Founded by Sanjay Puri in 1992, Sanjay Puri architects is an architectural firm based in South Bombay and is one of the most sought-after architecture and design firms in India. With a team of 72, the firm is a powerhouse for its extensive design portfolio consisting of architecture as well as interior design projects categorized into residential, commercial, retail, hospitality, entertainment, educational and urban projects including town planning.
As quoted by Ar. Sanjay Puri himself: “Evolving a dialogue of spaces that transcend the ordinary in the way they are perceived while resolving the functional aspects in a more conducive way than ways explored earlier and simultaneously forming volumes sculpturally is innovation within the architectural sense.”
Exploring into the studio of Ar. Sanjay Puri, we come across a three-level structure located in South Bombay’s Mahalaxmi area. A 40-year old factory shed was converted into an architectural studio along with retaining the original pitched roof of the factory. To provide ample light into the internal spaces, the external walls having small windows were abandoned to inculcate floor-to-ceiling glass windows overlooking the trees. A natural palette lights up the interior space encompassing the exposed brick wall, polished concrete floors, cement boards, and raw sound insulation boards. The elements of color and graphics break the monotonous feeling of the material palette.
The ground floor incorporates sunken seating made of concrete in the reception area. The first-floor ceiling has been designed with corrugated sheets that support the suspended wooden trays at different heights along with angular exposed air conditioning ducts. The work areas have been designed with the concept of an open plan along with large multifunctional discussion tables that double as storage space.
Graduating from the Academy of Architecture, Mumbai in 1988, Sanjay Puri worked with Ar. Hafeez Contractor throughout his education for 5 years from 1983 to 1988 and continued to work there as a Senior Associate for 4 years. After the establishment of his firm in 1992, Sanjay Puri has designed several structures until now. His belief that every project should be contextually designed by perceiving it in a way such that the spaces are evolving simultaneously. Cohesively, each of the designs should be cognizant of the climate and integrate sustainability as part of creating a revolutionary experience.
During his work with Hafeez Contractor, Sanjay Puri was approached by a client, Ashwin Sheth, about a small-scale architectural project. During one of the visits, Sanjay Puri was asked to accord his opinion on one of the client’s projects in requisition to a layout of 54 acres. Instead of an opinion, Sanjay Puri sat with the client for hours and re-sketched the entire layout by creating a hierarchy of spaces along with creating large garden areas in the layout as opposed to the original one that was approved. This eventually became his first independent project based on which he established his firm later in Mumbai.
Looking into the design process of Sanjay Puri, he expresses his philosophy that involves the acclimatization of data pertaining to the site as well as the client’s requirements along with the deliberation of users. The design encompassing all the cohesive aspects evolves the spaces into an exploratory area focusing on function and sustainability. The initial stage involves sketching the design followed by a physical model to comprehend the various aspects and finally transforming the model into construction drawings.
Completed in 2013, this 6-level office building appears as an integrated facade made of perforated screens to look like a jali. The glass integrated concrete screens essentially render the building energy efficient. The jali screens envelop the structure on all sides reducing the heat gain and forcing air through small openings, cooling air, and simultaneously increasing the force marginally.
The structure is fragmented into triangular facets with the jali screens as a secondary feature in response to the hot climate of Rajasthan that also incorporates the traditional architecture of the region.
The fluid-structure rising on a 1,300 square meter plot is a mixed-use building catering to office spaces on one half, and visual and performing arts displays along with creative studio space on the other. The seamless transition between the horizontal and vertical circulation occurs fluidly through the undulating form through an occupiable sculpture.
The four-story building occupies the art society’s administrative offices with a separate entrance leading up to this area thus physically separating the two functional zones. The two programmatic spaces are materially united by the gentle curving tectonics, contrary to the subtle openings below, and the upper volume punctured with a large glass façade that is angled to frame the views of the sea.
As architecture is the only art form that influences both physical and emotional aspects, designing a space that is constantly evolving and changing perceptions based on demands, explores new possibilities of space dynamics. Ar. Sanjay Puri is of the opinion that each project teaches us something new and helps us discover the nuances of space that are exciting and allows reaching creative freedom.
- Sanjay Puri Architects [Online] Available at: www.sanjaypuriarchitects.com
- MSG Architecture [Online] Available at: www.msgarchitecture.in
- Beautiful homes with asian paints [Online] Available at: https://www.beautifulhomes.com/living/studios/in-the-studio-of-sanjay-puri-architects.html