The Institue For Indology building in Ahmedabad is one of Balkrishna Doshi's first public buildings as a solo artist outside of Le Corbusier's office.
The peripheral ambulatory/shade zone is typologically Indian. It can also be thought of, here, as a kind of thickening of the brise-soleil into occupiable space. But at that point we're chasing ourselves in circles - wasn't the brise-soleil itself in some sense inspired by these kinds of interstitial spaces sheltered behind screens. The composition, meanwhile, is quite familiar - this is a near cousin to the elevation of the unbuilt Governor's Mansion for Chandigarh.
Of course, since Doshi was in the office for that project, it's again hard to say where exactly the idea originated.
To preserve the rare manuscripts and their dissemination the architect proposed a well-lighted and ventilated, half-buried basement, orientated to the north-south axis. The raised floor is provided for administration and the first floor, a conference hall with peripheral balconies.
The incorporation of these solutions in a reinforced concrete form gave the institute building the form of a ship, and the detailing of that of a wooden haveli.
The architect considered lighting, temperature and humidity levels to preserve the ancient artefacts stored inside.
The design was inspired in part by Kurashiki Town Hall project, by 1987 Pritzker Laureate Kenzo Tange.
*Information and Image Courtesy: sangath.org
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