific to India and distinct from European Modernism. Drawing on the plentiful source material provided by the rich architectural heritage of his home country, at Bharat Bhavan Correa produced a building for the modern era which manages to also remain firmly rooted in the vernacular traditions of India’s past.
The Charles Correa Foundation is organizing its second annual Z-Axis Conference entitled Buildings As Ideas, which will focus on buildings and the nature of the questions they raise. The inaugural conference, Great City... Terrible Place, which was held in March 2015, intended to describe the city.
A year ago today, on June 16th 2015, the architectural community lost Charles Correa (b.1930) – a man often referred to as “India’s Greatest Architect” and a person whose impact on the built environment extended far beyond his own native country. Rooted in India, Correa’s work blended Modernity and traditional vernacular styles to form architecture with a universal appeal. Over the course of his career, this work earned him—among many others—awards including the 1984 RIBA Royal Gold Medal (UK), the 1994 Praemium Imperiale (Japan), and the 2006 Padma Vibhushan (India’s second highest civilian honor).
Through his buildings we, as both architects and people who experience space, have learnt about the lyrical qualities of light and shade, the beauty that can be found in humble materials, the power of color, and the joy of woven narratives in space. Perhaps more than anything else, however, it was his belief in the notion that architecture can shape society which ensures the continued relevance of his work. “At it’s most vital, architecture is an agent of change,” Correa once wrote. “To invent tomorrow – that is its finest function.”
Charles Correa, widely considered to be one of India's greatest living architects, died yesterday in Mumbai at the age of 84. Correa, who was also a respected urban planner and renowned activist for the quality of cities, had been the recipient of the RIBA Gold Medal in 1984, the Praemium Imperiale in 1994, and the 7th Aga Khan Award for Architecture in 1998. His work had also been recognised with one of India's highest civilian honours, the Padma Shri, in 1972. In 2013 Correa donated over 6000 drawings and 150 models from his archives to the RIBA in London.
Mr. Charles Correa's architectural marvels are widely cherished, reflecting his brilliance, innovative zeal & wonderful aesthetic sense: PM— PMO India (@PMOIndia) June 17, 2015
Curated by the Charles Correa Foundation, the Z Axis is an annual conference bringing together pioneers, thought leaders, influencers, professionals, and students in the fields of architecture and urban design to create an intellectual community focused on issues related to the context of India and the developing world. Fifteen speakers will gather from across the globe to explore the theme of Great City…Terrible Place, including Charles Correa, David Adjaye, Alfredo Brillembourg of Urban Think Tank, Spain's "guerrilla architect" Santiago Cirugeda, Simone Sfriso of Studio TAM Associati and more.
Charles Correa, considered one of India's greatest architects, is celebrated for his post-war work in India in which he connects modernism with local traditions. Digital magazine, uncube, has dedicated a full issue to this renowned architect and includes reviews of the RIBA exhibition currently on view in London, a look at his most influential architectural projects, assesses his role as urbanist and planner, and an interview in which Correa reflects on his own career.
After generously donating an archive of over 6000 drawings and 150 projects, architect Charles Correa sat down with RIBA President Angela Brady to discuss his life and work as one of “India’s greatest architects.” The short interview touches on a wide range of topics, from the inspiration behind some of his greatest projects to advice for future architecture students.
“The thing about architecture is that you cannot teach it. You can learn it, but you cannot teach it. And a good school is a school which makes you passionate about architecture and that teaches you how to ask questions. [...] If you know how to ask the right questions, you will develop your own philosophy and your own visual vocabulary.”
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) presents the first major UK exhibition showcasing the work of renowned Indian architect Charles Correa (born in 1930). Rooted both in modernism and the rich traditions of people, place and climate, Correa has played a pivotal role in the creation of an architecture and urbanism for post-war India. He has designed some of the most outstanding buildings in India and has received many of the world’s most important architecture awards including the RIBA Royal Gold Medal (1984), Aga Khan Award for Architecture (1988) and Japan’s Praemium Imperiale (1994), and is still working today.
ReferencesCharles Correa Associates Website, Identity Housing