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Raheja mindspace hyderabad cognizant dissonance elemica ceo of yahoo

Raheja mindspace hyderabad cognizant dissonance

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Since its inception in , the office has received many critical acclaims and their work has been published in respected journals in India and abroad. Afflicted with bureaucratic hurdles and unsettling realities, the condition of living heritage in the country is grave. Inheriting a rich legacy of architectural heritage, Mumbai was among the pioneering cities to ac uire heritage legislation in India. More than two and a half decades on, inadvertent conservation practices have defamed an illustrious past and endangered the built heritage.

The recently restored t ohn the aptist hurch in Thane presents a uni ue case in the holistic conservation of a cultural heritage. Above Left Originally paved Minton-tile ooring from and the new ooring as seen in the central part of the nave Above Right areful removal of ota stone ooring from the nave without damage to tombstones The Minton-tile oor was recreated by using a combination of Jaisalmer stone, black marble and Andhra red stone Below: A detailed documentation of existing historic tombstones in the nave.

While grappling with multi-layered and constantly evolving meanings, often, the process of restoration and conservation of socio-cultural spaces re uires critical imagination and an ade uate historic preface.

The firm has successfully worked on varied range of pro ects from historic homes, palaces, residential buildings, educational buildings, hostels, churches, dharamshalas, museums, banks, fountains and hospitals. Several of their projects have received national as well as international recognition.

This project was executed with active participation from the then arish riest, Bishop Allwyn Silva, the arish ommittee of St ohn the Baptist Church and the Church Finance Committee. Studio Lotus has emerged as one of the most versatile design practices from India in the past decade. With many acclaimed works in their portfolio, the practice has led the narrative of a multi-disciplinary approach towards architecture and design in our context.

This piece is an attempt to decipher the fundamental ideas that form the underlay for the endeavours of Studio Lotus and the purpose behind the width and depth of their practice. Studio Lotus has established itself as a versatile, energetic and ever-innovating spatial design practice in the Indian landscape. With projects that involve professional work in the disciplines of Architecture, Interior Design, Exhibition Design, Furniture Design and Graphic Design, Studio Lotus has often found themselves working in the interfaces between many demanding design questions.

These questions are fundamental to design practice in India and its subcontinent. They relate to our landscape, the ethics of practice in the Global South and the themes that guide design engagement in our context. This single word encompasses the many complex layers of interaction that the studio engages with.

From a detailed understanding of the programme — much of what is re-written by the studio — to an intuitive grasp of the materials at hand, the architectural framework and the systems that need to be employed in each project. In this respect, each project is unique and an independent discussion for the studio. While a collective portfolio enables one to glimpse into the continuous threads of ideas that run through their work, each project is prompted into its own trajectory that continually references back to the Studio Lotus framework.

Sustainability is a consistent theme. But a deeper understanding of sustainability and its interface with the process of design and production is where the interest of Studio Lotus is located.

This is a welcome deviation from the statistic-oriented idea of sustainability that banks heavily on the concept of reduction rather than economy. For Studio Lotus, the core aspects of sustainable design work in proximity with their concerns on the cultural, social and environmental impact of design.

This distinct definition of craft deals with the idea of making and the potential of artisanship in India. The office works closely and in collaboration with craftsmen, skilled labour and artisans on their project sites, often co-creating experiments in material research and construction processes to innovate at the grassroots.

The process of experiment and feedback includes prototyping, scale-modelling and creating mock-ups that enables the designers to grasp the impact of detail at the human scale. In many of their projects of varying scales, Studio Lotus has been known to have invested in training people on the site.

By contributing in development of their skill, the practice Above - Left and Right: The making and installation of screens at Raas, Jodhpur Below - Left and Right: Innovating with the artisans on the site. In a conversation with the founders and designers of the Studio Lotus team,. At the office, many designers and enablers who collaborate are pushed to think of their work as a craft. All perspectives count. Much of the exhaustive work that the studio does involves a conscious evaluation of their contribution to the society at large.

This exchange is a long-term conversation. The critical interface that the designers have with the larger network includes clients, contractors, construction labourers, managers, consultants and so on, enables them to contribute to a conversation that is more holistic and that impacts the society.

The process consistently seeks a feedback from these externalities. This feedback prompts them to reference their work consistently within their context. This expectation is not limited. This common commitment is demanded from everyone who wishes to engage. In many ways, the purpose of work at Studio Lotus can be analysed to have an internal and an external impact. The context of their practice is very significant for them — India is a constant conversation at the office, and there is a genuine attempt to source and respond to critical regional parameters of their project sites.

It is not just the physical context of their work that is important — also the intellectual context of their effort. While prototyping, they seek to engage with sophisticated digital modelling. On site, they are in constant negotiation for an emphasis on uality. This dual nature of practice — one that looks inward while looking outward — generates a positive feedback loop. A constant cycle of action and reflection which perhaps enables many individuals who engage with the work of tudio Lotus to seek their purpose in the practice.

Previous Page: Under construction photograph of the Krushi Bhavan the brick becomes the facade. The daily grind at the studio involves producing surplus ideas. Exhaustive iterations, revisions, re-imagined. This shared sense of ownership also develops from a code of conduct that is at the foundation of this practice. Ambrish, idhartha and Ankur independently talk about the significance they associate to framing a culture of work that informs all their decisions and in turn, would inform the decisions of everyone who works at the studio.

The questions of design, entrepreneurship, ambition and quality of life is referenced against this important primary layer of values that they have subscribed to in their leadership roles.

The process of design at the practice is both structured and sporadic, often swinging between rational decision-making and impulses of innovation. Studio Lotus is conscious of the fact that their practice is located in India — a landscape of human wealth and desperate human questions that one is regularly confronted with.

The ability of the practice to engage with the more visceral layers of human endeavour without preconceptions or judgement renders their efforts in engaging with India more pragmatic and immediate. They view issues with great proximity. India, for them, is a philosophy. The concerns of tudio otus are uite distinct from the preoccupations of contemporary architecture and design disciplines. While the core competences of a mainstream practice that constantly seeks to innovate are a source of the many noteworthy projects they have executed, they are often reluctant to claim complete authorship of their works; attributing it equally to the craftsmen, masons, consultants, clients, contractors and the many individuals involved.

