There was a time when structure was an alien time period to most individuals in Kerala. “It was thought-about to be a job whereby an individual was known as in to ‘beautify’ a home, to make it look fancy,” remembers Professor Oommen Thomas, a graduate of the primary batch of the Division of Structure at School of Engineering Trivandrum(CET), after the screening of Behind the timber, a documentary, at CET.
Right now structure is way in demand as a occupation and a course for learning. However Professor Oommen’s son and architect Thomas Oommen believes there has by no means been an try to check or focus on publish-independence modern structure of Kerala. The documentary Behind the timber that he directed alongside along with his good friend Prahlad Gopakumar, a school at movie and communication division at Nationwide Institute of Design, goals at filling that gap.
“Each time we speak of modern structure, it's primarily based on cities like Delhi, Mumbai and Chandigarh. However there have been quite a few architects in Kerala who had been propagators of modernism. J.C. Alexander, who was the founding father of the structure course at CET and the Chief Architect of presidency of Kerala throughout late 50s and 60s, was certainly one of them,” says Thomas.
Prahlad and Thomas had been schoolmates at Loyola College and it was throughout certainly one of their conferences in 2015 that they determined to begin engaged on a documentary, primarily based on the analysis that they've been doing on modern structure in Kerala. Speaking to us over cellphone, Prahlad provides, “It's unhappy that few individuals learn about an individual like Alexander who designed a considerable portion of presidency buildings throughout the state like Tagore Theatre, Authorities Medical School and civil station buildings in a number of districts.”
Footages from the discussions Thomas and Prahlad had with a number of senior architects, together with Prof. Oommen kind the majority of what's within the documentary. Though a journey by means of the life and work of the senior Oommen, Behind the timber, in reality, traces the historical past of modern structure motion in Kerala.
So viewers are handled to slices of details about figures like Alexander and Laurie Baker as properly. These phenomenons which have formed modern structure in Kerala by means of the many years, like modern literature, political actions and breaking apart of joint household idea to make means for nuclear households, too discover a house.
Behind the timber additionally goes past a normal reminder to the modernist motion and supplies a glimpse into the early days of structure in CET that has one of many oldest structure departments in South India. “I took civil engineering in CET after ending B.Sc.
It was throughout my second 12 months, in 1964, an unbiased structure course was began with the trouble of Alexander sir, and a few of us modified programs. A lot of the college had been PWD workers who had been half-time academics,” remembers Prof. Oommen. In 1971 Prof. Oommen joined as a lecturer within the structure division in CET and then turned it’s first head of the division in 1980.
Prof. Oommen all the time discovered time to do his personal initiatives that concerned homes, church buildings and authorities buildings. Lakshmibai Nationwide School of Bodily Training (LNCPE) constructing at Kariyavattom, structure division constructing at CET and the massive extension to the Publish Grasp Normal’s workplace at PMG are among the works executed by Oommen.
The documentary which was screened in each Kochi and Thiruvananthapuram will, finally, be uploaded on YouTube. Earlier than that it'll journey to movie festivals and structure-primarily based competitions.