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The  projects in this section collate various projects done by research experts at DICRC in an individual capacity. They are reflection of the diversity of work done by members of this organization.

Crafts in Interior Architecture: India, 1990 onwards 
Rishav Jain 

The book "Crafts in Interior Architecture: India, 1990 onwards” by Rishav Jain critically examines the manifestation of crafts in the domain of interior architecture in India today. It attempts to understand the position of craft in interior architecture and design in contemporary India. The book establishes five emerging models of practice that prevail when crafts and interior architecture come together. The book is divided into two major sections, one looks at theoretical understanding of the subject and the second evaluates the recent practice of interior architecture later leading to the emerging modes of practice.

An Assistant Professor at Faculty of Design, CEPT University, Rishav Jain currently also works as a Research Expert at Design Innovation and Craft Resource Centre (DICRC)






Book Details 
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Title: Crafts in Interior Architecture: India, 1990 onwards
Author: Rishav Jain
Published by: SID Research Cell, CEPT University, Ahmedabad
Published in: 2015
Price: 3000/-
ISBN 978-81-904096-6-7

How to order:
 Send in an email to kdaprsid@cept.ac.in and sidresearchcell@cept.ac.in with a subject: To order Craft in Interior Architecture book.


Abstract of the book
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Much has been talked about and researched on the traditional usage and integration of crafts in our traditional and vernacular built environment. There is enough documentation and wide literature available on the subject of our rich built heritage. But very little has been said about the manifestation of crafts in the present day built environment. The developments happening in contemporary interior architecture that connect to crafts in various ways, are barely documented. The link between our traditional space making crafts and their contemporary usage seems amiss. 'Crafts in Interior Architecture: India, 1990 onwards', authored by Rishav Jain and published by SID Research Cell, Faculty of Design CEPT University, tries to establish the ground for this missing link. 

The book largely studies the integration of crafts in the domain of interior architecture in India today. It attempts to understand what is the position of craft in interior architecture and design in contemporary India? The book establishes five emerging models of practice that prevail when crafts and interior architecture come together. The research denotes the multiplicity of our interior architecture practices where five streams are identified depicting the myriad manifestations of crafts in the practice of interior architecture in India today. These are listed and explained as Continuation, Standardisation, Apposition, Translation, Denotation.

With a thorough understanding of the subject, the intention of the author was to examine the contributions of various practitioners within the domain of interior architecture who challenged the norm and have made a valuable contribution towards crafts. The book throws light on various discussions, ideas, literature, and criticism on space making craft and its practice today. The position of craft here is studied in depth by understanding the designers’/architects’ approach towards craft in the interior architecture and decoding it by uncovering meanings attached to it.

The research started with the main query of ‘What has been the position of crafts in interior architecture in India during the last twenty years?’. This being the central question there were many subsidiary queries that helped shaping the entire study. The enquiries like ‘What are the possible directions/approaches seen regarding crafts today in interior architecture?’ ; ‘What positions does a designer/architect take while working with crafts?’; ‘How has the role of a craftsperson changed in contemporary practices?’ have been addressed through this book.

Chapter Outlines
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The book is largely divided into two major sections, one looks at theoretical understanding of the subject through literature and the second looks at the recent practice of interior architecture later leading to the emerging modes of practice. The entire structure has been visualized as a narrative, wherein the first part discusses the idea of ‘craft’ in india. This is taken forward with the concept of Space Making Crafts in the second part where craft moves beyond its small scale application of products and objects. The third part dwells into detailing the attitudes towards crafts by various architects and discusses the integration of crafts and design. The fourth part elaborates the period post 1990 and the various projects where crafts integrate with the built form. The analysis done in this part is based on previous chapters leading to the discussion of  the emerging modes of practices. The fifth part poses newer question that come in the mind with reflections of the topic studied.

About the Author
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Rishav Jain is Assistant Professor at Faculty of Design, CEPT University with interests in the position of crafts in the contemporary built environment. He completed his Masters in Interior Architecture and Design specializing in Craft and Technology from Faculty of Design, CEPT University, Ahmedabad with a Gold Medal and a Best Research Award. He also has to his merit a Gold Medal for his Bachelor in Design(Interiors) by Guru Nanak Dev University Amritsar. He’s been actively involved in research and design writing and his works have been published at various national and international platforms. His book, "Crafts in Interior Architecture- India, 1990 onwards” talks about the current position of craft in the built landscape of India. As a Research Expert at Design Innovation and Craft Resource Centre (DICRC), he has mentored and organized many craft innovation workshops, training programs, seminars, lectures and  lead various research projects.