The collective spirit of practice overrides the individual genius with an emphasis on work as a learning process for all.

When one attempts to analyse the foundational layers of the practice, one finds that it is built on human relationships and exchange. The idea of shared authorship of all work is central to practice. It needs to be constantly honed. STUDIO LOTUS is a multi-disciplinary design practice whose work seamlessly weaves together interior and exterior spaces, from large architectural ideas to small-scale furniture details.

Being a collective of individuals from diverse backgrounds, their practice is informed by many creative perspectives and domains of work. They work with people at the core of the making in building trade and improvise on their processes.

Their work has a strong affinity towards the phenomenon experience of spaces. Led by making, their designs are driven by identifying and encouraging potential in existing building practices and techniques. For Studio Lotus, technology is a medium to orchestrate experiences that are uni ue, specific and purposeful.

STUDIO attempts to document the intellectual position and philosophical narrative of an Indian practice with a critical and consequential portfolio. The process of designing is often a combination of the tacit and the explicit.

In deconstructing the intent behind a piece of good design, one can indulge in articulating the explicit but the tacit and the experiential aspects of architecture develop from a process that is sporadic, intuitive and non-linear. The Folly House is a collection of complex, curious objects that occupy an otherwise gallery-like indoor space.

While the former is designed as a continuous, undulating object that assumes multiple roles as one engages in activities around the same, the latter is a box that un-boxes itself to reveal functional voids and surfaces. The two are connected by the activity of watching television. Depending on the side it is oriented towards, The Living Room Folly assumes a role of a group seat, a divan, a couch and a horseback with its underside behaving as a cave where the kids in the family will discover a personal map of the world.

As a strategy, The Busride Design Studio has designed these objects for most critical functions of the house — a table that rotates, a labyrinth that serves as a space for children and a Tangram graphic that rearranges itself into a house as one walks past it. The making of these objects lean on complex details. The Living Room Folly that addresses six independent functionalities in the room uses a parametric software to generate its organic structure, and is eventually const uct d as a a.

Sophisticated workmanship and detail are critical hidden layers in the making of these pieces. Whimsy often needs great pragmatism in the background. While the core living spaces revolve around two Follies many similar objects in quasi-architectural scale are designed as composite aggregators of functions.

These pieces transform and are transformed with the activity within and around them. This approach creates compact local densities of functional points and enables The usride esign tudio to liberate space in the house. Once the use is fulfilled, the objects retreat within their compact original forms waiting to be engaged with again. The design process of The Folly House is atypical. The designers lean on the accessibility, intractability and ambiguity of these Follies to generate both — objective use and delight.

The open-plan is designed to be a neutral plane. The drawings and diagrams suggest two independent thought processes of association and dissociation as the Follies work within and independent of the plan. As an idea, the creation of an amorphous and fluid volume is also a significant one. This formless space enables the objects to express their individual personality — almost as if they are dynamic sculptures in a gallery space. This space employs more tactile surfaces led by permutations of materials and lighting and complements the objects it hosts.

The process of design places the people who are to use the house in the centre of the environment — a place that is activated by their presence. T E BUSRI E ESI N STU IO is an independent design firm specialising in the design and creation of built environments, ranging from hospitality and entertainment venues, to film and production environments, and from exhibitions and temporary installations, to institutional environments.

Led by Ayaz Basrai and ameer Basrai, the office is a team of Architects, Interior Designers, Graphic Designers, Exhibition Designers and Industrial Designers, who work in a multi-disciplinary design environment across micro to macro scales ranging from crafting small products to urban design.

The firm is known to have designed and executed many projects of critical acclaim. Apart from design, the studio is involved in social initiatives like The Bandra Project, pedagogy and research. They work from Mumbai and Goa. Batliboi Consultants, we discuss exhibition design as a discipline and an area of his creative endeavour, drawing from his exhaustive portfolio in design of an array of temporary and permeant exhibitions and his insight into the processes that work on the front and back-end of the experience.

Tell us about your interest in designing exhibitions. How did you get initiated in this discipline? Through college, I used to work on technical aspects of fashion shows for my aunt.

I was always interested in the backstage-frontstage stuff and exhibitions just fell in our lap. I was once speaking with Maitreya Doshi and his father Vinod Doshi of Premier Automobiles about doing a show in a factory and they were participating in an auto expo. Thus, the idea of the exposition space as an exhibition emerged. This first exhibition that we designed was 25, square feet display in the good old Hall of Nations at Pragati Maidan.

It was great fun and since, we started designing for this expo every two years. We used to work on exhibitions, November through January. In parallel, I used to practice architecture and interior design taking on as many commissions we could, that included film sets, fashion shows and sets for advertisement films. We did an exhaustive lot of work and that is how it all started! What are the fundamentals for understanding and designing an exhibition?

This process was quite exciting as these relationships and ideas were strongly spatial — our exhibitions were three dimensional and they were not about plastering graphics on the walls. The space was more sculpted and we designd in a way that people went under, over and around the space. The core idea and the point of departure would come from the nature of content and user of the exhibition space.

My exhibition team has always been non-standard. I would bring in anybody who I felt would be exciting to bring on board. Over time, we nurtured a team of professional contractors who had a diversity of skills and execution acumen.

In the other kind of exhibition — the one in which you have to deal with curators of art and intellectual content, what is the process of design like? A historical background and a curatorial inclination is very important in such commissions.

The whole structure was created around the idea of bringing art to the masses through a popular subject and an iconic sportsman. Veerangana had curated the exhibition very carefully and it was not just about pictorialising Sachin and decorating him in media. Rather, it was about stories of his life, the ways he was reading into things, his innings and his extreme passion for the game. We took up the whole. So, where the curator brings in content in a purist understanding, the curator is also critical to establish a flow that is desired the grouping and sometimes, the oning.

It is a great experience working with a sharp curator. Sometimes, curators get carried away and give you seventy two pages that you have to condense into three lines which you probably have to title into four words. So that really tough editorial skill some curators have and some do not.

