A temporary Temple Pavilion by Abin Design Studio

January 22, 2015

Inno-vision Factors:

The pavilion was built for a local socio-religious festival. It was a temporary structure to shelter an idol which was to be the focus of this festival. Set amidst a carnival atmosphere, the constant flux of people was a factor considered while conceptualizing its design. A notion of continuous movement was its guiding principle.

The initial idea was to create a composition of light and colour to convey implied movement while creating playfulness. The use of coloured LED lights was considered to achieve this. However, being a community project, funds were limited while volunteers were aplenty. The cost was limited to INR 75,000. Due to the restricted budget, an innovative alternative was developed to achieve a similar effect. A rising circular volume was visualized, emphasizing the focal idol while directing movement around the pavilion in a manner to create a journey of ever-changing views. Gliding sight-lines across a coloured spectrum were envisioned for the desired effect of movement among, between and above the elements of the pavilion.

Locally available bamboo cut to specific lengths was used to create a gradually rising volume. These were rooted to the ground in a regular grid and were painted in spectral hues. Close to 1800 bamboo poles were arranged according to their lengths ranging from 2 feet to 15 feet. These were manually sorted and grouped lengthwise. Each group was then assigned one of 15 colours that were painted over each pole. Each bamboo pole was meticulously catalogued based on its length, colour and position. These were carefully tagged and stowed awaiting their sequential fixing into the ground. Retro-reflective vinyl stickers were pasted at the top of each bamboo. Coupled with hired halogen lights, the stickers gave the pavilion the desired glowing effect.

The final outcome was one of bright playful colours in a celebratory atmosphere by day and added unconventional festive lighting by night. An explosion of vivid colours seen from afar led one’s eye towards the pavilion. It created a sense of curiosity as one was drawn by this unusual set-up. On moving closer, some elements became evident while others continued to intrigue. Gradually, the materials unfolded, transforming the sense of curiosity to that of wonderment. The various views that could be achieved from around the installation rendered the pavilion dynamic and vibrant.

Bamboo, being durable, bio-degradable and locally available, was a strategic choice of material for the project. The poles were planned for reuse after the festival and were carefully re-catalogued and stored for the future. They have currently found use as decorative fencing for the football field of the same community.


Name, Location and size of Project:

Name: A temporary Temple Pavilion

Location: Hooghly, West Bengal

Size: 1600 sqft.

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