Ar.Satish Shetty, Arris Architects "Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication"

Satish Shetty

Under the guidance, inputs and supervision of Ar. Satish Shetty who is a co-partner at Arris Architects, almost every alternate week, a new cinema screen project is seen. B.Arch from J.J.Institute of Architecture & Design, Mumbai University, his interests in methods and materials, keep his designs abreast with state-of-the-art approaches and inclusions. He strives to tackle all the details of construction with great precision and truthfulness resulting in successful completion of projects. With more than 100 cinema screens to his credit, he specializes in cinema & theatre designs. He is impressed with Leonardo da vinci saying that "Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication' which emphasizes his principal in life and design.

Though, he did not aspire to be an architect, but got an idea to choose this profession later in his youth when he was just about to apply for his graduations. Before the idea of being an architect was ever considered, he wanted to be a commercial artist as has an interest in drawing and painting since his childhood. It was during his visit to Sir JJ college of Commercial arts after completing his schooling for collecting the information that he came across Architecture as a career option. He says, "During my interaction with the officials of the college, I found that Architecture was not just creative but also analytical and detailed and it challenged me. Being an architect may not be a childhood dream of mine but it is something I've been inspired to become because I wanted to do more than just creative things."

Ar.Satish is a big admirer of Frank Llyod wright & Le Corbusie. He is impressed a lot with Frank Llyod's way of introduction to understand the relation between nature and architecture and also took his concern down to the smallest details. While from Le Corbusier, who is known as an icon of Modernism, he learnt to lay much emphasis to proportions and compositions. He feels that both the architects had a distinct design style, were innovators, experimenting with environment and materials and were constantly challenging the building typology, thus making architecture a response of the times.

Apprising about his firm's way of working he says, "Our approach to design at Arris Architects is a systematic analysis of the client's requirements and logically interpreting these into buildings which are contextual to their surroundings and innovative in its space arrangement."

He adds, "Our design philosophy is a culmination of our experiences and their take aways. My parents and teachers have been quite instrumental in developing and encouraging the creative talent in me. Our vacation travel to the various temples with all its ornamentation in Southern India imbibed the skill of observing detailing. Credit must also go to my teachers and peers at school who always suggested me to try Art as a career. However, it was during our study tour to Chandigarh in my initial architectural college days that reinforced my decision of becoming an architect, after looking at the modern and contemporary structures. The Living being concept behind the city planning along with iconic architecture with the likes of The Secretariat, The High court building, the Open Hand monument and the Assembly building had a huge impact about my belief about good architecture. If 200 cinema screen designs spell out some sort of expertise, then may be, but I truly believe every opportunity is a learning curve."

Reminiscing about his most notable experience he says, "My most memorable experience was when we had completed Atul Goels farmhouse in record time of 90 days both with architecture and interiors. It was our jump start project where we had to execute the house in Delhi and the entire responsibility was bestowed on to us without any kind of support. At that point of time, there were only two of us managing design, drafting, coordination, supervision and execution simultaneously. After the successful timely completion, the encouragement from the clients gave us the confidence that we have finally arrived and can do on our own. Irrespective of the size and quote, your first executed project, which teaches you, multifold, always finds a special place in your heart."

For him, mantras of a successful life are to be creative and pragmatic in design approach. Also he believes that one has to be passionate and obsessed about work and should travel and observe things around him to get an idea. And the most important point is that since life and profession are ever evolving, one has to keep abreast with technology, both in terms of computer and building technology and accordingly adapt to the change.

Though, currently, he is working on a good number of cinema projects, he's looking forward to work on Auditoriums, Institutions and town planning projects in the future.