Mahendra Raj will be visiting Europe in coming October for a series of events related to the book "The Structure - Works of Mahendra Raj"1
Tuesday 4.10.2016, 18h00 / Zürich ETHZ DARCH
- Introduction: Prof. Annette Spiro. Introduction to the oeuvre of Mahendra Raj: Rohit Raj Mehndiratta and Vandini Mehta
- Panel Discussion: Mahendra Raj, Joseph Schwartz, Johannes Käferstein, Ariel Huber
- Followed by book launch
Thursday 6.10.2016, 18h30 / Lausanne EPFL Archizoom
- Introduction: Cyril Veillon. Introduction to the oeuvre of Mahendra Raj: Rohit Raj Mehndiratta and Vandini Mehta
- Panel Discussion: Mahendra Raj, Aurélio Muttoni, Eric Lapierre, Ariel Huber
Tuesday 11.10.2016, 19h00 / Berlin Architekten- und Ingenieur-Verein zu Berlin
- Joint book launch of “The Structure – Works of Mahendra Raj” + “Chandigarh nach Le Corbusier: Ethnografie einer postkolonialen Planstadt in Indien“
- Introduction to the oeuvre of Mahendra Raj: Rohit Raj Mehndiratta and Vandini Mehta
- Panel Discussion: Mahendra Raj, Bärbel Högner, Ariel Huber
Thursday 13.10.2016, 19h00 / Berlin Technische Universität Berlin
- Introduction: Prof. Regine Leibinger
- Lecture by Mahendra Raj
Friday 14.10.2016, 19h30 / Paris Société Française des Architectes + Librairie Volume, 47
- Book Vernissage + Apéro
Mahendra Raj (*1924 in Lahore, India) is India’s eminent structural engineer. His professional career reads like an architectural history of post-colonial India. After receiving his degree in Lahore he worked as a junior engineer for the Punjab Public Works Department, realizing two of Le Corbusier’s central buildings in Chandigarh, the Secretariat and the High Court. These demanding projects raised his interest in complex concrete structures – and in absence of possibilities to proceed with his education in this field in India, he decided to move to the U.S. where he completed his Master of Engineering in Minnesota. Subsequently he worked in the office of the Swiss bridge expert Othmar Ammann (Ammann & Whitney) in New York, where cutting-edge structures like Eero Saarinen’s TWA Building were calculated at the time.
In 1960 Mahendra Raj decided to move back to India and start his own practice, which would leave a strong imprint in India’s architecture of the decades to follow. In collaboration with some of the finest architects active in India at the time – Charles Correa, Balkrishna Doshi, Raj Rewal, Achyut Kanvinde, Joseph Allen Stein and Louis Kahn to name a few – he was able to realise an impressive oeuvre of spectacular structures, which helped define the architectural language of Nehru’s Modern India.
- 1. The 430-page monograph, published this summer by Park Books Zurich, marks the first comprehensive publication of Mahendra Raj’s oeuvre. It has been researched in close collaboration with the engineer himself and is drawing from the cornucopia of his archive: Hand-drawn plans, calculation sheets and archival photographs from six decades of work explore the 28 featured projects in combination with recent photographs, showing the projects as they appear today.