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Dakshin chitra Chennai

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Dakshin chitra Chennai,Southern India Heritage Village

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Dakshin chitra Chennai

  1. 1. • Dakshinachitra is an exciting cross cultural living museum of art, architecture, lifestyles, crafts and performing arts of south India. • One can explore 17 heritage houses, amble along recreated streetscapes, exploring contextual exhibitions, interacting with typical village artisans and witnessing folk performances set in an authentic ambience. • Dakshinachitra literally means – “a picture of the south” • Spread over a huge expansive land of 10 acres. • Dakshinachitra is more than just a venue-it is a heritage village, a place where contemporary art, music and dance forms of the south finds its manifestation into a journey of discovery and self-learning • The sprawling ten acres campus is divided into four prominent states of the south-Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh further emphasising on their respective culture in terms of house architecture that is re-modelled district wise-brahmin house,potters house,merchant house etc…textile and handicrafts found in temples,art exhibitions and more, other activities at the centre include performing arts, music,research and educational programs with workshops and heritage trips which connect the neighbouring villages at the centre • Here the states are clustered together but their diversities are kept alive INTRODUCTION KARNATAKA SETTLEMENT ANDHRA PRADESH SETTLEMENT KERALA SETTLEMENT TAMIL NADU SETTLEMENT SITE LOCATION • Dakshinachitra occupies ten acres overlooking the bay of Bengal, at Muttakadu ,twenty five kilometres south of Chennai on the east coast road to Mamllapuram, Tamil Nadu, India SITE Architect : Laurie baker Benny kuriakose Client : madras craft foundation Contractor : Ravindran Built up area :3 acres Construction time :10 years Cost of project:rs: 70 lakh CLIMATE: • Rainfall is moderately low • The temperature is high • The relative humidity is semi-humid ENTERING DAKSHINACHITRA: • The entry to Dakshinachitra is very cosy and small like entering a south Indian home • The various play with brick at the entrance compound wall façade etc.. bore witness to the involvement of brick master in the design • There were the archetypal chocolate pillars , thatched roofs and richly carved doors which effectively restricts the view into the interiors ,thus leaving the imagination to us • And the inside art is well worth hiding ,once you enter the village the world is entirely different from the urban setting outside 1
  2. 2. • Reception centre Craft shop Seminar hall orientation film • Gallery for temporary exhibitions • Restaurant • Library and archives • Mandapam • Canteen • Craft bazaar • Amphitheatre • Activity hall GENERAL KERALA SECTION • Hindu house-trivandrum district • Cattle shed • Hindu house-calicut district • Granary and textile exhibition • Syrian christian house-puthupally • Small pavilion padipura TAMIL NADU SECTION KARNATAKA SECTION • Weavers houses ANDHRA PRADESH SECTION • Ikkat weavers house • Coastal Andhra thatch house;cattle shed and grananry AMENITIES • Guest house • Artisans quarters • Lathe workshop • Driver’s shed • Parking • Gallery and stores • Restaurant • Craft shop • Tea shop • Merchant house chettinadu , putukotai district • Agriculturists house • Potters house • Basket weavers house • Ayyanar shrine • Weavers house • Textile exhibition • Agraharam brahmin house • Art exhibition GUEST HOUSE KERALA HOUSES ANDHRA HOUSES KARNATAKA HOUSES TAMIL NADU HOUSES OAT ENTRANCE PLAZA SITE PLAN OAT LIBRARY Kerala section Tamil Nadu section Karnataka section Andhra Pradesh section ENTRANCE PLAZAGUEST HOUSE TEA SHOP MANDAPAM CIRCULATION 2
