Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Auroville, Pondicherry

First, a big thanks to Masala Chai for the "You make my day" Award. I really appreciate it and also the post on 'The Dune' which kind of brought back lovely memories from our Pondicherry trip a couple of years back & inspired this post on Auroville:-)) My door obssession in Pondicherry, when I didn't have a digital camera, scanned from old photographs:-) The history of Pondicherry can be traced back to 1672 when the French bought this port town from an India King. The French connection grew when Sri Aurobindo an Indian scholar & mystic set up an ashram here in 1926. Mira Alfassa his French-born spiritual companion, also known as 'The Mother' established Auroville in the sixties.Image of Matrimandir in Auroville.
Auroville is a series of self-supporting communities in villages which are very close to Pondicherry. Auroville's New Age ideal drew many Indians & Westerners including French architect Roger Anger who was the chief architect of the township of Auroville.

Featured here are a couple of homes from Auroville.
A fusion of natural & modern home of Frenchman Jean Legrand & wife Joy.
Natural light streaming in through the circular shapes on the ceiling and that is echoed by the natural rocks & granite slabs in Legrand's bathroom.Love the angular and circular shapes of the kitchen & dining area, which has been designed keeping the light in mind.
Home of designer William Netter, an American Spiritualist and Sri Aurobindo follower.
The white-tiled kitchen with simple modern lines and ample natural light.The design here is Minimalist with areas designated for different purposes. Here is the space for praying with 'The Mother's' and Sri Aurobindo's photographs with a votive candle burning in the centre and his work space.

A house designed by French architect Roger Anger for Christine Devin & her husband in 1976 in a design resembling toadstool shapes.Beautifully designed circular bedroom with movable slats to adjust light & air flow. Love the red-oxide smooth flooring and a simple portrait of the Mother on the wall.Locally made paper lantern and couple of floor cushions & wooden chest adorn the dining area. I absolutely love the shape of the windows ( reminds me of railway train windows:-)

The township at Auroville is heaven for architects from India & abroad trying to create something different, something new. You can read more about the various styles of architecture in Auroville here.

(images from Indian Interiors- Taschen & Auroville.org)

15 comments:

LADY LUXIE said...

How interesting everything looks. Makes me really wish I was there. So pretty and tranquil...

MASALA CHAI said...

And She's back !
;)

Great post, I didn't know all those things even though we had a guide when I went to Auroville two years a ago with family.

I went there again a couple of months ago and the garden-type thing right as you enter had lost some of it's previous glory but was still beautiful nevertheless.

Red River Interiors said...

Rang:..I've been waiting for a post...glad to see you back...
Great shots the nature is beautiful and I love the colors and use of natural elements in the home...Fay

Anrosh said...

I have heard that there is a french town in Calcutta. Is this true or just an hearsay.

Arch at Rang said...

Lady luxie- Thanks:-) Glad you liked it:-)

Powerpuff- :-) Yes, I am back:-))
Glad you liked it:-)

red river interiors- Thanks:-)

anrosh- Yes, there is a French colony near Kolkata called Chandannagar:-))
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chandernagor

shula said...

Funny coincidence. I've just been reading about Pondicherry, Sri Aurobindo, and the Mother.

And here are the pictures!

How marvellous.

vineeta said...

Archana!!! U r back! & how! I loved the unconventional spaces you've featured here & it comes at a time when I've just been thinking of going to Pondicherry. Spoke to Pavitra from Masalachai as well.
Of the pictures you've featured here my favs would have to to be the circular room with the adjustable slats bringing in the light- its pure genius!

Amber said...

What a fascinating post! The photos were lovely and I learned a lot. Very interesting...I'd never heard of Auroville before. Now off to go read more about Chandannagar.

You should do a "door series" with your door photos...maybe mat and frame them? Just lovely.

kavitha said...

Wow archana. I havent been on rang in a while.. i thought you wer enot posting... i come today and see not one but two posts. and one of them on my hometown. how wonderful.
you know growing up there i guess i got so used to the architecture and doors, colours, etc that until I saw all of you taking such lovely pictures I didnt realise it was that different. You know how you dont appreciate whats right in front of you. I am going home for a week's break soon and hope to take lotsa pictures. I especially liked the picture of the dome. I remember from way back when it was not so touristy. and you could go meditate in the hall there.

Arch at Rang said...

shula- Lovely coincidence isn't it:-)? So any trips to India planned yet?

vineeta- Yay! Do tell me when you are going...can let you know some lovely places for ceramic goodies and stuff:-))

amber- Thanks:-)) Glad you liked it:-)
I have this thing for "doors" :-) I actually did a post on the various doors...
http://rangdecor.blogspot.com/2007/06/doorway-to-heaven.html
Do chk it out:-)

kavitha- Thanks:-) Do drop by often...you never know when you'd find something new:-))
Oh! You from Pondi...wow so much to see and treasure...hope you get loads of pics this time:-)

Mélanie said...

Pondichery , is one of my dreame'd trip !!! Well a dream that will come true pretty soon

robyn said...

wonderful post and photographs : )

Neeku said...

Pondicherry... one of my dream destination ! lets see... someday might visit...

Anyways, I really like your blog and really enjoy your post... thought I'd let you know that If you don't mind I have listed you on one of regular links sections. :)

Dilip said...

Auroville is an amazing place to go to.

Jerez said...

What a fun house...great kitchen. Pondicherry, India's grand! Nice blog!