AR. Aabid A Raheem, HEAD OF FACULTY
Aabid A Raheem is Head of Faculty at Avani and brings to the institute, his international and national experience in architectural practices and academia.
A post graduate of The Bartlett at University College London and a graduate from MESSOA Kuttipuram, Aabid has worked with renowned practices such as those of B.V.Doshi, Suhasini Aiyer, Andre Hababou and Spacelab in London.
He has won IIA and IIID Awards for Architecture Writing and Design. He has also published research papers and has presented his work at international and national conferences. Aabid is invited to speak at architecture events in the region as well as a Juror and to do design workshops at other schools of architecture.
He heads [ar&de], an architecture practice in Calicut. His architectural interests cover a wide spectrum, however key areas of research include space syntax based analysis, evidence based design, cities, spatial cultures and architectural theory. At Avani, his personal mission is to make visionary thinkers and designers out of Avani graduates.
Ar. Aditya Nambisan
Aditya completed his graduation in architecture from SIT Tumkur, and has worked with ArijeetRaikar Design Studio, Goa as well as Mathew and Ghosh Architects,Bangalore.An Architect by education and profession, Aditya is a genuine admirer of art and music.He has worked and collaborated with artists at the Kochi-Muziris Biennale, and also worked as an Art interpreter. His current explorations focus on various contemporary art forms, and the relationship between contemporary art and architecture in present times. A believer in interdiciplainary work, he strongly believes that art, architecture and design are inextricably bound to one another in a very interdependent relationship.
MS. Anshu George
Anshu George is a permanent faculty at Avani with a passion for teaching. Having completed her masters in Infrastructure Engineering from PSG, Coimbatore, she has handled various civil engineering related subjects at colleges in Kochi and Pondicherry. She has a keen interest in environmental engineering wherein solutions may be developed to environmental problems in the areas of public health, waste disposal, water and air pollution control. She received the University Gold Medal at bachelors level and also the Best Project Award at master’s level for her thesis on Colour Removal from Textile Effluents using Nano-technology.
Ar. Brinda Varghese
Brinda is a graduate of Bishop Jerome Institute Kollam. She started her career with Architect Thushar Vasudev at Ochre architects, Bangalore, and has also worked at Stapati, Cochin, as well as with Architect Dean De Cruz at Mozaic, Goa. De Cruz’s fearless play with the material palette as well as his romanticization of form to an extend that it almost seems artisticguides Brinda’s evolving architectural philosophy. Her curiosity in people’s perception of and reaction to architectural spaces led her researchpaper, "Psychology of pathways " published in "International Journal of Innovative Research and Development". Brinda also has a zeal for art and acting.
Ms. Fathima Jilna
Fathima Jilna is the Wellness coordinator at Avani who is instrumental in creating a supportive and healthy environment for students. She did her Bachelors in Psychology, English and Sociology from Jyoti Nivas College, Bengaluru. Her passion for Psychology led her to pursue Masters in Clinical Psychology from Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai. Along with providing overall wellness support, she is trained to delivered Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and other evidence-based therapies to students who may face any emotional, behavioural, and adjustment issues. She believes that psychotherapy can help individuals to increase self understanding, improve decision making, to solve problems, and create paths to live the way they want. Apart from Psychology, she is interested in exploring colours and all things that are visually appealing. Her Masters thesis on “Environmental quality of institution and emotional regulation of orphans” explores her interest on the impact of environment on enhancing human emotion
Dr. K A M Anwar, Dean
Anwar is the Dean of Research and Innovation at Avani. He is a Professor of History. With experience in areas of research and administration, he’s committed to ensuring exceptional standards in academic and operational areas.Previously, as the Principal and academic lead he helped build the foundation of the Nilgiri College of Arts and Science in Tamil Nadu. He’s a seasoned traveler and photographer.