This research project titled "Wooden Architecture Collection of Gujarat at South Asian Decorative Arts and Crafts Collection (SADACC) Trust, United Kingdom” is primarily investigating the South Asian collection of the SADACC Trust. This project is result of the Charles Wallace India Trust (CWIT) / Simon Digby Memorial Charity (SMDC) Research Grant awarded to A/Prof. Jay Thakkar in June 2015. The emphasis of this project is on the interior architecture elements (like doors, windows, columns, etc.) of traditional houses of Gujarat, India. These traditional houses constitute a major part of the cultural repository, but yet they are most often neglected in the academic literature. Typically research has favoured royal collections or religious buildings, hence there is great lacunae in research on the everyday traditional and vernacular buildings. This investigation uses the book Naqsh: The Art of Wood Carving of Traditional Houses of Gujarat: Focus on Ornamentation (2004), by Jay Thakkar and the research of the Design Innovation and Craft Resource Centre (DICRC) at CEPT University, which has a vast  digital catalogue of traditional and vernacular buildings, interior architectural elements, furniture and objects from Gujarat ( http://buildingcraftlab.dicrc.in/). 
Collaborations
The research is a collaborative project and was initiated between Design Innovation and Craft Resource Centre (DICRC), Faculty of Design, CEPT University, Ahmedabad, India and South Asian Decorative Arts and Crafts Collection (SADACC) at Norwich, United Kingdom. SADACC Trust was founded by Philip and Jeannie Millward in 2010 as a registered charity. The mission of SADACC is to record, conserve and promote the arts, crafts and cultures of South Asia. The SADACC Trust has more than 4000 items in their collection that primarily focuses primarily on India and Pakistan and to a lesser extent on neighbouring countries of in Central Asia, as well as Burma, Thailand and Indonesia. The Trust holds a unique collection of the architectural and furniture pieces from India and Pakistan, which is the principal reference material for this project. 

Research Process
A preliminary investigation was done for all the items in the collection (through cataloged files, digital data and looking at actual items) to see the possibility of the investigation, cataloging and researching the relevant information for selected items. After a detailed discussion with SADACC founders Philip and Jeannie Millward and curator Amy Chang as well as researchers from University of East Anglia (Harjeet Kaur and Nadine Zubair), the project was narrowed down to the wooden architectural items focusing mainly on Gujarat. It was collectively decided to work with only architectural pieces from Gujarat for three main reasons. The architectural pieces constitute the earlier set of collections and they have not been documented in detail and also lacked detailed research data. SADACC having the largest public collection of Indian Architectural items in United Kingdom became a second reason to give this set a priority. The third reason being DICRC’s expertise in wooden architecture of Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh would help in assimilating and researching necessary information related to these items. The furniture and the objects were not taken into this research primarily due to the time constraints.

Activities at SADACC
Research and Cataloging
The wooden architecture collection of Gujarat at SADACC is spread across the Old Skating Rink and houses at Wramplingham and Blakeney. This collection was investigated and thoroughly photo-documented. Each of the architectural pieces from Gujarat were selected and classified into groups like facade, door, window, column, bracket, ceiling and balcony (and in some cases the sub categories were also developed). Further the task was to understand the indigenous cataloging system developed by Philip and Jeannie Millward over number of years as well as the recently adopted ADLIB archival system. On basis of this a new format was developed which would complement with both these system still operational at SADACC, henceforth the research data can be fed into both these system with ease. Total of 22 items were researched and cataloged out of 34 wooden architectural items from Gujarat at SADACC. Each of the selected items was then researched through secondary sources and primary inspection of the pieces. Detailed information about each piece was written in the prescribed format. This information will be used not only for the online cataloging system but also to generate awareness about the significance of the architectural heritage to the local people, scholars, academicians and students of United Kingdom.

