Further articles to the issue DETAIL 1+2/2019 are available here.
Place of worship: Tejorling Radiance Temple by Karan Darda Architects
Architect: Karan Darda Architects
Location: Pune, Maharashtra (IN)
The small temple by Karan Darda Architects in the city of Pune, western India, stands on a small concrete plinth in the heart of a small orchard, its presence solely announced by a small brick wall marking the entry to the area. The temple is located to make it easy for workers and passers-by to drop in for a moment for prayer or inner reflection.
In its lower part the Tejorling Radiance Temple is square in basic shape and is crowned with a triangular roof made up of five surfaces tapering into a point at the top in chimney-like manner. A special feature has been added at one of the temple's corners, where a second volume consisting of a simple block that continues into a long boundary wall juts inwards below the roof of the main volume. A gap has been left between the two volumes to admit air and light into the interior. All walls are built solely of clay bricks with a reddish-orange colour, giving the temple a tasteful look and carefully embedding it in the vegetation, yet also making it stand out clearly in contrast.
The entrance is placed at the interstice of the two volumes. Contrary to the usual conventions in the religion, the sanctum is not contained within a pillared hall but is placed right inside the main volume with its tapered roof, making this sacred inner chamber immediately accessible when the Hindu temple is entered. The smaller volume, which offers space for meditation and inner reflection, is directly reached from this prayer room.
With their small ensemble Karan Darda Architects have managed to show respect for the basic values of Hinduism in a modern architectural interpretation. This approach has been embodied in an accessible way, making Tejorling Radiance Temple a congenial place for taking time out from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.