Prof.Kerstin Frick, Principal
Born and raised in Germany, Kerstin completed her undergraduate and post graduate education in architecture at the internationally renowned TechnischeUniversity at Berlin, Germany. Herresearch work as student was based in Spain as well as India. She has won numerousprestigious scholarships including the Government of India Scholarship for Research, and the DAAD German Academic Exchange Service Scholarship. As Dean, Kerstin was instrumental in building and heading the architectural post graduate programme for Hindustan University, Chennai.
Over two decades, Kerstin has built a formidable body of architecture and design practice ranging from healthcare design, educational institutions, and residences to name a few. Her designs have been published in national architecture magazines.
She has also headedDevelopment aid projects in Indonesia and Lao PDR and served as consultant architectin developing countries andconflictzones like Afghanistan, Sri Lanka and Nepal.
Kerstin has been instrumental in incubating and building academic programmes nationally. She published on national and International level and travels internationally to lecture on and sustainable design and smart city development.
As Principal, her vision is to expand its activities into new areas, encourage academic research and build exchangeprogrammesfor AVANI’s students.Her aim is to enable young architects to have access to an open minded holistic architectural education with international exposure who are able to respond to the challenges of the future.
AR. Rahul K Sukumaran
Rahul K Sukumaran is a practicing architect and landscape designer, besides being a full time faculty at Avani. He started his career at InForm Architects, Bangalore under Ar.Kiran Venkatesh and has worked at Design Milieu, Bangalore under Landscape Architect Kannan.S. He graduated from College Of Engineering Trivandrum and completed his Masters from CEPT University Ahmedabad. His thesis study for the post graduate program bagged the ISOLA student award 2015 for the best Landscape architecture thesis in India by the Indian Society of Landscape Architects, and the best thesis award 2015 in the Landscape Department at CEPT University. His thesis was also selected for the biennial international graduate project competition, Archiprix 2017.
Ar. Sebastian Joseph
After his graduation in architecture from Sathyabama University, Chennai, Sebastian started his career at Pithavadian and Partners, Chennai in 2011 and joined Blocher Partners India, Ahmedabad in 2016. During his professional practice, he materialized several commercial, institutional, industrial and residential projects spread across different parts of the country. A post graduate in Interior Design and Architecture from CEPT University, Ahmedabad, he has specialized in Indian crafts and Technologies. His research focussed on traditional wooden boat-making craft in India and its adaptability in architecture. He is passionate about furniture making and re-inventing conceptual details in the domain of frugal innovation. At Avani, he is a key member of the team that works closely with first year students as they get their first introductions to architecture. He has a keen interest in model making and miniature sculpting, and routinely takes workshops at art and design schools.
AR. TONY JOSEPH, CHAIRMAN
Tony Joseph graduated from MIT Manipal and completed his masters in design from the University of Texas, Austin, in the Charles Moore program. Interactions and travels with Moore and his views on regional architecture had a strong influence in the direction of Tony's design. He returned to India and started Stapati in 1989, which has steadily grown into a multi-disciplinary practice emphasizing values of integrity, sustainability and innovation.
Ar. Thushara K
Thushara is an Architect and Urban Designer, with a Bachelors degree in Architecture from College of Engineering, Trivandrum and a Masters degree in Archietcture specializing in Urban Design from The University School of Design, University of Mysore.
Her work experience covers a broad range: She has worked with Ar. Sathya Prakash Varanashi at Sathya Consultants Bangalore and has also practiced with internationally renowned firms in Dubai, UAE. She has teaching experience in India and abroad: She has taught at the University School of Design, and at Birla Institute of Technology, Ras-al-Khaimah, UAE.
At Avani, along with academic responsibilities, Thushara is a key member of the faculty team that coordinates a range of workshops and co-curricular activities for students.
Her research interests include various aspects of urban design such as reinstating the essence of city core through reinventing the public realms, sociological study of life and human interaction, humanizing cities and urban landscape. She also has a true passion for performing arts and literature.
