On my Facebook feed, instagram and twitter, I read the unfortunate news
that the Hall of Nations has been brought down.
It is no difficult argument that it should not have been, or
that there are far ugliers, more ungainly and completely un-celebrate-able
buildings in Pragati Maidan (the Irony of the name does not pass me at the
moment!) that should have met this fate long before Hall of Nations perished to
So the question comes to mind -How? Or why?
As a young upstart of a practice, and a young architect trying
to make headway into the world of design it is formidable kind of future to
But I think the answer lies probably, not in architecture or
its value or how its value is perceived, but in the nature of discourse on
architecture in the country. Which even now is yet to come of any kind of age.
I happened to attend an event at IHC discussing the proposal
of National Museum of Architecture, a small group of architects and people from
Before long the discussion wound its way from architecture
to architects, and the value of keeping a repository of works of the who’s who.
And it suddenly became quite apparent how little discourse
there was, and if there was any it was more like Name-Dropping.
The discourse on Architecture is not the Discussion of
Architects. And the Value of Architecture is not in the name of the
Authorship. They are separate. The Architect may be important by a symbiotic relationship to the
Value of the Architecture, the reverse is painfully untrue.
But in that small realization I believe the discourse of
architecture may be carried out in earnest. The value of architecture is not the
name of the Architect who designed it. Its value is (and should always be)
quite clearly distinct.
Labels: Architects, architecture, design, discourse, hall of nations, indian modernism, modern architecture in india, modern india, national museum of architecture, pragati maidan, raj rewal