Working with curators can also be as painful as it can be exciting since curators have their own way of looking at things. How involved are you, as a designer, in the curatorial conversation? I like to get extremely involved in the conversation, because unless we understand the subject-matter thoroughly, we are not going to be good at what we do. We have subject-matter specialists for the same.

Everyone else is an expert. While my broad understanding is important, my team would be completely immersed in the content of the exhibition. They are the ones who get into conflict with the curators as a personal point-of-view is established. I think it is critical to understand how a detail is communicated. An exhibition is only about communication.

It is the elevator test situation where you have to communicate the entire concept of what you want to say in probably a one minute walkthrough or a five-minute duration and it should be good enough to last you for four hours if necessary. There is also a great distinction between temporary and permenant exhibitions. What is the value of human engagement in your exhibitions? Are you always imagining how people would react to the things you design?

We are always looking at the exhibition from multiple points of view to primarily understand the way the visitor would look at it. We have a method of presenting the curator or the client the exhibition from the human perspective and they see their project in a completely different light. We are conscious of the engagement of walking through the exhibition and its directionality.

Sometimes, exhibitions are very directional and sequential. Sometimes, they are simultaneously experiential and sometimes they are multidirectional.

For example, in the Indian Art Exhibition, the sculpture punctuates the pieces of art. There is no real order unless it is a chronology or a monograph of the artist or something like that.

The human is very critical to the exhibition space and you reali e that you have a narrow space — from two and a half feet from the ground till about eight feet — to engage at that level. Everything else is experienced in scale — an installation or a large graphic panel. It is important to also consciously see how crowds are managed because crowds are very critical and we do not design exhibitions for the opening night.

We design them for the trickle of viewers that progressively visit. Handling people is also important. There is a classic Indian mentality of touching things or wanting to touch things and wanting to go close to smell. The demographic profile is also critical. If I have to design an exhibition for children, everything changes again. As designers, we have to be continuously conscious about this.

How different are your exhibitions today as compared to when you had started? We started with simple formats. We never did plaster graphics on the wall. I was more interested in sculpting space. Today, we use a lot more technology: animatronics, holographic projections, screens, multiple projections, video-mapping and many other things that make the interface.

It is a combination of the dark box and lighting, wherein we work on the content and experience with all kinds of technology. Today, the exhibition experience leans on technology and much less on space.

While earlier, exhibitions used to be about space, today, space has become expensive so there is a premium to the experience in that space. We do not have the same luxury of space any more as compared to where we started.

The twenty to thirty thousand square-feet that we used to work on earlier is not compressed in social media. So the content is compressed from this twenty thousand square-feet to the small screen but there is joy in exhibition. While the exhibitions of the past focused on experience, today, we have exhibitions which hinge on interaction.

We also have to be conscious about the conversations that happen around the exhibition space — the discourse! What about lighting? Luckily for me, I had worked with the stage for a long time doing theatrical lighting so lighting is built in my mind-space. Exhibitions tend to be abusive of lighting. The lux levels bleed and wash out everything! So, the multi-stall exhibits are a challenge.

But when one is working on a museum or an art-space, or even an exhibition that deals with objects, you have a huge amount of flexibility to work with the best lights possible. We tend to design our own lighting and not rely on the lighting provided by the space.

When we light permenant exhibitions, historic and sculptural pieces of art, we are concerned about the. In the old days, one had to work with reflectors and they bleed light all over the place but now, you can use very tight optics with very focused beams and interesting light qualities. One can work with colour temperatures as some objects are comprehended in yellow light while some are better in white light.

Do materials inform exhibition design? What kinds of materials are you used to working with? Contemporary exhibitions have large budgets — almost comparable to a permenant space. But because most exhibitions have a limited life, one can be more experimental with materials. Since the longevity is not a discussion, we use a very wide palette — aluminium, plastics, thermocol, fabrics, metallic foils and polyesters. It is very exciting and intriguing to study the behaviour of these materials, their compatibility and as a designer, one can cut, fold, bend, mould, blow, and so on.

Most manufacturers give us material to fool around with, before we use it at scale and in mainstream exhibitions. How do you keep up with the pace of change? We do not take too many exhibitions now because it is hugely trying.

I have become very selective about what we take on as exhibition design now. It is very critical to stay in touch with what is happening on a daily basis.

When I see the books we used to refer to in the 80s and the 90s, I wonder why we ever did anything like that! Technology has changed and the designers are experimenting substantially.

One can get dated very fast in this field of work. The constant process of designing and referencing gives a lot of creative freedom to my team — the team is allowed to fly and there is no restriction. The bottom line is that the design has to be buildable. When we talk about exhibitions, we are talking across everything — from temporary to permenant and from white-box to black-box. Some exhibitions are static and some have dynamic technological input.

One also has to account for people moving in the exhibitions against people sitting and observing. We are extremely focussed about typography and legibility. We consider the distance of viewing and the priority of message. I have my favourite fonts as well. Our graphic schemes are reactive to the content of the exhibition.

Colour sensitivity is also very critical because sometimes, one can go overboard with it. Colour plays an important part in establishing the mood of the viewer. We also often work in several languages so it becomes very critical for us to compose these languages across exhibits.

You have expressed that many have learnt and trained in the process. What is your engagement with the people who work on the execution end? The interesting part of our studio is that we also do interior design and architecture and these domains develop other kinds of skills that one brings to exhibition design. In most cases, the exhibition designers are refined film-set creators.

Film sets have this crude back-end that exhibitions cannot have. Our execution team is much more refined as they have been traditionally trained on architecture and interior design projects. The people who used to work with us initially have all developed their own large businesses while some have specialised and stayed with film-set studios. To conclude, tell us a bit about the process and your engagement in the process of design. While you have limited your exhibition design work now, do new projects still excite you?

In my position, I usually get the brief from the client. I will interpret the brief primarily because we have an experience of dealing with the people who are trying to articulate themselves. Sometimes, clients come with open-ended briefs while sometimes one is dealing with a product manager who thinks he knows exactly what he wants to do and how he wants to do it.

