Indian architecture practice Studio Array has used hand-woven bamboo screens to wrap this home and artist’s studio in Delhi, which incorporated existing foundations and columns.

Called Farm 8, the project was designed for a collective of artists exploring a sustainable, waste-free method of living known as permaculture, to be used as both a residence and a site for public engagement programmes.

Exterior of Farm 8 artist residence by Studio Array
Studio Array has created a home and artist’s studio in Delhi

A previous attempt to construct a building on the site had left foundations and columns in place. Drawing on the no-waste approach of permaculture, Studio Array’s starting point was to integrate these into the new design.A lightweight structure of black steel, infilled with woven bamboo, encloses the existing columns, creating a cluster of mono-pitched volumes surrounded by an expansive garden.

Building wrapped in bamboo screens
Farm 8 is wrapped in hand-woven bamboo screens

“Almost a decade ago, the clients intended to use the site as an artist’s studio space for themselves – foundations and columns were thus cast at the time, unfortunately the on-site work was stalled for unforeseen reasons,” explained Studio Array.“The artist’s residency caps and envelopes the old structure while creating a structural contrast by intervening with lightweight steel, glass, bamboo and wooden drywall construction.”

Indian artist residence by Studio Array
It was designed for a collective of artists

Two bedroom blocks to the east each contain a pair of bedrooms separated by a bathroom, with areas of the woven bamboo screens opening out onto a mixture of semi-enclosed and open brick-paved patios and gardens.Studio workspaces and a kitchen sit to the west, illuminated by windows in the high, pitched roofs and areas of full-height glazing that create a close connection to the garden.

“A weave between the old and the new, the outdoor and the indoor and the public and the private became the paramount idea,” said the studio. “Emulating the experience of sitting under a tree, semi-open spaces were carved out of the existing column grid structure to offer a sense of protection, without creating enclosures.”
Courtyard space at Farm 8 by Studio Array
The material palette is defined by simple materials
The material palette, both inside and out, was defined by simple, raw materials that will weather over time, bedding into the garden and surroundings.

As well as the bamboo screens, which create a permeable, translucent shell for the building, continuity from the outside to the interiors was created with plastered walls, concrete floors and exposed steel frame ceilings.

Studio at Farm 8 in Delhi
Exposed steel-framed ceilings feature inside

“The bamboo screens will age and change colour over time, as an ode to the unforgiving ageing process, mimicking and inviting nature to take over for years to follow,” said the studio. “The brick flooring sans mortar used in the semi-open pavilions is also designed to age and desaturate with time, with the possibility of allowing grass, weeds and the landscape to enter the built space.”

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