Theme : MATERIALITY & CRAFT
Urban scale works – projects of epic proportions – have diverse elements, which need to be expressed but also unified, and in our projects we have endeavoured to do so by often using sandstone as a structured surface material. The idea of veneering stone on brick and concrete was not an easy decision. It implied that we would have to give up the use of honestly expressing construction materials on façades. Unfortunately, it was evident that exposed concrete would not weather well and majority of Chandigarh buildings were showing distress and spalling. Most of our contemporaries had not used stone as a new material and the earlier Mughal and Colonial buildings had used stone load-bearing masonry walls. The lessons on stone veneering were relearnt from Fatehpur Sikri, and modified with the use of new cutting tools.
Stone cladding on buildings provided extra insulation and reinforced the idea of sustainability. Stone veneering met the requirements of durability and was ideal for expressing and unifying large public works.