The creative licence is a bit curbed but none of that scares me as we now know how to deal with both the conditions. I would take the brief and if I have a core idea and if I knew exactly how I wanted it, I would put it down on paper. I am the only one who uses pen and paper in this office so I sit with a bunch of tracing sheets on my table and three pens in different inks to sketch out my thoughts. I think graphically, in monochrome and in form with a hope that my colleagues can grasp what I am trying to say from my drawings.

There are specialists in the team and thus, it becomes important not to step on their toes. Sometimes a fresh sculpted idea will come from a graphic designer and sometimes an architect will substantially contribute to the graphic uality of the project. My teams are fluid in their composition. Answering the second part of the question, I think exhibitions are a great medium. Today, we are taking exhibitions into the domain of experience design. Every shop and every restaurant is centered around the experience.

I would love to bring in other sensory experiences into the space. We normally see and smell but the temperature of the space, the texture, the heat, the slopes that give you a sense of unease are all essential ingredients.

We have also become very dependent on technology. I like technology to be at the back-end of the experience. It makes huge sense there. We also seek feedback from the visitors.

To do. Often, designers tend to let design overtake content. I keep looking at design as packaging of content and one cannot let packaging to take over.

The design is sometimes much understated. Batliboi - onsultants vt Ltd - a three-decade multidisciplinary design practice.

The firm has a significant and critical portfolio of Architecture, Urban esign and lanning, Interior esign, Retail esign and Exhibition esign. The office produces work of high uality and standard with a belief in an integrated and interdisciplinary approach to design.

Immersed in contemporary ideas on design, Ratan J. Batliboi Architects has stayed away from a signature style responding to each pro ect and its uni ue framework in its specific context.

Their contemporary aesthetic is derived from the intrinsic quality of materials they work with and the nature of this specific process. Versioning also adds to the incredible variety that is generated from a singular potent idea. In a discussion on the. Venturing into a more immediate and relevant domain of institutional furniture, Industrial Playground is also enabled by a fresh demand, the changing ideas about office and study culture and a shift in user behaviour in recent years.

The nature of the design process is important for the kind of work ASDS in interested in. This process is non-linear and does not originate from the visual attributes of the eventual product. After graduating from NID, Ajay Shah worked as a furniture designer, producer and retailer through Exemplar Systems rivate Limited before starting an independent firm in by the title ircus esign ompany. AS S has since been a studio undergoing transitions every few months by seeking to practise design more widely.

Refusing to stay grounded to one discipline or one type of client. In , Industrial Playground products were merged into Rubberband as an umbrella brand. By centering the process of design within the concerns of material integrity, detail and functionality, the design practice at ASDS is deeply involved in creating a contemporary aesthetic without subscribing to stylistic and visual overtones.

Today, the studio continues to work on select commissioned projects and Rubberband design developments from their Mumbai studio. Assessing the impact of ephemeral spaces in unconventional sites is the work of Kolkata-based Abin Design Studio and The Hashtag Collective. Man has always been a compulsive storyteller narrating in a language of cultural creations.

At various stages of our civilisation, artefacts have been found that bind time, space and ritual. In context of the prevailing culture, buildings inadvertently have a malleable existence in our psyche. In the many folds of architecture, there exists the idea of impermanence of the world which is distinctly known for its physical departure from the site.

Subliminally spaces which possess an innate presence of materiality, semantics, context and order inhabit temporal structures erected to facilitate a communal purpose. Under the pretext of ephemerality, their experiential quality imbeds the connotation of space perceived. Within this premise, each of them is foremost conceived with concurrence of time, place, and occasion.

Assembled with the help of an enthusiatic community, it showcases a staggering locally-sourced bamboo poles meticulously painted in festive colours. Spiralling towards a focal idol, the Pavilion is conceptualised as a circular volume with a choreographed movement that entails the journey through a vibrant confetti by day and a glowing mirage by night. Borrowing elements from its setting, the installation lucidly suggests s l su fici ncy in th hi h st o.

Abin haudhuri in collaboration with contemporaries in the field of arts and architecture as part of The Hashtag Collective positions su.

With a clear narrative stringed together with a contextual underpinning, the ephemerality in these spaces endeavours to provide the society with a frame of reference for their current existence and an explanation of the world in which they find themselves occupying. Facing Page Above: The installation as seen in its context in an exterior courtyard at Mattancherry, ochi Facing Page Below: The installation held together with criss-crossing of hinese or heenavala fishing ropes Above An assembly of hand-made alloy mirrors called Aranmula Kannadi.

Since then, A S has executed a range of diverse pro ects that has engaged with multiple issues, and of varying scales, from interior design and architecture to urban design and art.

Their work encompasses pro ects of varying scales ranging from institutional and urban pro ects to private residences and installations. A conscious effort to explore the unknown ourney, experimentation with materials and technology, and the engaging of art and culture has been the approach for realising each pro ect from inception to execution. Based out of hennai and olkata, the collaborators have strong creative practices and have worked on permanent and temporary art works in the past, ranging from installations at hennai s Marina Beach in Tamil Nadu to ort ochi in erala.

Every once in a while, one entertains an idea of a peculiar venture; the grounds of which tend to be less pragmatic and more whimsical. While these ideas end before they take off, Nitin and Disney fostered their fascination with materials into a unique endeavour which celebrates craftsmanship.

The practice, located in the interface between architecture and sculpture, conceives work that is idea-led and process-driven. Handcrafted products that are one-of-a-kind: the artefacts produced by the studio can be labelled as collectables. There is an aspirational. The assortment consisting of robust concrete handles , is. The collection of lamps and furniture takes inspiration from earthy elements like flowers and mushrooms, revealing the natural colour and texture of paper pulp.

Being able to produce good design all the while working within the constraints is a critical ingredient of practising design. Over a period of time, the venture has developed products that are beginning to have a functional aspect to their personality.

Yet, at the core of the work of Material Immaterial, there is a consistent desire to create non-objective things — things that have their own distinct identity that is disconnected from the limits of use. At the heart of it, the practice is driven by the elegance in simplicity - of both form and material. The designs hold a refreshing candour in crisp lines and bare colours. The absence of any additional layer of finish on the products extends the purist idea to the whole.

