ART AT NAKASHIMA: The “Golconde: Introduction of Modernism in India” reception and exhibit will be held at the Nakashima Foundation Arts Building in New Hope, Pa., on June 12. (Photo by Komal Sharma)
“Golconde,” a hidden gem and a treasure in India’s architectural history located in Pondicherry, has a special connection to the work and life of George Nakashima. As Nakashima shepherded the construction of the building, he was awakened to a higher consciousness which changed the course of his life forever, enabling him to manifest Karma Yoga in his own unique way — both in architecture and in furniture making.
The Nakashima Foundation will host a special “Golconde: Introduction of Modernism in India” exhibit and reception at the Nakashima Foundation Arts Building on Sunday, June 12, from 3 to 5 p.m. on the Nakashima property at 1847 Aquetong Road, New Hope, Pa.
“Golconde” itself is not open to the public — it remains a private sanctuary — a home for some of the residents who are members of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram. This exhibit invites visitors to experience virtually its beauty and tranquility, as well as to learn about the story of its creation.
The “Golconde” exhibit was inaugurated at the University of Texas in Austin, then traveled to Chicago, Arizona, Seattle, and Virginia before arriving in New Hope. It is a glimpse into the “discovery” of “Golconde” by Pankaj and Christine Gupta, founding partners of VirMueller architects in Delhi in 2003. They discovered a building with an atmosphere of peace and beauty remaining intact since it was completed during World War II.
For the exhibit, the Guptas created a series of full-scale color prints on fabric, hung so that observers are immersed in a three-
dimensional sense of the remarkably beautiful spaces and forms. During their research and documentation, they were allowed unprecedented access to the Ashram archives, unearthing archival photographs and reproducing the original architectural drawings to illustrate the conditions that led to the creation of “Golconde.”
The Guptas have just published the second edition of their book, Golconde – The Introduction of Modernism in India, which is available for $50 at nakashimawoodworkers.com. Golconde is the story of Antonin Raymond designing the very first Modernist reinforced concrete building in India and how it changed the course of George Nakashima’s life.
Tickets for the open reception and exhibit are $150. For those not attending the opening reception, “Golconde” exhibit viewing tickets are $25 on select Saturdays by reservation only. Visit nakashimafoundation.org to purchase.