Modern mastery

February, 2016


Architect Rohit Sringeri sheds light on how things we grew up with, can extensively influence our subconscious decisions.
Small architectural elements that are an integral part of our growing years, have now been relegated to the background in favor of tall, concrete jungles. A part of us always thinks of these things nostalgically as does Architect Rohit Sringeri who is in the process of doing something to bring it all back.

Rohit Sringeri, Principal Architect and Founder-CEO, Maysons, has come back after years abroad in a professional capacity in order to do some meaningful work. The name Maysons itself is an Anglicised interpretation of ´Mestry´, meaning mason in Kannada. Two things were apparent on his arrival here: first, the construction business lacked a corporate touch, a concept prevalent internationally; and secondly, the products or constructions here, had by and large, no differentiating factors. ´Take away their signage and they would just be part of a concrete jungle,´ he says.

The premise of going independent under the banner of Maysons was simple: revive local traditional architecture but, in the modern context. Maysons works on creating a seamˇless integration of traditional architectural elements with modern lifestyle. Originally from Chikmagalur, Karnataka, Rohit shares more about his background and upbringing with RUTH DSOUZA PRABHU.

Is traditional architecture relevant in today´s context?
Yes. Traditions are a part of human evolution and are what attach us to a particular system developed by us. If they did not matter, we would not be able to admire the beauty of structures like the Pyramids, the Taj Mahal, or the temples of Belur and Halebid. Modern architects continue to derive their inspiration through traditional methods and monuments, and work around them to give the projects a modern outlook. This is especially seen in European countries where architecture has, through the years, derived inspiration from predecessors and created something new and relevant, while retaining the essence of an era gone by. That is why we find such beauty in the architecture of these places. Some of our traditions, with respect to construction, are lost since they were never documented. Growth should reflect local traditions, by drawing inspiration from them and bringing them into the modern context. This allows for a common thread across generations of architecture, which in turn builds the identity of a place. A few architects are now working towards this..

Can such elements be introduced in high rises in cities as well?
They definitely can be introduced in high-rises as well. However, currently this is a challenging prospect. Over time, masons working on these traditional forms have been reduced to a handful. The lack of sufficiently trained labour is often a problem. That being said, if there is a move to revive these traditional architectural methods, more people will take to training in the field, thus making its availability easier. Pricing will also be positively affected, making it easier for people to adopt these forms in their spaces. .

What should be kept in mind to bring in local architecture into a home space?
Traditional architectural designs spell class and style. When one tries to bring traditional flavors into their home space, there is an added emphasis on art, use of traditional materials and a good sense of design which can incorporated in a conˇtemporary way. Traditional methods mean materials, designs, layouts and planning, all of which can be incorporated into modern-day buildings. .

What are the benefits in the current real estate scenario?
Traditional architecture redefines modernˇism in a very sustainable and contemporary way and even signifies growth. The main intention is to blend tradition subtly, in a modern way, yet keep the identity of a particular place alive. While most of us are global Indians and appreciate what the world has to offer us, we all want a piece of home with us. A Californian styled home would be out-of-place in the Indian context. What was afforded by only the rich and the famous is now plausible even to the common man. .

Traditional, usually comes with a prohibitive price tag. True?
It is a mental block to think that traditional usually comes with a huge price tag. The price is relative to all the modern developments. Today, with a marginal 10 ű 12 per cent price difference, one can opt for an amazing traditional finish in place of more modern materials. .

How does traditional architecture contribute to history being handed down?
Traditional architecture is a perfect marriage between culture and art. We, at Maysons, promote traditional architecture and offer art, culture and traditions to the people who purchase our product. One is actually creating history by purchasing our products..

When bringing in traditional forms, have you had to tweak things to fit into the current context?
Bringing traditional forms comes with its set of challenges as a lot of science and research goes behind it. Tweaking is avoided as far as possible, but in certain areas it is resorted to to blend or increase strength. .

What are you currently working on and what is its USPs?
Maysons´ core philosophy is being traditionally modern. Maysons Udbhava at Jakkur is an example of fine traditional architecture which suits the modern context. At Udbhava we are using traditional materials like Adobe bricks, lime plaster, oxide, wood, copper and bronze that make it unique. It is also designed to fit perfectly into today´s lifestyle. It spells class..

Text: Ruth Dsouza Prabhu
photos: Andagere Architects

Maysons SJR Realty,
18/5 Near Jakkur Lake,
Bengaluru - 560 064.
Tel: 080-2369 0310, 99000 52129.

Meet the Architect
Rohit Sringeri
Rohit Sringeri of Maysons and Ajith Andagere of Andagere Architects, founded in 2014
Firm specialisation: Real Estate Development
Design philosophy: Traditionally Modern
Favourite architect/Designer: BV Dhosi,
FL Wright, Charles Correa