Architectural Anachronism is Good, Business Line, Aug 2013

This article, published in the Home & Style supplement of The Hindu Business Line, talks about the traditional style of architecture adopted by a couple who built their home in Chennai. The article looks at the inspiration for the unique features incorporated in the interior design, and problems faced during construction. The tone is kept light and focuses more on a personal telling of a home-builder’s views rather than an account of the ‘technical’ details.

Nestled in a corner of a small lane that branches off from East Coast Road, Ramesh and Priya’s (names changed) house reminds one of ancestral homes in Karaikudi. “Some of our friends ask us if this house is hundred years old,” smiles Priya as she greets me at the door.

There are raised platforms or “thinnais” near the steps leading to the doorway, reminding one of scenes from R. K. Narayan’s novels. Sunlight streams in from the roof down to the central courtyard, which is bounded by thick pillars. “The courtyard is a common feature not only in traditional Indian homes, but also in Italy and France,” says Ramesh, Priya’s husband.

Ramesh and Priya lived in the US for several years before deciding to move back to Chennai. About five years ago, the couple asked an architect based in Pondicherry to create the blueprint. The house was built over three-and-a-half years.

(The article continues – read it in full at the Business Line website: Architectural Anachronism is good)


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