Design

Influenced by the here and now

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To Martand Khosla, the definition of design is simple. He sees it as the ability to improve the usability of a space or object while attributing an aesthetic dimension to it. “In a manner that the experience of the object or space moves beyond the visual or intellectual,” he says.

Khosla, a partner at New Delhi-based Romi Khosla Design Studio (RKDS), studied architecture at Architectural Association in London and graduated in 2001. He worked briefly in London at a firm called Allies and Morrison before returning to India. The man started his practice by designing structures and sets for theatre, fashion and public events and soon moved on to a variety of projects.

RKDS was set up in end-2001, early-2002 with a project to design patient accommodation for a hospital in West Delhi.

Today, the consultancy led by architects Romi and Martand Khosla engages in creative and contemporary design with a wide range of projects including luxury hotels, educational buildings for schools and universities, retail locations, small specialised interiors and urban planning.The studio, in its present form, was rebranded as a dynamic design centre intended to be scale agnostic but also, particularly, class agnostic. “Our intention was to design a large variety of spaces for users from varied socio-economic backgrounds. Over the last 10 years, we have designed ephemeral event spaces, retail interiors, buildings for charitable organisations and educational institutions, urban sculptural installations and a host of furniture and products. More recently, we find ourselves working on larger architectural projects,” says Khosla.

The idea of the contemporary is central to the design philosophy. “Our approach would be to respond to the conditions of a site and situate our building within the context in a modern yet extremely local manner. This approach is carried through the detailing process as well,” he says.

The studio maximises the use of recycled material. Speaking of influences, Khosla cites a variety, leaning heavily towards cinema, literature and art. “Some of my influences have been Le Corbusier, Peter Zumthor, Marcel Duchamp, Berthold Romanovich Lubetkin, Andrei Tarkovsky and Constructivism,” he says.

Khosla’s work has been extensively covered by national and international media. His students’ canteen in New Delhi was featured in the UK as one of the best buildings of the 21st century.

Several of his buildings, including the hospice for poor patients in New Delhi and the MF Husain Art Gallery, have won the World Architecture Award.


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Printable version | Jan 28, 2022 11:09:43 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/homes-and-gardens/design/influenced-by-the-here-and-now/article6815153.ece

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