Domus India 67 cover design
The cover is derived from one of the façades of the Virchow 16 building designed by RMA Architects for the Novartis campus in Basel, Switzerland. The image abstracts colour-light, transperancy, and depth of one of the skins of the building. The skins of this building are designed to respond to, as well as create a new context for this incremental campus, so each side of the building is designed with a different conceptual framework and architectural technique. The building develops an architecture of skin as ‘thick description’ where relationships of the inside and the outside, of work and street, of hierarchies and organisation are critically redrawn. The abstraction of this façade is a structuring of colour-bleeds — where form and structure are evident but depth and transperancy open up another dimension into the building — exploring the skin as a deep structure of architecture. The cover collage also borrows from Seher Shah’s ‘Capitol Complex’ series where she deploys the façades and architectonic elements of key buildings by Le Corbusier in Chandigarh and draws on a mix of the personal and historical, formulating new constellations from architectural geometries. From Corbusier and Chandigarh, to RMA Architects from Mumbai and their design of Virchow 16 in Basel, one notices a rich history of design and context debates, architects working across different locations, and the legacies of approaches to façade designs. The slight but striking reference to an artwork by Seher Shah is key for the way Corbusier’s façade is now replaced with an abstract colour field from the more contemporary building in Switzerland, by an architect from India.
This cover is an editorial extension of the cover of the last issue - October 2017 - which focussed on Modern Architecture and the collage of its structural, tectonic, and visual languages that emerge from a combination of the former two. Technical assistance with illustration: Swapnil Redkar