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Lalbhai Institute of Indology

Ahmedabad, India
1 of 7

The Institue For Indology building in Ahmedabad was one of Balkrishna Doshi's first public buildings as a solo artist outside of Le Corbusier's office. At this stage Doshi is deep in the shadow of his previous employer, although some individual developments are already starting to surface - mainly in the idea to store the collection of Indological documents in an open-to-outside-air basement, preserving the climatic conditions under which they'd previously been kept.

Also, the peripheral ambulatory/shade zone is typologically Indian. It can also be thought of, here, as a kind of thickening of the brise-soleil into occupiable space (as opposed to the bold thickening of the sun-breakers' actual mass in Corbusier's own Indian buildings). But at that point we're chasing ourselves in circles - wasn't the brise-soleil itself in some sense inspired by these kinds of interstitial spaces sheltered behind screens. The composition, meanwhile, is quite familiar - this is a near cousin to the elevation of the unbuilt Governor's Mansion for Chandigarh. Of course, since Doshi was in the office for that project, it's again hard to say where exactly the idea originated.