Author Siddharth Dhanvant Sanghvi creates a calming cocoon for actor and philanthropist Lisa Ray
DEC 24, 2018 | By Lisa Ray
I’m an instinctivist: The moment I stepped into Siddharth’s house in Goa, I knew in my gut I had to work with him on an apartment my husband and I had recently acquired in Bandra, Mumbai. His abode was aesthetically pleasing, with all cement floors and flaring ceilings. But there was a different quality that drew me..a deep, abiding quietness, almost monastic, but with corners of sharp relief. This was the spirit of design I was seeking. Humble, local materials shaped in beautifully understated, original ways. Pure alchemy. Ever since I overcame cancer I return to this very quietness, through meditation, writing or even the spaces I inhabit. Siddharth was clear that he “did not do design”. His approach to my place, around 2,500 sq ft, would be a literary one, the style derived out of conversations. In essence, he said his form was the narrative, and the condo would tell my story of how light is unassailable, and conviction and hope may triumph over almost anything. My recovery was also a way to live life more fully, and in a deeper experience of my truth of the time: I wanted my home to reflect this. I know I should talk about the design elements we collaborated on including the way we opened out three rooms into two. I can reference the layout’s simplicity, which reminds me of my own time spent in monasteries in California or ashrams in India. Or perhaps, I should highlight the dramatic vista of a forest on the wallpaper we imported from Paris (Siddharth had used it on a site outside Rome, which I was in thrall of). I should mention the furniture we sourced from Rajasthan, which I didn’t even feel the need to embellish. Or the sole piece of art we selected from a lifetime of collecting, a Souza nude. But mostly, it is a place of sanctuary..a space to heal, recover and give shape to what Irish playwright Samuel Beckett once said, “I can’t go on. I’ll go on”.This apartment, among other things, is my going on. I’m so glad that when my husband and I come home, we know in our bones that we have, truly, come home.