Wadeshwar Temple by Sameep Padora and Associates 04.08.11

SPA-SHI-0027

Ancient and modern collide in a temple at Wadeshwar, western India, by Mumbai practice Sameep Padora and Associates.

The timeless stone structure is half perched on a seamless timber-lined metal box that punctures its base, forming a sleek entrance to the inner sanctum and framing the lake beyond. With a nimble economy of means, the architects have used subtle interventions in the landscape to hint at the traditional elements of a temple. The surrounding trees evoke a pillared "mandapa" hall; fragments of basalt wall steer devotees on to the east-west axis of the entrance.

Amphitheatre steps are carved into the southern end of the site, transforming this religious space into a socio-cultural meeting ground, now regularly used for festivals and local government meetings.

The temple was built through a process of "shramdaan" (self-build) in which the priest and local villages were involved in both the design and construction. "We wanted it to be an indigenous product," says principal and founder Sameep Padora, who sourced the laterite stone from a nearby quarry and found local metal trunk manufacturers to produce the galvanised iron cladding.

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Image

Edmund Sumner

 

Words

Oliver Wainwright

quotes story

The timeless stone structure is half perched on a seamless timber-lined metal box that punctures its base, forming a sleek entrance to the inner sanctum and framing the lake beyond

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