SPACES & MATERIAL POETRIES: Badrinath Kaleru & Prerna Kaleru

SPACES & MATERIAL POETRIES: Badrinath Kaleru & Prerna Kaleru

Badrinath Kaleru & Prerna Kaleru, Founders, Studio Ardete, Chandigarh

Believing that every problem has the capacity to inspire unique and creative solutions that motivate growth, the young duo of Badrinath Kaleru and Prerna Kaleru, founded Studio Ardete in the year 2010. Located in Chandigarh, India, the team at Studio Ardete aims to make each project they undertake, a study in logical and comprehensive designing. Their vision is to design spaces that would evolve into art, enriching the lives of people inhabiting them. Working on projects ranging from architecture to interiors, the architects at Ardete are always motivated to transform what is regular and conventional and flirt with the boundaries of art in architecture.

A Project by Badrinath Kaleru & Prerna Kaleru: A Picturesque house in Chandigarh

The Terrace House is an 836 sq m residential project in one of the privileged locations of Chandigarh flanked with green belt on one side and a view to the Shivaliks, juxtapose against Corbusier’s urban landscape. The architects’ primary design response was to encourage the occupant of the space to be in a constant dialogue with either nature or art and sometimes with both.

In response to David Craib’s quote “Design should never say, Look at me! It should always say, Look at this!” the most irrefutable thing was to raise the common leisure zone to the top of the house. The terrace is morphed into an observation deck as it captures a snap of the hills.

The canopy of trees from the green belt gives an illusion of an infinite green to the terrace garden. It is this introduction of raw greens that makes the swimming pool sensual and it becomes a part of something more than a physical activity.

The way design responds to nature is sometimes almost too literal like the stone laying around the existing mango trees and at other times it is in the form of art left to the imagination of the occupant. There is a construction sincerity that prevails as levels interplay with each other to balance the depth of the pool with terrace level. The interiors follow the same logic of purity.

There is a thoughtful experiential sequence in the below floors. As one meanders through the living spaces on the ground your own existentiality is felt by the translucent partitions. It aids as a visual invitation to spaces above and beyond you. Nature almost always sees you naked through the large glass doors and windows. Elements like a carved courtyard, glass bricks, louvers, pergolas, and other openings catalyse dialogue between the observer and observed via the play of light, shade, ventilation and the colours of nature.

The ground floor plan is a drama between three zones. It grades from public space like the great room and living area ambiguously interlocked with semi-private areas of the kitchen, dining lounge and family lounge that finally meets the private bedrooms at the rear end.

The first floor is a Lego arrangement of three bedrooms each having its own private terrace. The spatial quality of these terraces is unique to one another.

The master bedroom is intentionally a trapezoidal plan to re-orient the room for best vista and reemphasize the importance of biophilia. The bed is placed in the center to allow for a free flow of energy along borders but more than that it gives an ode to the wall that makes a room.

At some parts, flooring of most everyday spaces-the bedroom and the terrace merges, blurring the boundaries between what is inside and what we consider outside.

At parts, existentiality is further exaggerated by mirror mosaic tiles on ceilings, in chandeliers or at times as wall-art where the reflection of you
becomes nature. The observer becomes the subject of their own observation.

It is an attempt to redefine nature which leaves the occupant cognizant of his/ her own presence.

Project Details

Name: Terrace House
Location: Chandigarh
Plot Area: 836 sq m | Built up Area : 796 sq m
Start Year: 2016 | End Year: 2019
Principal Architects: Badrinath Kaleru and Prerna Kaleru
Photo Credits: Purnesh Dev Nikhanj

SR Material Poetries

When an idea embraces materials, different forms and expressions are born.

As the touch of a musician sparks life to an inert musical instrument, similarly, a material comes to life when a designer meshes an idea with it.

In the projects of Architecture and Interior, often the central theme and the cerebral idea gain all the attention, get talked about, and walk away with all the glory. But then, there are significant contributions and untold stories underneath, which never get surfaced but without which no laurel was ever possible.

During project execution, one goes through so many trials and errors, experiments, faces unexpected challenges, deals with changes in client’s brief, works with the artisans, partners with other firms, plays with the colours and materials, laughs, cries, learns, and THEN succeeds together. Surfaces Reporter’s Spaces & Material Poetries is an honest attempt to closely observe this progression and bring to life the hidden, unknown and untold stories with all the “emotions and learnings”.

When we discuss design by design, sharing becomes teaching, reading becomes learning, and the story becomes inspiring. These stories are from varied projects and personas - from the maestros to the amateurs.

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