An architect, educator, urban planner, and a Padma Shri awardee; As a person who is still widely regarded as one of the pioneers of modern architecture in India, Balkrishna Vithaldas Doshi was best known for his low-cost and culture-sensitive designs.
Born in Pune, he studied architecture in Mumbai before moving to Europe to work with the legendary architect Le Corbusier.
Doshi is best known for his contributions in:
One of Doshi’s most notable contributions was his work in low-cost housing. He recognized the need for affordable housing in India and worked to create design solutions that were both efficient and beautiful. To make the buildings cost-effective, he used:
Some of his most notable projects in this field include the Aranya Low-Cost Housing in Indore, which provided affordable housing for over 80,000 people, and the Balkrishna Doshi Housing, which demonstrated the potential for sustainable and affordable housing in urban areas.
B.V Doshi built several cultural and educational institutions which have both modern and cultural aspects incorporated in them. Doshi also designed many institutions, including the Indian Institute of Management in Bangalore and the School of Architecture. All these buildings reflect the principles he believed in.
Finally, Doshi’s advocacy for architecture that is sensitive to context, culture, and environment has had a lasting impact on the field of architecture. He challenged the notion that architecture should be a universal style imposed from the outside, and instead argued that architecture should respond to local conditions and traditions. His work continues to inspire architects and designers around the world, who seek to create architecture that is both beautiful and socially responsible.
Doshi was also a strong advocate for sustainable and environmentally conscious design. His buildings always followed a certain set of principles:
In addition to his architectural work, Doshi was also an important educator. He founded the School of Architecture in Ahmedabad, which became a center for architectural education and research in India. Through this school, he trained a generation of architects and helped to establish a strong tradition of architectural education in India.
Doshi wanted to bring back a deep understanding of traditional Indian architecture and its relationship to the natural environment. In fact, he was a pioneering architect who practiced a style of architecture that was modern, yet deeply rooted in local context and tradition.
Throughout his career, Doshi remained committed to architecture’s potential to improve the quality of life for people, and his legacy continues to inspire architects and designers around the world. Further, he founded the School of Architecture in Ahmedabad, which became a center for architectural education and research in India.
Doshi was mostly known for his low-cost housing and cultural projects.
Finally, Doshi’s own architecture office, Sangath, is a notable work in itself. It was designed as a flexible and collaborative space for architects, artists, and thinkers to come together and share ideas. The building reflects Doshi’s commitment to creating a supportive and creative environment for architectural practice.
In addition to his architectural work, Doshi was also an important urban planner. He was involved in the planning of several cities in India, including Chandigarh, the first planned city in India, where he worked with Le Corbusier. His work in urban planning demonstrated his commitment to creating livable and sustainable cities that respond to the needs of their residents.
Doshi practiced a style of architecture that was heavily influenced by the ideas of the Swiss-French architect Le Corbusier. This style, known as the International Style or Modern Architecture, was characterized by the use of concrete, steel, and glass to create functional, unadorned buildings that sought to break away from traditional architectural forms.
Some of his principles are:
BV Doshi’s impact on the field of architecture was profound and far-reaching. He was a pioneer of modern architecture in India, a champion of sustainable design, and most importantly, an educator. His legacy continues to inspire architects and designers around the world.