May 30, 2023

'The Blossom' at Madurai

The Blossom -  an experiment in cubistic 'solids & voids' , that I designed in the year 2003-04 for the Abrahams at the Dennys Gardens. 

It was a small site and I used the central open to sky courtyard to give the clients their desired garden (both of them were Botany Professors and loved the greenary). The Abrahams were a wonderful client who trusted my abilities and got rewarded with a straight forward elegant house that they are extremely proud of.  

May 28, 2023

Rasiq house at Madurai

A house I had designed in 2010 for Mr.Rasiq at Park town, Madurai. Mr.Rasiq had seen few of my works in my blog and contacted me to design his dream house. He was working in the middle east, I was at Bangalore and his family was at Madurai. The whole design interaction process happened only on phone and email. Of course the final product was loved by the clients. 

May 20, 2023

PCS house - a riot of colors!

I had designed this house for Mr.P.Chandrashekar's family in 2004, just before I left for Kabul. I experimented with a play of curves and colours. We made sure that the beautiful mango and neem trees in the site were preserved. The house is planned around a Courtyard that let's in abundant light and ventilation.A small but delightful project.

May 19, 2023

PKM house at Madurai

3D conceptual rendering 

 This is a house I had designed for PKM family at Anna Nagar, Madurai. My friend Mr.Balan (Ramanand builders) constructed it.

May 17, 2023

My childhood unusual Pets

As a kid I had some very interesting was very simple then and pets were very much an inseparable part of my childhood. I have tried to recollect my memories on a few interesting and unusual ones...

1. Wild Guppies -  These were tiny wild guppies that we used to catch from a local drain (suduthanni vaaikal) that ran inside the Madurai railway colony. The males come in an array of colors and used to add a lot of life to my aquarium. 

2. River fishes - Fishing with a towel in the Vaigai river along with my street friends was great fun. The most common catch was a cichlid kind of flat fish that grew to a length of about 2.5 inches. We used to call them as "sappatai". I used to keep them in a seperate tub along with few other river fishes , shrimps and snails.

3. Squirrel -  A baby Squirrel once fell out of its nest and I had to rescue the little one. I named him 'Bunny' and even used to carry it in my pocket to school. As Bunny grew and his teeth started growing, he used to nimble on everything at home and used to drive  my mom crazy. He was a fun pet and once he was big enough, I let him out into a tree in the neighborhood where he soon found his friends.

4. Ponnvandu - I used to catch these golden beetles from the kodikapuli trees (puthecellobium dulce) inside the YMCC school campus at the end of our street. I kept them in shoe boxes or Horlicks Bottles with perforated caps  and sometimes took them to school in a matchbox to showoff to schoolmates!

5. Hare-   Our family had gone to my grandma's house in Chennai for our annual school vacation. It must have been the mid 80s. My Uncle, Rev.Augustine Andrews took us on a picnic to the Adyar children's park. While we were resting for lunch,  we found a small Hare that had accidentally fallen into a dry water fountain pit that was next to where we had sat for lunch. It was totally exhausted (no idea how long it must have been there in that pit) and my uncle picked it up by the ear and rescued the little fellow. We brought him home and he became my playmate for the entire duration of our vacation. Unfortunately my parents didn't allow me to bring it with me to Madurai and I had to leave it in my Grandma's house. 

6. Country Hens - My grandmother bought for me two country hens from the local karimedu market. One was white and the other was black. My dad had leghorns kept in a coop for eggs. They were always inside the coop and hence no fun. But these country hens were free ranging and much more entertaining! At dusk, they used to retire on the mulberry tree in our side yard. They befriended a neighbor's rooster and he too started retiring to our mulberry tree after dusk. Soon both the hens started laying eggs. While we consumed the white hen's eggs, we saved the black hen's eggs for hatching. To our surprise, the black hen did not sit for hatching while the white hen was ready. So we let the white hen to hatch the black hen's eggs. After 21 days we saw 8 lovely chicks. The whole life process was a memorable experience for me as a kid!

7. Black Headed Munias - My grandpa gifted me 6 of these birds that he bought from our local shanty market. He even got a carpenter to build a proper cage house for the birds. The munia's are like sparrows and are very chirpy and fun to have as pets. But after two of them died after some months, I was so saddened that I opened the cage and let the others fly away.

So what unusual pets do you have or have had in the past? 

May 15, 2023

Mr.Radhakrishnan's house, Madurai

 A modern house I had designed for Mr.Radhakrishnan near Pandikoil, Madurai. 

The small demon faces in red are fixed by the owner on the front facade to cast out the "evil eyes"... A superstition that exists in our part of the world!

Contractor : Ramanand Builders

May 14, 2023

Memorial design_year 2004

 A structural experiment in folded plates... 

This was my proposed memorial design for the late Mr.Tha.Kiruttinan, a DMK ex- minister who was brutally murdered in Madurai in 2003. The memorial was planned by his family and supporters in the party to keep his memory alive. But for some reason, the design never saw the light of day. 

May 10, 2023

Colors of Madurai

 Pattukottai vellaiamman temple at new jail road, Madurai

Clicked on the way...

May 8, 2023

Starchitect !

With Ar.Contractor at the St.Regis, enjoying the skyline of Mumbai

I had the wonderful opportunity to interact with the most famous "Star" Architect (Starchitect) of India - Mr.Hafeez Contractor for our new project at Kolkata. 


One of the design workshop sessions at his office

I had met him almost 26 years ago when I was an architecture student. He had given a presentation of his works at the Young Architects festival at Nagpur in 1997. 

Hafeez is a versatile and extremely talented Architect...He is extremely commercial and loud in his approach and hence not very much liked by purists. You can love or hate him..but you can not ignore him. He has designed some of the most notable buildings in India. There is no denying the fact that he is an ikon in the construction industry. 

YAF 1997 - with Mr.Contractor along with my classmates