Inside Malik Architecture’s art-filled Mumbai Studio

JUN 15, 2018 | By Anchal Kaushal
(L-R) The studio is peppered with artworks and sculptures like the charkha, an old German piece sourced from Mumbai based antiques store Moorthys and the sanyasi sculpture by Mitali Bajaj of Dr Art + Design; Right: The cylindrical powder room in Kamal’s cabin is a separate volume that articulates the interior space through the language of form and material construction. The walls stop short of the ceiling to allow the passage of light through the angled glazing;Standing against the electric blue wall bearing an artwork from B Vithal’s Mitti series, the vibrant Up chair designed by Gaetano Pesce from B&B Italia is the focal point of Kamal’s cabin; Right: On the dumb valet: Miniature chairs from the Vitra factory and a pen from German stationery brand Lamy;Kamal’s workspace in one corner of his cabin is historic with colonial furniture accentuating the setting. The space has a collection of books and features an interplay of light, materials and textures;On the discussion/drawing table, maquettes that are an essential part of the design process, from the building scale to individual blocks; Right: In the reception, a piece from Parul Thacker’s Artchetypes series forms the backdrop for a customised diwan. Specially manufactured, thin Agra bricks left over from a project in New Delhi were used to create the arches.

Located in a historic locale of South Mumbai, this studio has been Malik Architects’ headquarters since 1993. The firm moved here from the old office located at Nariman Point. We were looking for a larger space and it was a stroke of good fortune that someone referred us to the landlord of this building.

The structure with its antiquity and refreshing surrounding greens made it the perfect choice for us. All In The DetailsThe total area of the workspace is approximately 2,800 sq ft with a mezzanine level. The design follows our core philosophy of assimilating and interpreting contextual data pertaining to history, material, light, nature and function.

It echoes the evolving experiences through the gradual accumulation of art and objects, both old and contemporary. I joined the practice in 2005, and while a few things have been moved around since then, the blueprint here predates my influence. It’s been an absolute joy to work with dad (Kamal Malik).

I have never had to work for him, it’s always with him. No two people can ever see eye to eye, that would imply intellectual stasis. In our case, the old adage “fools argue, wise men discuss” holds true. Fostering CreativityOurs is a democratic, non-hierarchical work ethos. I sit outside in the bay with everyone else and dad’s door is always open.

There is a lot of natural light, materials, books and models, all reflecting a deep repository of design, cultural and sociological thinking that we believe is fundamental to our work. There is always ample room for dialogue and discussion