“The role which the schools have to play is to expose students to various situations and train them to cultivate and appreciate values so that they can experience and sharpen their senses through observation and practice” - Kanvinde
Father of Modern Indian Architecture
Country of Origin:
Biography: He entered the Architecture Department at Sir J.J. School of Art in 1935 then headed by Claude Batley, who was also the premier architect of the country. He passed out in 1941. 1943, he joined the newly formed Council for Scientific and Industrial Research as architect. Achyut Kanvinde attended Harvard Graduate school of Design in 1945. In ‘47 appointed as the Chief Architect of CSIR. Formed Kanvinde and Rai in 1955. He was educated under Walter Gropius at Harvard University, where he graduated with a master’s degree in architecture in 1947. After returning to India in 1948 he worked on the planning and design of several laboratories for the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research. His early projects for the ATRIA (Ahmadabad Textiles Industries Research Association) and the headquarters for the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, New Delhi (both 1954), demonstrate the austere simplicity of the Bauhaus style. Kanvinde set up a private practice with the architect Shaukat Rai (b 1922) in 1955 and designed numerous institutional buildings, housing and industrial complexes for both the government and private clients. Most of these are facilities for education and research and include the Indian Institute of Technology (1960–65), Kanpur, the National Dairy Development Board (1974), Anand, the Nehru Science Centre (1982), Bombay, and the National Science Centre (1984), New Delhi. All Kanvinde’s buildings were conceived in a strict modernist vocabulary. The Nehru Science Centre, for example, has a concrete frame structure infilled with brick panels and plastered in a fine stone grit finish. The building accommodates a complex of workshops, library, lecture halls and observatory, and takes advantage of sloping terrain to isolate each function.
Achivements: Kanvinde served as a member of the Delhi Urban Arts Commission (1974–9) and was also President of the Indian Institute of Architects (1974–6). He guided the allocation of research funds as Chairman (1970–75) of the Scientific and Finance Section of the Central Building Research Institute, Roorkee, the government’s primary experimental building organization. He served on juries for national and international competitions and projects and lectured at the schools of architecture in New Delhi, Ahmadabad and Bombay. Kanvinde also co-authored Campus Design in India , which was sponsored by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). In 1975 he received the Padma Shree, a national award for excellence, and in 1985 the Gold Medal of the Indian Institute of Architects.
* Awarded Padma Shree in 1976.
* President IIA (1974-75)
* Co-Authored book “Campus Design in India”.
* IIA’s Babu Rao Mhatre Gold Medal for life time achievement in 1985
* Great Masters Award from JK Industries Ltd. in 1993.
* Was also a part of the jury on the competition for the Indira Gandhi National Center for Arts, along with B.V. Doshi.
SOME OF HIS PROJECTS ARE :
• Dudhsagar Dairy Complex, Mehsana
• National Dairy Development Board, New Delhi
• National Science Centre, New Delhi
• Nehru Science Centre, New Delhi
• IIT Kanpur
AN ANALYSIS OF THE TIMELINE:
The institutional buildings he designed in the first five years, are conservative. All having: * similar facades.
* Horizontal, clean volumes,
* aesthetically pleasing proportions of fenestration.
* Ribbon windows.
* A grid frame structure- unexposed, and plastered exterior finish. Followed by an experimental phase- in the course of the...
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