The process of design is rigorous and at the core of this design approach, there is a reluctance to subscribe to the confines of the eventual utility of the products.

The joy of the design process is evident in its many manifestations. It is built on the basic principles of bare beauty of materials, exploration of form of reduction and experimentation with techniques of creating. Beyond Material Immaterial Studio, Nitin and Disney also head The hite Room a Mumbai-based architecture firm with a passion for exploring innovative ways of approaching fundamental problems of space, proportion, light and materials.

Although the interior space makes the experience of architecture at the scale of the human experience palpable, it is the phenomena of colour, sound, tactility and light that bestows character and authenticity to a space and connects it to an imagery that is reminiscent of a cultural nostalgia.

In many creative processes that involve making, both the artist and the craftsman are directly engaged with the existential experiences of space through materiality. Natural materials possess an innate richness which enables a user to discover atmospheric characteristics of a space, a place and a setting before any conscious observations of details are made. It is in the subconscious haptic imagery of these spaces that one gathers lasting lived experiences. Originally brought to India by ortuguese and Italians tradesmen, it first prompted an exploration of self-created and customised floors in erala and later, across.

With oxides, the presence of the human touch is constant - from start of the mix to the finish of the floor and thereafter. The oxide laying process is nuanced with innate. Inspired by the wisdom in honed skill, the work of DUSTUDIO aims to create a strong link between past, present and future of building traditions in Indian context, using existing traditional knowledge as well as innovating within the framework of its social relevance, economic viability, environmental impact and culturally-rooted aesthetics.

What according to you, frames an Interior Design Practice in the Indian context? What aspects of an interior design practice are fundamental to the discipline?

An interior design practice when placed in the Indian context gets tied to not just our culture and aesthetics but more importantly, to how it is practised. In India, interior design has not been separated from architecture as a result of poor or no legislative or licensing control. It has, therefore, become a profession that architects adopt to create liquidity more often than not - an intermediary ball to keep rolling between architecture projects. In its minuscule understanding but more commonly seen, interior design is taken up as a part-time occupation and not a business.

On the other hand, it becomes a part of a complete design package in fields headed by contractors, engineering firms or furniture manufacturers. Thus in the Indian context, the percentage of hard-core interior design practices is relatively small. Hence, their role to take key decisions is more valuable.

It could mean becoming a member or getting your company registered. Amazon, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn are all fables.

Many of them had nursed silent ambitions of doing their own thing some day. As the entrepreneurial folklore started spreading to the world including India, Indians gathered their strength and decided to take the plunge. The last five years has seen the rise of the Indian Start-up. Powered by digital tools and armed with the mental strength to drive for success and accept failure, the Indian Entrepreneur has been reborn. But as one reads up stories of many successes, one cannot help wondering on where have the women gone.

Does entrepreneurship have anything to do with gender or is it just coincidence that there are not enough women dreamers? Multiple studies are revealing that the start-up ecosystem is not nurturing as many women as men.

Fortunately, things are changing for the better. The past couple of years has seen many women founders start-up and succeed. It is time that women, with ideas and gumption, seize the opportunity and make entrepreneurship the great gender leveller.

With all the stars aligning in their favour, this is the right time for women to Stand Up and Start Up India. In a world that is changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks.

Armed with technology and dreams, India is celebrating entrepreneurship. But low participation of women makes one wonder if societal gender biases are moving over to the realm of entrepreneurship? Any omission is unintentional. For any queries or issues, please contact on info womanatwork.

All efforts have been made to ensure accuracy of information in the magazine. Google plans to roll out the facility to stations by the end of and to stations eventually. Kindle Oasis is the company's eighth device in the series, with a charger that is built into its cover. Amazon claims Kindle Oasis is its thinnest and lightest-ever model.

Huawei has launched its first smartwatch in India The Huawei watch features a 1. The device sports a scratchproof sapphire crystal lens and has cold-forged stainless steel frame. It comes equipped with a built in heart rate monitor and IP67 rating which makes the smartwatch water resistant. Source: google. The motorcycle can be quickly converted into a cruiser by removing the quick-release windshield and panniers.

The key question is how to build this authenticity and what tool can come handy when you are trying to begin or improve relationships? Small talk is an important people skill.

It is an easy way to get to know someone, create a positive first impression, and gain selfconfidence. Knowing the art of small talk is an essential part of interpersonal communications protocol.

The dictionary defines small talk as light conversation about common, everyday things or chit chat. In business, small talk is social talking on a business level. Small talk is an important conversation about seemingly unimportant topics.

It is used at cocktail parties, meals, networking events, as pre-meeting activities and more. Small talk is designed to give people a chance to network, creating a bridge to conversations about opportunities.

When aiming to network, small talk puts people at ease, draws them into a conversation, and creates a comfort zone so that you can build a relationship with them. If you generally wait for someone else to take the initiative in a conversation, you are being self- centered. The first step in becoming a great conversationalist is becoming invested in the conversation and actively working to help the other person feel comfortable.

Remember the purpose of small talk is to build relationships. It is not a time for arguing or disagreement. Small talk is inclusive, as it often occurs in groups of 2 or more. Discussing a topic, that is so specific that a casual spectator cannot take part in it, is not polite. The art of small talk is learning to speak so that all observers feel included. Another main component of small talk includes listening. Small talk does not mean rambling on and monopolizing the conversation and not allowing others to speak.

Listening, is often more of the conversation than speaking. It can be a good way to learn the art of small talk, as well as being a part of it. You will gain stature, respect and rapport if you can get the conversation going. Almost always, people will embrace your efforts and appreciate your leadership and friendship.

It was a golden opportunity to chat up with MJ Shubhra, one of the most popular Radio Jockeys in the country. She was one of the earliest radio jockeys when the FM boom hit India and has not looked back since. The chirpy and exuberant voice that Pune can recognize with their eyes closed hides the grit, passion and determination that is behind the voice. No one could have imagined that the girl who hardly spoke, would one day, become the voice that would touch a million lives.

