Art and Innovation hub is part of the rural educational campus of Agastya International Foundation in Andhra Pradesh.
The architecture of this building stemmed forth from the understanding to bring together the arts and science and allow the learning that happens when strict disciplines are broken and a natural leap frogging from one to the other becomes the norm rather than the exception.
This idea is further strengthened from the belief that the attributes of the future are clearly stacked in favour of our creative community, if we pay heed to the idea of design thinking to solve many problems that escapes a fixated rationalist approach.
We lowered our gaze to what lay under our feet, the ‘rock lizard’ shaking its head drew our attention to re-adaptation here. It was this simple, fun intuition that excited us to explore further this connections we were seeking from ‘the language of this land’, which is older than words.
Over laying the structural determinants and costs became our next priority along with capturing the views of the valley beyond.
Tucking the ensemble into the contours further excited us about the potential of this approach so that it “effortlessly slips into the earth.”
To the cut and fill that became the process of integrating our structure to the slopes, we added the dimension of covering part of the building under the sweep of the earth, which eventually was covered with greenery, merging the structure to the surrounding landscape.
The main entry meanders around the structure, where the earth berm covers the roof and merge into the landscape. As one moves closer to the entry, vistas open towards the exterior at various volumes. The double height area is a multiuse space for art installation, workshops and exhibition.
Class room span along the contour, opening into semi covered decks. The double height gallery connecting all the class rooms has skylights at the roof level that create interesting play of light and shadow along the path. The studio space spread in and out of the structure, blurring boundaries between interior and exterior.
The first floor accommodates the innovation hub, which extends to an additional block connected with a covered walkway. The earth berm hugging the structure at the entry accommodates the ramp to the first floor, creating an independent entry to the innovation hub.
The interior layout of the innovation hub is designed based on the theme “Fun based interactive learning environment”.The space reflect ‘Design thinking’ and Learning how to learn’ attitude.
The built form is predominantly a column and beam structure is kept in grey tone, with exposed concrete columns and ceiling, Local stone retaining wall, cement flooring and structural steel members painted grey.
The uniform colour scheme creates a perfect background, an open canvas to display art and sculptures done by the kids that brings colour and texture into the interiors.
The shale rock available in the terrain is used in combination with the random rubble masonry for the exterior retaining walls and outdoor flooring along with precast panels with leaf imprints.
Material Used :
1. Facade cladding: Combination of random rubble masonry with local stone/shale rock And table mould brick masonry with plaster and painting
2. Flooring: Cement flooring
3. Doors & Windows: Metal, glass and perforated metal sheets
4. Roofing: Reinforced cement concrete slab
5. Interior lighting: LED light fixtures
6. Interior furniture: Metal & recycled pine wood