Mysuru, India

2020 Travelling Studio Mysuru, India

Studio Leaders: Blair Gardiner (MSD)

in collaboration with the Wadiyar Centre for Architecture, Mysuru

Applications closed: 07 December 2019


Following its independence in 1947, from the 1950s to 70s India underwent a period of rapid change with the simultaneous reclamation of Indian national identity and the striving for inclusion in the western economically developed world. These forces coalesced in the architecture at the time, which simultaneously sought internationally modern characteristics but with reverence to the distinct Indian climate, cultural modes of occupation and available materials and technologies. With India’s unique structural conditions bound to its demographic, economic and cultural characteristics a challenge is presented to built environment design in formulating response strategies to India’s rapid expansion.

This travelling studio seeks to enquire how designers may offer a contribution in low-income, rapidly urbanising environments. It offers students the opportunity to learn, about India’s modernist residential typologies and the craft/trade-based systems and technologies that were adapted or discarded within a period of architectural transition. The purpose of the studio is to undertake research into a selection of crafts, trades, materials and technologies that supported India’s modernist housing; and to survey, analyse and design/document these to identify if they have a role to play in the contemporary context. It also offers the opportunity to investigate what happened to that industry and whether it is still economically, socially and environmentally possible to design and build utilising local craft/trade-based systems today. A key feature is to recognise the unique context under which buildings are made and the nature of the labour that carries out the task of bringing the design idea into a physical presence. The studio asks students if it is possible to consider the nature of this relationship and if designers have a role to play in facilitating social/technical opportunity and how this opportunity may be integrated into design.

Funding Available:

Participating students will receive a one-off subsidy of $800 from the Faculty utilised towards student’s accommodation costs, be awarded $2050 from the Ackman Trust shortly after the subject census date, and may be eligible to receive a one off payment of up to $1,000 from Melbourne Global Mobility (conditions apply).

Introduction Sessions:

Thursday 24 October 10am in MSD-146
Tuesdays (29 Oct. - 26 Nov.)11am in MSD-408
Thursdays (31 Oct. - 28 Nov.) 11am in MSD-408


Applications closed: 07 December 2019
Pre-Teaching Start Date 16 December 2019 
Teaching Start Date: 13 January 2020
Subject census date: 17 January 2020
Overseas travel dates:  03 February - 14 February 2020 
Teaching End Date: 09 April 2020 
Final submission/presentation: 24 April 2020
OH&S information session: TBC

To Apply:

Applicants will be assessed and selected based on expression of interest, academic merit, design portfolio and interview.

To apply, go to EDSC Travelling Studios page at and click the ‘Travelling Studio Application Form’. Complete all mandatory fields. To complete your application, please also send your portfolio of relevant work to  Please complete your application by 7 December, 2019.

You will be informed of the application outcome via your University of Melbourne email account.

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