A tryst with experiments

Architect Shankar Narayan’s office is a make-shift space that interests all

Walk into architect Shankar Narayan’s office in Trimulgherry and you feel like you have walked into a laboratory experiment in interiors. Shankar laughs it off, as this isn’t the first time he has heard that. Even his clients walk into the office and the first 10 minutes are always spent discussing the layout of his office.

Why so? Shankar’s office is quite an experimental one, with minimum use of resources for maximum impact. The architect believes in eco-minimalism. He says, “Nowadays, the meaning of minimalism is restricted to minimum use of artefacts, but its true essence lies in the minimal use of resources and finding aesthetic value in that.”

His ideas are implemented in his own office. His office ceiling is made of just three inches (instead of the normal eight inches) pre-cast slab with tandur stone slab as structural material. The furniture in the office is actually put together and there is no use of new wood. Leftover wood from construction work, like planks of wood have been put together to make a table. An old steel table that has been transformed into a computer stand and an old dish TV antenna has been used as a reflector for lighting.

The list is endless. “I see an inherent beauty in the way things are naturally. That’s why even the steel doors are not painted on,” says Shankar. Shankar’s cabin has a table made out of the wood from his previous office with a stone slab. His chair, meanwhile, is 80 years old that Shankar bought from a railway scrap yard for just Rs15 many years ago.

But one of the most interesting things in this 800 sq. ft. office is its very eco-friendly. There are windows all around, with sunlight streaming in and which is why it’s not surprising that the electricity bill for the whole building is just about Rs1800 per month. “The whole construction is 3,000 sq. ft in area. The watchman’s family lives downstairs and they consume more electricity than us,” Shankar says with a laugh.

( Source : deccan chronicle )
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