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Indian Architecture: A Living Contradiction
|by Sonam Gupta|
Indian architecture is characterized by a plurality that makes generalization difficult. Comment with relevant examples.
Indian architecture is indeed not a single entity but a plural manifestation of the construction process being practiced in India. The scene with regards Indian architecture has probably forever been the same, as the regional as well as religious diversity in India always have been myriad. India being a land of various different languages cultures, practices, customs and beliefs amidst these it is but obvious to see numerous built forms because architecture is to a large extent an extension or manifestation of the feelings people of a particular place hold.
Talking of the present times, that is, the post independent India, the architecture of India has particularly taken a shape which has to be referred to as “plural”. As one side the newly independent India wants to rediscover its rich historical past , which probably has ever since the Aryan times attracted outsiders, invaders ,traders who when they come bring along with them their culture , which also is accepted by the country without any foregone conclusion as for any its own practiced way of life. At the very same time on the other hand she wants to establish herself in the world as a progressive nation, which accepts the global trends and walks with panache with the current fervor prevalent throughout the globe.
There are many facets or we may say branches stemming out from the single tree of “Indian architecture”. The sense of plurality in India was obvious because of the constant invasions throughout history, but now in today’s time – the plurality would be owing to the fact that even after getting independence from the British rule we haven’t really been able to free our minds of the fact that we once were ruled.
A Quest of Tradition
In around the 1970s, architects in India turned towards India’s traditional architecture for inspiration this ‘going back to roots’ marked the beginning of a new chapter in the evolution of present Indian architecture.
Regionalism and its Critical Side
Regionalism is the past and here in the twentieth century, has sometimes been associated with reactionary phenomena, not only from one measure but every approach that is of importance today be it economic or political.
Technology: A Tyrant
For a newly independent country like ours it would as some see it, be “backward” to cling to the past and not accept the newer giving of the technology, welcomed universally. Therefore in order to project an image of ourselves as that of a continually progressing country we must take an active participation in the technological vogue creating ripples on the surface of the earth. It is of this reason that, even in a land of traditional cultures we have architects making buildings, which are nothing less than a virtual city or dream far kept from reality, for instance buildings like the Vastu in Mumbai by Hafez contractor which is spelling whim, these days.
Both the architects though derive their inspirations from their roots.
Architecture in India can have numerous facets to itself, what is presently in vogue is also not just one single entity but an amalgam of the past reinvents as well as the technological advances being worked on all through the planet.
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