  3. 3. VEHICULAR FLOW • The vehicular flow is restricted at the entry plaza itself • The parking sheds are also provided in traditional style roofing PEDESTRIAN FLOW • All pedestrian paths were paved by stones with trees on either side • The pedestrian flow was clearly demarcated from the paths used for commercial purposes • The pedestrian flow gets branched out from the entrance to various state’s houses VEGETATION • Trees are seen in dense near the parking area, guest houses ,Kerala section and Karnataka section • Trees are seen in other parts of site also along the pathways • Regions marked in yellow were devoid of trees • Palm trees , coconut trees were majorly seen TREES AROUND OAT TREES AROUND SHRINE WATERBODY • The artificial pond runs from the oat long the Tamil Nadu section ,Kerala complex and artisans complex. • The flow of water bodies are bounded with stones • Wooden bridges run above the water bodies connecting the children’s play area and the Tamil Nadu section • These ponds get filled during rainy season as these ponds serve as a collecting point for the entire site. These ponds get dried during other times and it gives a barren view from the Tamil Nadu section and play area VIEW OF THE DRIED- UP POND TAMIL NADU SECTION • Mostly, tamil houses have an inner courtyard which is used for drying grains, shelling pods and for functions. • There will be a raised verandah or small seating area in the front of the house, called a tinnai. • The houses from tamil nadu at dakshinachitra were typical houses found in many villages throughout tamil region. 3
  4. 4. WEAVERS HOUSE FROM KANCHIPURAM • This house had one functional pit loom used for weaving Kanchipuram saris, along with a kitchen, a puja room and a front hall. • The weaver’s house had a large paved open area in the back that served as a utility area with toilets, bathing area, and facilities for washing clothes and kitchen vessels. • over 16 weavers houses were documented from Kanchipuram and the most repetitive elements and planning were documented and depicted in Dakshinachitra PLAN Courtyard Back garden WEAVING AREA COURTYARD 1.Thinnai 2,4,8,11.Store 7.Hall 9.Eating area 3.Pooja 5.Passage 10.Kitchen 11.Bathing area 13.Back veranda • The exterior façade of the house at DakshinaChitra was a replication of a common façade of smaller Nattukottai Chettiar merchant houses the outside columned verandah of Burmese teak were a reconstruction from a house in the village of Aryakudi. • The basic floor plan of a Chettinad house consists of a) an outside verandah (thinnai) for guests, with a room for conducting business on one or both ends; b) an interior courtyard to be used in ceremonies, with a raised seating area at one or both ends; c) a series of small double rooms opening off the main courtyard, for storage, prayer and sleeping and d) a small courtyard behind for cooking and for the women to socialize. MERCHANTS HOUSE FROM CHETTINAD Thinnai Working area Working area Central courtyard Rear Thinnai kitchen PLAN SECTION ELEVATION VIEW OF THE HOUSE RICHLY CARVED DOORWAY BRAHMIN HOUSE FROM AMBUR • Brahmin houses were connected by a common wall and they were narrow in width and very long. • The Ambur house originally had a longer courtyard for the cows, followed by another long, enclosed area, planted rather wildly, which led down to a stepped river embankment. • Due to space restrictions at DakshinaChitra, the second courtyard was made smaller and the third has been omitted. • The upper floor was used for sleeping, drying and storing grain. Clerestory provided for lighting and ventilationVIEW OF THE CLUSTER 4
  5. 5. PLAN AGRICULTURISTS HOUSE FROM MAYAVARAM • The agriculturist’s house from Mayavaram district, is typical of many houses found in the villages in and around Thanjavur and Mayavaram districts. • It has been reconstructed without any changes except in its orientation. • The original orientation of the house was north, so that the puja room and sacred area were on the west. • The front rooms were used for storage and sleeping. • The house had a second block with two small parallel courtyards :one used for the kitchen and eating, and one for bathing. EXPLODED VIEW COURTYARD FRONT THINNAI THE FIRST FLOOR WILL BE CONNECTED FOR THE ENTIRE STRETCH ELEVATION POTTERS HOUSE FROM CHENGLEPUT • The turn of the 20th century house of a practising potter is from the village of Tiruvallur, in Chengelpet district. • The original house, though built for one family, was occupied by two brothers and their families, each living on one side of the house with a separate kitchen. The house depicts the actual lifestyle of the potters, with space for living and working. • The backyard originally had space for cooking and for cows; at DakshinaChitra, a separate work shed behind the living quarters has been added for demonstration purposes. Thatched roofing supported by wooden poles with low eave projection to dry their mud products Interior of the workshop where the potter’s wheel is present with storage space for mud and paddling deck WORKSOP FOR POTTERS STORAGE LIVING LIVING FENCING WITH DRIED THORNY BUSHES FENCING WITH DRIED THORNY BUSES PLAN OF THE CLUSTER 5