Ar. Varun Gopal
Varun is a graduate from T.K.M college engineering , Kollam with a Masters in Architecture from the Politecnico di Milano, Italy. He has worked with Mozaic Design Combines, Goa and NO Architects, Kerala. An alumnus of the “Architecture for Society”program formulated by Architect Aldo Rossi , Varun has been part of multiple state-funded projects across Europe that deal with society, heritage and urbanism: These include the likes of “Riformare Milano” and “Viva la Pompeii”. Apart from his widespread interests in the fields of urban sociology and place making strategies, he is currently researching on the possibilities of landscape urbanism as a “tool and cure” measure to aidsustainable development of Indian cities. Varun also practices architecture and is an associate architect with SOHO architects, Calicut.
Usman earned a BFA and an MFA in painting from Govt. College of Fine Arts, Thrissur, Calicut University and S N School of Arts and Communication, Central University of Hyderabad respectively. A winner of the 2010 and 2012 Kerala Lalit Academy Scholarships, he is an active participant of art projects, residencies and exhibitions. A selected few include “Panthibhojanam” 2017 and “Space and Roots” 2014 camps by Kerala Lalit Kala Academy; Projects include the “Baked Earth” Public Art Project and Terracotta Workshop 2015 at Parudur, Kerala, and “Las Indias” at the 2011 International Theatre Festival of Kerala at Thrissur, Kerala. A selection of his shows include, “What’s wrong with that?” 2008 and the 2010 Kerala Lalit Kala Academy State Exhibition, both at Durbar hall, Cochin, “Ace-thetti-X” 2012 at the M.N.F gallery, Edappally, Cochin, “Contemporary Contingencies” 2014 at Gallery OED Cochin, and “Art @ AVANI” 2016 Group exhibition at AVANI Art initiative, Calicut.
ADJUNCT FACULTY :
MR. Murali Cheeroth
Murali Cheeroth is an internationally acclaimed visual and performance artist and educator who believes in alternative education system. He has worked extensively with possibilities of printmaking, theater, sound and performance art, and now primarily works on painting, video art and performance. His works refer to a wide variety of sources in the cultural sphere and contain within them a deep conversation with the history of representation in visual media, fine art, cinema, music and architecture. His current explorations include the architecture of the city, urbanization and urban cultures. He looks closely at the ideas of re-construction, infrastructure, technology, speed and change, intersections of local and the global, multiple layers of urban identities and so on. Murali situates each work within larger thematic explorations in humanities, social sciences and in visual art media.
A recipient of many prestigious awards including Kerala State Lalit Kala Academy award 1997-98, Kanoria Scholarship for Print Making 1997, highly recommended certificate, Govt. of West Bengal state exhibition 1992, he has also been awarded Junior Fellowship, research in fiber art 97-99, and cultural scholarship (93/95) by Department of Culture, Ministry of Human Resource Development, New Delhi.
He has also taught in School of Architecture and School of Interior Design at CEPT, Ahmedabad, Kanoria Centre for Art, Ahmedabad, and National Institute of Fashion Technology, Bangalore and Chennai. His engagement with this broad range of institutions is evident in his conceptual and figurative concerns. Some of his major exhibitions include ‘Passage to India’ – the New Indian Art from the Frank Cohen collection in UK (2009); Indian Art summit in New Delhi, SH contemporary Art Fair, Shanghai, Chicago Art Fair and London Art Fair in 2010, Indian Art Fair, Colombo Biennale, 2012 & 2016, Chalo India – A group show of Contemporary Indian Artists at Basel Art Centre, Basel, Switzerland, Feb 2014, Hotel Maria Kapel Korte Achterstra at 2a1621 GA Hoorn NL, 2015, Art fair in Torino, Italy 2015, the second International Art Exhibition of the Silk Road, Shanxi Art Museum, China, 2015.
Murali currently spends his days between the cities of Calicut, Kerala - where he teaches at AVANI and heads the Avani Art Initiative and Bangalore where he is engaged with his art practice.
