Nilanjan Bhowal

Tete-A-Tete with Experts Dated:  March 28, 2014
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Architect: Nilanjan Bhowal

Mr. Nilanjan Bhowal - An architect and planner with years of industry experience , who is also one of the industry advisors for ZingyHomes talks about his upbringing, accomplishments, style and more. Read on to know him better!  

Some Personal Information that you would like to share.

I completed my education from St.  Xavier’, Delhi in 1984 and received a Gold Medal in Architecture from Institute of Environmental Design, Gujarat in 1989. Did my post-graduation specializing in energy-efficient architecture from Istanbul Technical University and then Masters in Architecture from Catholic University, Belgium.

I promote Green projects,  and have presented my works at Conferences in India and abroad – including the American Solar Energy Conference at San Diego.

Hobbies include Music, photography and Travel – having extensively traveled all over India, as well as Europe, Asia and US. 
Major activity of interest is Adventure sports and Rally- driving.

When did you first start your practice and what kind of projects have you been doing?

After my graduation, I worked for 3 years before going abroad for my two post-graduations. After coming back, I started my own company; Design Consortium, in 1995. 
Since then we've executed various projects ranging from urban developments, to individual residences, hotel interiors and office spaces. Conservation has been a major part of our works and we've worked on quite a few influential buildings such as The National Library in Kolkata.

Tell us something about your approach to your projects.

The site, it's context and the projects spatial requirements are the key determinants of our approach towards a projects. We also look at client requirements and client satisfaction as major parameters to address in a project. And most importantly, the energy saving techniques and achieving a cost effective design.

What defines your style?

Minimalist and contemporary, Though we try to experiment when the project allows.

Which kind of projects do you enjoy the most?

We often try to grab opportunities to work on projects that have a bigger scope of creativity and come with a challenging context. But, that been said, we undertake each project (big or small) with the same zest.

Tell us something about your most favorite project.

My most favourite project was a resort cum campsite called Camp Fortail Creek in Corbett. The entire project was made with materials and technology available at site - mud, stone, bamboo, wood, thatch and with the help of local artisans. The design teams stayed at site, working with local artisans and building the project. 

Who/what inspires you and your works?
I have been lucky enough to have studied and traveled in different parts of the world. My experiences and exposure, formulate my philosophy in my life and work. My works have a definite influence of the Bauhaus movement and the minimalists like Watler Gropius and Gerrit Reitveld. 

Do you feel architects and designers should be concerned about environmental sustainability?

Definitely. No Creator can be a Destroyer !! It is the duty of a designer to help protect the world we live in. Sustainability is our first priority when we commence a project and have been acknowledged for our initiatives in that direction. 

What has been your biggest challenge so far?

I wouldn't say one specific challenge but I treat my every day as a challenge - to achieve a balance between creativity and functionality is one major challenge so far. 

What challenges do you continue to face and what is your strategy to tackle them?

The lack of professionalism among building contractors and also a client's lack of sensitivity continues to be a challenge. Patience and diligently educating both of them, at very stage of the project, is the only way ahead. 

What drives you?

The excitement to create a design that is complete in every sense. From functionality of the spaces to the comfort and satisfaction of the users.

Any words of wisdom for youngsters starting out today.

My advice for the youngsters starting in this field would be to be passionate about what you do. Only patience, hard work and dedication will reap the desired results.

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