Inaugural edition of AP Kanvinde Memorial Lecture Series witnesses enlightening deliberations on architecture

Roorkee: Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Roorkee witnessed an enlightening discussion on architecture on the inaugural edition of the AP Kanvinde Memorial Lecture Series. It was organized by the Department of Architecture and Planning in honour of Late Architect Padma Shri A.P. Kanvinde, who is also well known as the Father of Modern (Post Independent) Indian Architecture. The theme of the inaugural session was ‘Architecture in Context.’ The event was graced by Architect Rahul Mehrotra, a renowned scholar and Professor, Harvard University, USA and Architect Sanjay Kanvinde as esteemed speakers. Prof. Ajit K. Chaturvedi, Director, IIT Roorkee, Prof. Gaurav Raheja, Convener, AP Kanvinde Lecture Series and Prof. P. S. Chani welcomed the speakers on behalf of the institute.

Architect Sanjay Kanvinde reflected upon the works and philosophies of Architect A P Kanvinde, through archives of his contributions to IIT Roorkee, including that of Central Building Research Institute (CBRI). He shared a quote from A P Kanvinde saying, “My buildings are my best memory. No other memory is required.”

Architect Rahul Mehrotra, one of the speakers, said “Architects and discipline must evolve and respond to the context of the current time in tangible terms like the site, climate etc. and even more relevant as intangible terms like lifestyle and culture of people, including the embedded history of the place.”

He strongly advocated the architects constantly enlarge the ‘sphere of concern’ while simultaneously exert to build the sphere of influence in shaping the architecture of the future through society.

Prof. Ajit K. Chaturvedi, Director, IIT Roorkee, said: “Padma Shri AP Kanvinde was an architect par excellence whose work continues to inspire the present generation of architects. The inaugural lecture by world renowned architect Rahul Mehrotra has set the tone for the subsequent editions of this lecture series.”

Architect Rahul Mehrotra inspired the audience through his works showcasing innovative ways to respond to localized climatic and human contexts while designing small and large scale projects ranging from housings to workplaces. He also showcased several interesting projects designed like the Lab of the Future at Novartis Campus, Basel, Switzerland, Library at School of Architecture, CEPT Ahmedabad and a unique social housing project for 100 elephants and their caretakers in Jaipur.

Towards the end, Prof. Mehrotra addressed questions raised by the participants. His enlightening lecture inspired a wide range of audience, including faculty and students of IIT Roorkee.
The initiative concluded with a vote of thanks by Prof. Gaurav Raheja, Convener of the A P Kanvinde Lecture Series.

AP Kanvinde was a renowned architect who designed several buildings like Civil & Mechanical Engineering Departments, Khosla International House, Saharanpur, IIT Kanpur, National Council of Applied National Research and Ganga Bhawan for IIT Roorkee in the erstwhile University of Roorkee, National Science Center, New Delhi, etc. He endorsed functionalist approaches with elements of Brutalist architecture. The highlight of his designs was a grid of columns to form a matrix giving a structural and spatial dimension. He was awarded IIA Baburao Mhatre Gold Medal and Padma Shri.