Youngest of three siblings and the daughter of an Air Force officer father and teacher mother, no one outside the family could have claimed to have heard Shubhra's voice when she was a little girl. She was known for her docility and shyness. She was the 'quiet' one of the house. A good student, who was obsessed with cleanliness and order, Shubhra was a dreamer.

She could never keep her attention at a singular place and that cost her dearly in her academics in later years. After her graduation, she landed up in a Bachelor's of Education course purely by chance. It was there she discovered her passion for teaching. She realised that being a teacher was her calling and she was a 'born' educator.

She enjoyed her time with young children and had a way to connect with them. If she could not connect with a child for some reason, it would continue to nag her much later. Her marriage to an Army officer meant packing backs every now and then. She would move cities and take up teaching jobs for the duration she stayed there. But what made her uncomfortable was that she had to start all over again and prove herself before she could have her opinion counted.

After eleven years of teaching in various locations, she decided to quit and become a stay-at-home mother to take care of her second daughter. In the year , she moved with her husband and family to Chandigarh. While she had consciously decided to opt out to take care of her girls, she was not happy within. As a home maker and an army wife, the lack of identity was getting to her.

It was at that time that she chanced upon an advertisement that was calling people for a career in the voiceover industry. It was also the year that FM radio was making an entry into India.

Shubhra had received a lot of appreciation for her voice and neutral accent. So when she saw the advertisement, she decided to go for it. It was her first tryst with the voice-over industry and little did she know that this would be the turning point of her life and professional journey. She started receiving a lot of calls from studios in Chandigarh for voice-overs and she was enjoying this world. Just as she was warming up to this new profession, her husband got his transfer orders to Pune.

Within a year, she moved bag and baggage to Pune. But now that she had got a taste of the voice-over world, she wanted to see if Pune offered these options. On a routine trip to a popular coffee house in Pune, she asked one of the hotel staff if they knew anybody who was associated with studios. As luck would have it, one such person was at the restaurant at that time.

That was just the stepping stone she needed. Meanwhile, the FM boom had reached Pune. She applied to a Radio Mirchi advertisement that was calling for radio jockeys and went for the audition. Shubhra credits all her moves to pure luck. He makes things happen for me. Twists and turns were a part of Shubhra's career. In her new world of radio and voice-overs, Shubhra somewhere missed her 'first love' - teaching.

When she heard that the Delhi Public School was opening a franchise in Pune, she was tempted to apply. Her talent and luck helped her once again and she was back to teaching tiny tots. But having carved a niche' for herself in the radio world, she was being missed by many. The national programming head of Radio Mirchi called her one day and urged her to come back.

Meanwhile her husband got posted to Kolkata. She then decided to take charge of her career and stay back in Pune and opted to join Radio Mirchi again.

One day, she got a call from an old friend who was with another leading radio station Radio One, and wanted her to join her team. Shubhra had learnt a lot about radio from Radio Mirchi and decided it was time to move on for diversity of experiences.

She decided to join Radio One as Executive Producer. Initially she used to do scriptwriting, voice-overs and program management. She slowly moved back to being on air. She now had her fingers in virtually every pie at the radio station and was enjoying it.

She was then offered the role of Head-Programming, which she took on, inspite of her reluctance and resistance. She considers herself more of a doer than a creator and was not sure if she could do justice to the role. But today, she has created a space for herself in the media world. Her talent and passion have enabled Shubhra be the voice that the listeners connect with instantly.

A self confessed workaholic, Shubhra dotes on her two daughters, who are now both in college. They mean the life to her and they are very proud of her achievements.

Her husband and daughters have been the pillars of strength for her. Her daughters carry both her and her husband's family names. She admits that in India, being a working woman is not easy.

They have to take care of work and home. But she urges women to demand for support and help from their spouse and family. It is very difficult to singularly do justice to both. A soured relationship in early adulthood taught Shubhra the lesson to stand up for herself. Shubhra is thankful to her guardian angel who has enabled all her moves in life and considers herself fortunate. Do what you enjoy. Also financial independence is key. It is no longer a choice to stand on your own feet.

She is a professional brand strategist, a prolific writer and a blogger. She likes to write and blog on a variety of subjects right from branding to emotional intelligence to women empowerment. He gets regular career jumps, aces his Rappraisals and is on his way to get the coveted corner office. His team size is expanding and so is his span of control.

Is a happy man? Given his meaty pay package YES. Is a stress free man? Given his short temper and irritability, NO. This is a syndrome plaguing most employees, especially managers with a team. The cornerstones of management fundamentals like planning, coordination, organizing, staffing, directing and controlling are almost sacrosanct requirements of a manager.

But what makes a manager an effective manager is Delegation. A manager who can effectively delegate tasks to his team can be an efficient manager and also develop his team members. What prevents otherwise savvy and smart managers like Rohit from delegating their tasks? What constitutes this barrier? I love my authority Most managers revel in the power bestowed upon them by virtue of their promotion and capability.

With power comes authority which most managers refuse to let go. When tasks are delegated to a team member, along with the task, a certain degree of autonomy has to be given to take decisions and in some cases execute them. When this autonomy is partially passed on to the team member, a sense of insecurity creeps into the manager.

The delegate the member who has been given the task now can be seen as a competitor, a sure threat to a Manager. Will I become redundant? What she fails to understand is that tasks can be delegated partially or in chunks. Many critical tasks can be kept with the manager and the operational tasks can be offloaded to the team member.

This way, the team members are also given higher responsibility and some pressure of the manager can be reduced. The feeling of redundancy can be managed in this smart way, leaving the delegator and delegate with a sense of accomplishment. Will my secrets leak?

Most managers are business savvy and learn the ropes of the corporate game very fast. Many valuable learnings happens on the job. Pieces of nuggets, tips and techniques, aptitude, call what you may, are honed while doing the job and taking higher challenges. Any manager is a boss because she knows a bit more than her team member, securing her place firmly in the corporate maze.