Presentation
A/Prof. Jay Thakkar gave a presentation to faculty members and post-graduate students from the MS in Building History, Department of Architecture, University of Cambridge, UK. The presentation focused on the Traditional and Vernacular Architecture of Gujarat and research projects of Design Innovation and Craft Resource Centre (DICRC), CEPT University. It was followed by question and answer and discussion session on the position of the heritage in Gujarat and possibility of Cambridge University students doing some research on traditional architecture and crafts of Gujarat, India.
 
Interactions 
During the course of research, there was the opportunity to meet a couple of people from the field of art, architecture and craft related to museums and universities. Philip, Jeannie and SADACC team were instrumental in organising these meetings. A meeting with Prof. John Mack, Professor, School of Art History and World Art Studies, and Chairman, The Sainsbury Institute for Art (UEA), Norwich was arranged to see the possibility of collaboration between SADACC trust, UEA (specifically Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts) and CEPT University. This collaboration would initiate the research in the field of traditional and vernacular architecture as well as furniture of India (with focus on northwest India). Another meeting with Prof. Hilary Carlisle, Dean of Arts and Design at Norwich University of The Arts (NUA) was very fruitful in terms of possible student exchange program between NUA and Faculty of Design and Design Innovation and Craft Resource Centre (DICRC), CEPT University. NUA has Bachelor of architecture course and going to start Interior Architecture course in this year. Further NUA very strongly believes in the vocational oriented course structure which fits very well with the research activities of DICRC and many courses at CEPT University. A detailed discussion with Kerryn Greenberg, Curator (International Art) at TATE Modern gave insight into the various acquisition policies and procedures at TATE gallery for collecting the artwork from across the world. This has been enriching information as it will help in refining some processes of CEPT Archives (for built environment and culture in India) at CEPT University. Additionally there was the opportunity to meet Dame Elizabeth Esteve-Coll, previous director of the V&A, and former Vice Chancellor of the UEA.
The purpose of this project is to conduct research on vernacular and traditional storage furniture pieces from Gujarat, India, which are a part of the South Asian Decorative Arts and Craft Collection (SADACC) Trust, Norwich, UK. Considering the time available for this project, i.e. three weeks (23rd May to 11th June 2016), the research focuses on selected storage pieces from among 141 furniture items from the India collection at SADACC. These furniture pieces are studied in terms of their, utility, history, significance, materials, craft techniques, ornamentation, and associated customs. This research transpires from the ongoing yearlong international collaborative research project between Design Innovation and Craft Resource Centre (DICRC), CEPT University, Ahmedabad, India, and the SADACC Trust, Norwich, UK. The project titled Vernacular Furniture of North-West India was initiated in December 2015. The objective of this research is to enrich the existing database of the SADACC Trust, and at the same time accumulate research material for the ongoing yearlong international collaborative research project between the two organizations. This research is a result of the Charles Wallace India Trust (CWIT) and Simon Digby Memorial Charity (SDMC) short research fellowship, awarded to Mitraja Vyas, Senior Researcher at DICRC, CEPT University, in the year 2016.
The short research on vernacular furniture of Gujarat at the SADACC Trust aims at studying selected storage pieces from among the 141 furniture items from the India collection at SADACC. These furniture pieces are studied in terms of their, utility, history, significance, materials, craft techniques, ornamentation, and associated customs. The research transpires from a yearlong international collaborative research project - `Vernacular Furniture of North-West India’ - between DICRC, CEPT University and the SADACC Trust, that was initiated in December 2015. North-West India comprises of the states of Gujarat, Rajasthan and Punjab. The need for this project arises due to the lack of documentation and records on vernacular and traditional furniture of India at large. There is little or no research material available on such, making this a significant research project. The first phase of this research project focuses on Gujarat, which will act as a model for the research on vernacular furniture of other states in the subsequent phases. This being a primary research, most data is collected first-hand through the means of field visits within the state of Gujarat. At this stage (June, 2016), the DICRC team has travelled a distance of around 5000 km (3100 mi) across 13 districts in Gujarat, recording 500 odd pieces of vernacular furniture, and collecting oral histories related to them.

A lot of furniture from Gujarat in the SADACC collection is bought from secondary sources such as furniture dealers, leading to a lack of accurate information regarding the pieces. This research aims at strengthening the
information on these furniture pieces by drawing parallels with the findings on the research being conducted back in India. The Guajarati furniture at SADACC will also feature in the final outcome of the yearlong collaborative project.
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