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Modernity, Architecture and Urbanism in India

Professor Soumyen Bandyopadhyay
Manchester Metropolitan University

The work began at Liverpool University with the AHRC-supported study of modernity in Indian architecture focused on the 'otherness' of Nek Chand's Rock Garden in Chandigarh, the city planned by Le Corbusier as the post-independence capital of the state of Punjab.

Neck Chand Rock Garden
Nek Chand's Rock Garden, Chandigarh, India. Photo: Bandyopadhyay, 2007

Supported by a research studentship the project completed a detailed documentation of the Rock Garden. A short monograph, The Collection, the Ruin and the Theatre (Liverpool 2007) and a number of journal publications have now appeared and an extensive two-volume monograph is being planned (all with Dr Iain Jackson, Liverpool). This project has since been extended to address the work of Le Corbusier and contemporary Indian architects such as Charles Correa and Laurie Baker. Important publications have addressed ideas of the unfinished, spatial reciprocity and justice in Le Corbusier's work, while the latent role of technology in Laurie Baker's work is discussed with regards to the construction of a new Indian architectural identity in another (Routledge 2007 & in press).

 Neck Chand Rock Garden Neck Chand Rock Garden Neck Chand Rock Garden

Key areas of interest

  • Modernism and modernity since the early-19th century
  • Colonial architecture/minor colonial presences
  • India's post-Independence architecture.