This is where the secrets of doing them efficiently may be spilled, leaving the manager feeling rather helpless. Can I trust the guy? Most managers believe that their team members cannot complete the task as efficiently and perfectly as they have done. Failing or commiting mistakes are a great way to learn as long as the damage is under control without financial consequences. They suffer from momentary amnesia since they forget that they too have committed blunders.

Not delegating the task because of lack of trust leads to the manager doing everything by herself and stew under pressure. Delegation is a powerful way that a manager can leverage to free up her mindspace for strategic and long term thinking.

If done smartly, not only is she developing her team by giving them challenging tasks but sowing seeds of a great organizational culture. If done in a systematic way, delegation creates new leaders, reduces attrition, enhances productivity, workload is shared, and most importantly leads to reduction of stress for the manager.

She is also an associate professor at D. Many in her family discouraged it as being a male dominated industry and not a good choice for women. But she stuck to her passion and was supported by her parents and spouse. She considers this decision and their support an important turning point in her career. Recipe for Success The only ingredient required to cook is passion.

She wants to author a book on the history and authenticity of regional food in India. She hopes to make authentic Indian cuisines as an important part of university curriculum.

A disciplined fitness enthusiast, Taru believes that a healthy body leads to a healthy mind. Regime to Success She believes in doing her best in whatever she undertakes. Perseverance, passion and belief in oneself are what drive the ace marathoner. Turning point Taru had always been a fitness enthusiast, winning many competitions at health clubs and her gym.

Running was the only sport she was not adept at. Losing in a running contest was the turning point in her life, when she decided to convert her weakness into her strength. She is also one of the few educators, who chose a corporate profession, in the latter years of her career.

After teaching for many years, Taru did a few courses in programming. This led her to the doorway of software industry and technical writing. Taru has strong communication skills and sound technical foundation.

She considered this to be a perfect combination for a career in technical writing and software products which were at the brink of boom in the past decade. Standing Ovation She has 30 podium finishes in her short marathoner career.

Taru has also successfully completed the 50km Pune Ultra Marathon. This marathoner also has a way with the racquet. She has won many inter-corporate badminton tournaments. All this while building a team of 75 people in her function. Motto Do your best in whatever you do. She also wants to participate in a km cycling event.

It was during her stay in London that she was introduced to the menstrual cups, the benefits of which remained with her. She had always been interested in urban designs, and sustainability. Climate change and its environmental implications have always been her areas of passion. Turning point Priyanka has never wanted to stop swimming, surely not because of a natural body cycle.

That is when she got introduced to menstrual cups in London and has been using them since then. After settling in India and post her marriage she wanted to purse her interest in creating an environment of sustainability. Milestones Priyanka has sold over mooncups on her website so far and educated many young women about its hygienic benefits.

You have a mission and a vision, then stick to it. Persist patiently till you achieve results. She also plans to blog in multiple Indian languages that will educate people about personal hygiene and eco friendly products, climate change and sustainability. She remembers practising before and after school everyday developing into a prolific player.

Currently she is the only female squash coach in Bangalore and one of the few female coaches in India in a male dominated sport. Shots to success A single minded focus and lots of family and parental support is what makes her the master of her game. She is the only female coach from India to be on the Panel of International Referees.

That motivated her to continue playing and become an authority in her sport. Inspired by her daughter, she decided to take care of 28 kids suffering from cancer. An outstanding teacher and a foster mother to these kids, Geeta is pursuing a cause which requires immense emotional strength.

Lessons of Life She believes that positive energy and optimism instils you with the energy to go ahead and reach for your dreams. Kudos Geeta is singlehandedly taking care of 28 kids suffering from cancer. She has a special home for these kids in Mumbai where she dedicates her time in taking care of their needs like education, health, food and treatment.

Turning point Geeta got pulled into the cause of cancer 10 years back. She recalls her daughter deciding to help and care forher friend who was a cancer patient. Motto Value your smile, it can make you move mountains.

Kalam Future plan Geeta wants to continue her work and take more children under her loving care. She hopes that more and more people come forward to help and support such kids who are fighting a fatal battle against destiny. Born to a 'typical' Maharashtrian family in the s she says her earliest ambition was to be a doctor.

She loved to study and ended up doing her engineering and business management because she could not choose between the two. Strategy for Success Be clear of your purpose and objectives, be conscious of the path you take, know your inclinations and skills and even talents. Build on your strengths and chose your trade offs wisely. Vision Her vision behind her start up is to create a technological innovation around internet which will help organizations and entrepreneurs in promoting themselves in a cost effective way on web based platforms to create a brand differentiation.

Turning Point She had been managing businesses owned by others and had gathered wide experience in the craft. Hence there came a time when she felt a tug to start something more purposeful of her own that would be challenging. In , she decided to take the plunge. She had a business plan in place and got seed funded, thus creating Web Insights.

Motto If you have walked on ice, might as well dance! Future plans After building her first e-commerce platform, she has plans to build many such successful platforms for large organizations and enterprises.

She comes from a mechanical engineering background with a specialization in creative painting which blends engineering, design and art. Blueprint to success She believes that her passion, expertise, enthusiasm and loads of positive energy enable success.

Standing Ovation She has created and developed more than 15 concepts in Space Design and Visual Merchandising for famous brands across apparels, consumer durables and luxury items.

Future Designs She plans to have international collaborations to enhance her vision of being among the top design companies of the country. An adventure sports lover, Priya has ingrained resilience and the fighter- spirit in her DNA. These stood her in good stead when she met a near fatal accident while cycling up on a hilly track in Pune. Her recovery was nothing short of a miracle. Path to success Believe in yourself. Have the conviction that nothing is impossible. Turning Point It took Priya more than a year to stand up on her own after the terrible mishap she had while cycling.

But not someone to give up in life, Priya fought back and she pushed herself to recover physically and mentally after her accident. Today, she is back in action and has taken leaps in her professional journey.

She is one of the few women finance leaders in the corporate world. Learn from the past, plan for the future by focusing on today. Do your best and God will take care of the rest. Future plan She would like to achieve the satisfaction of having inspired people to achieve common goals, earn respect for having the vision and commitment towards the vision and be identified with the creation of valuable, rewarding and sustainable functional excellence. She got her business idea when her formal attire was spilled with coffee and she was at the airport waiting to a take a flight to Bangalore to attend an important meeting.