  6. 6. • These houses are two reproductions of simple mud houses occupied by ordinary working class people of the state. • The interiors of the houses show the lifestyle of ordinary villagers with space for cooking, praying, living and sleeping. • Ayyanar worship is popular from Madurai and the Pudukkottai area up to Vriddhachalam. • Ayyanar is a popular village guardian deity who lives on the outskirts of the village in a thickly wooded sacred grove. • To prepare for the shrine, the neem tree, itchli tree, peepul tree, banyan tree and vembu maram, were planted at the site before ayyanar shrine was constructed AYYANAR SHRINE SECTION SINGLE ROOM DWELLING BASKET WEAVING DECK Basket weaving deck Single room dwelling PLAN VIEW BASKET WEAVERS‘ MUD HOUSES FROM CHENGLEPUT KARNATAKA SECTION WEAVER’S HOUSES FROM IKAL • This cluster from Ilkal, Bagalkote district represents an urban settlement pattern and is typical of weavers’ houses in the northern region of Karnataka. • The wooden gateway, stone and wooden window mark the entrance to the Karnataka section are the remnants of a house which was built in the 18th century and belonged to one of the oldest known families in the town. • Almost all houses in northern Karnataka are built of stone. Each area has its distinctive stone.. The colours vary from area to area as does the way the stone is quarried and the preferred shapes and sizes used for construction. In Ilkal, the stone is granite ANDHRA SECTION WEAVER’S HOUSES FROM NALGONDA DISTRICT • Most weavers’ houses and other village houses in Nalgonda and Warangal district follow a style locally known as bhawanti. The plan used commonly is the chitra sala, with three bays or sections and a small courtyard in the middle. The building materials include bamboo reapers, palmyra beams and semi- circular roof tiles. 6
  7. 7. • This was a residence and of work where ikat weaving is done. • Ikat is the technique of dyeing the yarn with patterns before the weaving begins COMMON VERANDAH COURTYARD WEAVING DURRY ROOMS ROOMS KITCHEN BATHROOM AND TOILET COMMON VERANDAH LIVING KITCHEN BATH AND TOILET SECTION CHUTTILLU FROM COASTALANDHRA PRADESH LIVING KITCHEN OUTDOOR SLEEPING AREA SKETCH OF THE CLUSTER PLAN • In a cyclone-prone area, fishermen and agricultural farmers build circular houses which nestle closely to form clusters. • The shape and the positioning help the houses battle against the raging winds. • The house consists of an inner circular room which is enveloped by another circular space that serves as the kitchen on one side and a store at the other end.. • There is also a cooking area or vantasala just outside the house. • The walls were built by the cob wall technique that places balls of mud to make an 18” thick wall. • Palmyra timber was used for rafter, palmyra thatch for the roof and lime wash for the wall finish. • There was a flat mud roof and timber roof under the sloping thatched roof to protect the belongings in case of a fire. KERALA SECTION • The architecture, environment and culture of Kerala stand in marked contrast to that of Tamil Nadu • Unlike the Tamilian, the Keralite prefers to live isolated from neighbours in the middle of a plot of land, with privacy and beautiful tropical vegetation. • In Kerala houses, technique, form and materials are basically the same for all classes and economic levels. Only size or the addition of more buildings to a compound separate the rich from the poor. • Kerala section in Dakshinachitra is punctuated in form by the religious architecture of its three communities - the Hindus, Christians and Muslims. • While the domestic architecture of the three communities is similar, small details such as a cross or a gable distinguish one type from another. PLAN 7
