An architectural lego? Material Immaterial Studio reveals the beauty of built with its collectible-worthy creations
JAN 10, 2024 | By Krupakshi Mehta
In life, the tangible often transforms into a canvas for the intangible. Concepts like emotions, memories and imagination make their way out into the physical world through the seen. This symbiotic relationship doesn’t merely paint the canvas of the present, it projects the limitless possibility that arises when the material and immaterial engage with each other.
An embodiment of this concept is Material Immaterial Studio by Nitin Barchha, a trained architect from Academy of Architecture, which builds on the beauty of materials through the lens of architecture.
The studio’s recent collections, also showcased at 47-A design gallery in Mumbai’s neighbourhood of Khotachiwadi, Sanctum and Re-Cast, epitomise this fusion of material, immaterial and function!
Blurring boundaries with Re-Cast
Challenging conventional distinctions between art and design, Re-Cast embodies the evolutionary nature of Material Immaterial. A collection of nine magnificent step wells, the series comprises individual blocks of concrete, cast to resemble architectural fragments, placed individually or in a group. Conceptually, Re-Cast deals with memories of built spaces and the often fragmentary nature of recollections.
Each object in Re-Cast is composed of elements that come together to form a multipurpose setting. They can be stacked vertically as totems or horizontally to create furniture pieces, from side tables to dining tables. This flexibility encourages creative exploration and customisation, allowing individuals to shape their own narrative within the spaces they inhabit.
The composition of each object unfolds new possibilities, exploring the dynamics of voids and solid forms. Some staircases lead nowhere, leaving room for interpretation, while others leave a subtle hint, sparking curiosity about the spatial arrangement.
The incompleteness of each object, makes one engage in a dialogue with their surroundings.
Miniature marvels of Sanctum
Inspired by the grandeur of step wells, Sanctum takes inspiration from the architectural history and pays homage to the engineering brilliance and holistic essence of stepwells. This series goes beyond replication. Here, shadows and textures converge, celebrating the architectural spirit of these marvels on a miniature scale.
Sanctum fosters a connection between the viewer and the rich architectural tapestry of the past. It stands as an attestation to the studio’s commitment to preserving and celebrating architectural heritage through the lens of contemporary art.
In the mix of the tangible and the intangible, Material Immaterial Studio’s Re-Cast and Sanctum break boundaries, sparking a conversation that blends history and modern expression.