Even with expensive brands, the clothes were either too tight at the bust or too loose at the waist. But what about others? She spoke with many women holding well-paid positions in the corporate world who just confirmed her assumption that Indian working women lacked options when it came to wearing formals that reflected their personality, that made them comfortable and exhibited their confidence.

Confident of her idea and the small team of members who believed in her, Nidhi hit it off the ground using her savings and an additional investment from friends and family. However, to grow fast, she needed more money and hence, started meeting potential investors. Today, Nidhi Agarwal is a role model to many young entrepreneurs, and is counted among the well-known women entrepreneurs of the country.

It is no surprise that US cities top the charts. Bengaluru earlier known as Bangalore , the Silicon Valley of India, ranks 15th. The city is home to approximately 3, to 4, active technology startups and has achieved the second highest growth rate for exit volume and VC investment among the top This in turn increases the attention of the international investor community, who are eager to find high potential startups.

The city has a solid pipeline of cost-efficient Talent, ranking However, the analysis also suggests the average quality of the local talent is not yet on par with the elite startup ecosystems around the world.

Their success helps inject wealth and expertise into the ecosystem. The action is also spreading to beyond metros and Tier 1 cities. Lack of gender equality is common across all start-up ecosystems, found the Compass of the top 20 start-ups ecosystems. India also lags behind in gender balance in the start-up space. India ranks an abysmal 70 of the 77 countries surveyed. Women entrepreneurs were more found in home based businesses of making pickles, curries, tailoring and such low investment enterprises.

Women who were professionally qualified would building a strong customer connect and profitable goodwill. Even reports, it is evident that more women running the business, the better are the chances of success. The Indian government, in the recent years, has taken massive initiatives to ensure that no one, be it men or women, typically join a company and choose to grow within that setup.

Very few professional women would think of starting a venture because of entry barriers. According to Forbes Magazine, women account for only 10 per cent of the total number of entrepreneurs in the country.

However, studies reveal that women have immense potential and are likely to be more successful start-up owners than men.

Well, to begin with, women are in charge of a substantial amount of household spending, making them more efficient in understanding customer needs and preferences. Also, a challenge that women face while building start-ups can be turned into an advantage - Their though the survey was based outside India, experts believe that these observations are likely to stand true in the Indian ecosystem as well. Start-up companies with more female executives have higher success rates It has been observed that companies with more female executives, especially as VPs and directors, are likely to succeed more than the ones having fewer females.

There are close to equal chances of success and failure in companies where there are females, with failure rate slightly overpowering the success rate. However, the situation is opposite in companies where there are 4 or more females, with the success rate varying between 20 to 50 per cent.

With these is left behind in grasping the opportunity to become their own boss and help generate employment in the country at different levels. The loan amount would range between Rs 10 lakh to Rs 1 crore, with 1. Female entrepreneurs, like their male counterparts, are influenced by the general business environment in which they live.

There are few incentives for entrepreneurs - male or female - when the general business environment is unstable, and the procedures for starting, running, or exiting a business are highly regulated or bureaucratic. Formal institutions or cultural conditions create additional barriers for women that make it more difficult to start or grow a business enterprise.

For example, women may face diminished legal rights either for all women or with respect to rights that women lose at marriage or restrictions on their activities outside of the home or on their ability to travel within their communities, outside their communities, or outside the country.

The institutional foundations including gendered institutions, access to resources, and the entrepreneurship culture form the context from which female start-ups emerge.

The Entrepreneurial Eco-System contains variables that capture the access to resources and institutions needed for female business development. This is a quintessential part of the scheme as majority of women, especially belonging to the less privileged section of the society, are clueless about entrepreneurial practices.

The portal has been set up with an investment of under Rs. On the day of the launch, about , beneficiaries under 10, self-help groups registered themselves on the portal. In the last couple of years, many women entrepreneurs like Nidhi Agarwal are making news in the start up scene for all the right reasons. While Kiran Mazumdar -Shaw has been a poster woman for Indian entrepreneurship, many others are following suit. Startups like CashKaro, Clovia, Karyaah are all women led.

Like most other start-ups, their journey has not been an easy one. While all the challenges they face are not gender related, women led businesses do have to go that extra mile to prove themselves to prospective investors. Globally, women entrepreneurs realise that the odds are firmly against them when they venture out to raise funds. A study revealed that 92 per cent of investment teams in the top global VC firms are men and another study suggests that only 4. But it is not just external or ecosystem challenges, that hold women back.

Some of the factors are intrinsic. According to Babson College's Global Entrepreneur Monitor, an emotion that can hold back women entrepreneurs is their fear of failure. The chances of success and failure are equal at the commencement of any new business, but as per the study, men handle it better than women. It is grit and persistence and patience that holds the test of time. Men or women, who standby their venture and have the conviction, finally emerge winners.

If India can get into that mind space we will see incredible innovation and change in the country. The beauty of it is that it can be as big and small as you want it to be. It does not matter where one comes from — IT, teaching, designing, social networking, planning, home-making — each concept holds the key to limitless success, provided one is willing to make the right moves. Most importantly, one cannot let any barrier be too big to give up on the baby — the start-up idea. The odds are slowly turning in the favour of the entrepreneur, from government policies to the mind-set of the buyers and sellers in the market and the shift in paradigm is only going to bring more fruitful opportunities for those who are willing to make the most of them.

Behind every successful women entrepreneur, is a story that tells us that no challenge is too big; what should be big is passion and will. Of course, becoming an entrepreneur is challenging. Of course, it is not joyride; it is being the captain of the ship, a ship that is likely to sail on uncertain waves, rising currents, and unpredictable winds. Pallavi believes that HR is a business critical function.

Discussing the strategies to stay relevant in a fast evolving business of managing people, Pallavi Srivastava, Country Head - Human Resources, IBM Singapore, in conversation with Woman At Work , explains the art of maintaining a business outlook and people focus as a Business Leader.

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