  8. 8. HINDU HOUSE - TRIVANDRUM • This small, middle-class house from South Kerala, belonged to an agricultural family of Nairs, a matrilineal Hindu caste. • The kitchen to this house was a separate structure next to the house. • Wooden structure was representative of houses in southern Kerala, where the building material was primarily timber.. • The manner of joinery and wood used (jackfruit wood and palmyra) was used and was standard in southern Kerala for both the rich and the middle class. • This house was isolated from the other houses with gardens and cow shed was present outside . • Thus ,brining in the feel kerala country side in planning VIEW OF THE HINDU HOUSE SYRIAN CHRISTIAN HOUSE FROM KOTTAYAM • The distinctive feature of the Syrian Christian house was its layout, with the entrance of the house leading directly into the granary. • Prayer area was in front of the granary, identified by the small cross above the door, and not in a separate room for prayers as in a Hindu house. • The addition of a masonry structure, which includes a living room, separate dining room and kitchen, is a sign of the early westernisation of the community and the social trend of entertaining guests in the family home ELEVATION KERALA STYLE ROOF COLONIAL STYLE The British influence is noticeable in the arched veranda which came to replace the graceful curved slatted wooden screens and inside seating which were characteristic of earlier veranda's. OTHER SPACES CHILDREN’S PLAY AREA: • This area were lined with tall trees giving good shade even in the day time • The maintenance of this park area was poor and the installations were not properly maintained. PAVILION AND KALYANA MANDAPA • The pavilion and kalyana mandapa is in chettinadu style with restaurant adjacent to it . • Gable roof are used with mugappu (kerala style) • Columns and doors are of traditional chettinad style CRAFT BAZAAR: • Craft bazaars are present for various artist coming from different parts of india to showcase their products and earn income • This is a permanent structure for temporary artists • Stone carving workshop is found adjacent to the craft bazaar STONE CARVING WORKSHOP 8
  9. 9. ARTISANS COMPLEX • This area was restricted for artisans With guest houses for artisans coming to the village during special occasions • Artisans quarters was present for the workers employed in various activities going on in the heritage village • Activity hut was present for artisans from various parts to exchange their ideas • Craft corner was present for the artisans to merchandise their products and this is permanent market CERAMIC CENTRE ART GALLERY ACTIVITY HUT: • This permanent structure is where students have regular art classes going on to learn the traditional arts • This place was very congested and the classes where much disturbed with the tourist coming to visit the place OPEN AIR FOLK PERFORMANCES: • Open air folk performance area was the first place we see after entering the Dakshinachitra • This place had trees but it was not dense enough to serve as a shelter • People who were sitting here to see the folk performances didn’t seem comfortable because of scorching sun rays in this area. CRAFT SHOP NEAR THE ENTRANCE EXHIBITION AND MUSEUM SPACES Exposition of various professions existed in early times and the tools used by them. Museum showing various religious architecture. Museum was present for textile industry Museum for folk arts were shown in various settlement of different states. MUSEUM EXHIBITING THE VARIOUS AREAS IN A HOUSE LIKE KITCHEN , WORK SPACE , LIVING ROOM ETC.. • Dakshinachitra forms an unique environment to express architecture as a piece of our culture , history and folk arts.. • This gives a prominent idea on the native south Indian architecture • Site planning has enabled the artisans community to live and blend • This is a best example to understand the workmanship possessed by artisans and builders in early time. • This serves as a learning hub for the young generation to know the past, conserve it and grow effectively for future • Inspires the tourists to visit the respective place from where these buildings have placed and to explore their native lands. • Serves as a rich heritage complex which proudly implores the lost glory of art and architecture of south India and throws an insight into people to conserve the past . • This complex has uplifted various artisans who were in a dreadful state due to change in lifestyle which has economically uplifted them and also promoted the art forms. • The entrance plaza would have been in monumental scale. CRITICALANALYSIS: • The ticket counter could have been in a more open space • The construction was with locally available material and hence the maintenance was quite easy and economically viable • The buildings were efficiently planned based on the climatic factors of Chennai viz: orientation , materials etc… but still depicting each state in a most apt way by retaining the most essential elements. • 9

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