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Building On Vernacular Architecture - The Hindu

August 22, 2014, 6:30:00 PM

This article highlights the contemporary vernacular architecture in India. It is unfortunate that Indian architecture today hardly carries lessons from the wisdom integral to our village constructions, rues Dr Benny Kuriakose. “Building techniques in the innards of Indian rural communities are ready-made lessons in sustainability,” says the Chennai-based designer, when he spoke to Ranjani Govind from The Hindu-Habitat about vernacular architecture, recycled approaches, sustainability and green ratings.

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Sustainable development is all about avoiding wastage of materials to bring down costs, he says, preferring to call his buildings “no-waste buildings” rather than “cost-effective buildings.” “As the Austrian-American architect Bernard Rudofsky has said, vernacular architecture can be termed as architecture without architects. It is based on local climate, local materials and the prevailing culture” says Benny Kuriakose about vernacular architecture.

With a sagacity to garner in a mix of styles Benny’s basic Kerala background directs his vernacular approaches where need-based design and material hold the key. When asked his opinion on the green rating systems, he says, “I am not questioning the green rating but I want to say that they do not capture the richness, complexity or diversity of our architecture.”