Villa Shodhan - Introduction to Manisha Basu Eight weeks ago I was plunged head first into the most exciting place I have ever been to. It was also the hottest. In Ahmedabad, where I was warmly welcomed by Arthur Duff (of CEPT University), we had an exhibition opening on 3rd April. The exhibition was in CEPT, in the new library which now focuses the campus designed by Doshi. When you are there the voice of the master resounds, the buildings feel like they have and will be there forever, fulfilling their role as inspirational space for teaching.

The historic centre of Ahmedabad is so tightly planned and intense that it can really only be navigated by foot, or by tuk tuk. And as you speed through, it is as if you are in a maze of colour, smell and sound, so intense that you just have to let it roll over you in an Indian wave of brilliance and alchemy. In contrast with this world of stepwells and temples, the section of the city built alternately down and up, are a few key buildings by Le Corbusier who arrived in Ahmedabad in the early 1950s on the back of his commission in Chandigarh.

I had the privilege of visiting Villa Sarabhai and the Millowners Building (beautifully explained in person by Manisha) - both the most phenomenal demonstration of ideas. In college I had drawn them over and over and always felt I was missing a beat. This question was answered when I visited, it was all about the climate and standing there, it all made sense. Manisha Basu is here today to give us as close as we can get in temperate Merrion Square to a tour of the Villa Shodhan. It is not possible to visit this stunning house so it is a true privilege to have Manisha here today to transport us to this world and bring those drawings to life. 

—Ruth O'Herlihy

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