Introduce us to your design philosophy
Malini: ‘Saransh’ is the Hindi term for ‘summary’. At Saransh we believe that good design follows strong concepts, and concepts evolve as cohesive responses to multiple factors. Our design approach has two layers to it: firstly, understanding the requirements of the clients and devising a program that addresses them; and secondly, conceptualizing and detailing in line with those requirements.
Manish: We start every project with an open mind and no preconceived ideas. Our design philosophy explains it all – the client is supreme! He has to live with your design all his life, so our creativity has to address his needs first.
Which projects have had the most impact on you?
Malini: The most memorable projects of my architectural career have been the camps that I have designed in Kumbh Melas since 2004 (seven camps till 2019) for the spiritual organization. I start as the architect of the camp from design to execution and then become a volunteer and help with maintaining, managing and running the camp for the duration of the Mela.
Manish: The most memorable project for me was a competition we participated in at the beginning of our practice – it was a building for the Police Headquarters in Hyderabad, which we won but the project was shelved and never built!
Which has been the most challenging brief you have worked on?
Malini: There probably can’t be a more challenging brief than a Kumbh Mela Camp. This is a mini city to the tune of 3 lakh sq.ft. temporary construction across 22 acres of land to be executed in about 30 days!
Manish: A brief for a housing project in the initial years was always challenging. One had to deliver the commercials for the developer in terms of FSI and Vastu while bringing in your sense of design and aesthetics. This was not easy at all in the first few projects, till finally we mastered the balance.
This article was originally published in POOL 108.
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