Ar. Nimisha Hakkim
Nimisha graduated from College of Engineering, Trivandrum with a Bachelors degree in Architecture, and completed her Masters in Urban Design from School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi.She is passionate about creating spaces with a fundamental importance to the people who occupy them, and designing cities that speak to their inhabitants.
Nimisha is the Principal Architect and Urban Designer at DAC, with expertise in urban renewal and regeneration, building restoration and architectural design. She is confident in her conviction that design is an evolutionary process and strives to establish this principle as the core of her practice at DAC.
VISTING FACULTY :
Mr. Abraham Kurien
Mr. Abraham Kurien pursued a course of study in the Liberal Arts, topping the Madras University in both BA and MA in English Language and Literature. He served in the Indian Police Service of the Uttar Pradesh Cadre for 36 years with distinction, prior to retirement as Director General of Police in 2005. Honours conferred on him include the Indian Police Medal for Meritorious Services in 1990, the Indian President's Police Medal for Distinguished Services in 2000 and the National Police Fellowship as a research scholar with theSardarVallabhai Patel National Police Academy, Hyderabad in 2001. After retirement from government service, he has handled assignments in administrative, educational and social sectors. He also helped setup the St. Thomas Academy for Research and Training at Calicut (' START') in 2006 for providing early and intensive orientation for higher services, including the Civil Services. Currently he is engaged as Director, AmalJyothi Institute for Civil Services, Kanjirappally and Director National Institute for Development of Youth (NIDY).
Mr. Ashok Raj
Ashok Raj is the Creative Director and partner of Contour Dakshin Architects. He has completed his Bachelors from C.E.P.T University, Ahmedabad and completed his Masters from
Bartlett School of Architecture, London. He is actively engaged in academics as a Lecturer, Visiting Faculty and Juror at various architecture schools in India
Mr. Roshan Rajan George
Roshan Rajan George is a visiting faculty at Avani with a keen interest in architectural sociology – a field that looks into the sociological study of built environment and
explores the changing role of architects in societies with time. He was a guest faculty in NIT, Calicut and is currently a senior architect in Stapati handling hospitality
and residential projects. Roshan completed his B.Arch from NIT, Calicut and thereafter his M.Arch from SRM University, Chennai in 2011.
MS. Sucharita Hota
Ms. Sucharita Hota is a HR consultant and life skills trainer with 21 years experience in the field. A qualitative research consultant with Mars Research, Mumbai for 15 years, she has been involved in research of agencies such as UNICEF and The World Bank. She was the HOD, School of Social Work, St. Josephs College, Devagiri, Calicut for 2 years and faculty for 6 years. Currently she is a consulting faculty at Crest, Kozhikode, formerly known as Centre for Excellence, IIMK. An Honours graduate in Psychology, she completed her Master in Social Work from Tata institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai. She has also completed fellowship programmes in HRD from SLRI, Jamshedpur and AHRD, Hyderabad.
Sujith.G.Sis an architect with a passion for writing, blogging and architectural photography. An alumnus of the College of Engineering, Trivandrum, he began his career as
an architect in Larsen & Toubro where he worked for five years on a wide range of projects. Thereafter, he joined Stapati, where he has been working as a senior architect.
He has recently authored his first book, 'Timeless Resorts', a monograph on Stapati's hospitality projects. He is a regular contributor to various architectural publications
and has been a guest jury member for several architecture schools in Kerala. A visiting faculty at Avani, he is presently researching about a monologue on Laurie Baker's
architecture. He shares his perspectives on architecture and design through his blog, 'Architecture Student's Corner.
Ar. Soumini Raja PhD.
Soumini Raja brings a deep interest in complex human-nature relationships and their process of co-evolution, especially in coastal regions. She is the founding partner at Studio Commune, a collaborative design studio in Trivandrum, that engages in meaningful conversation between practice, research and activism. An alumnus of College of Engineering Trivandrum with a Masters in Urban and Regional Planning from CEPT University Ahmedabad, her doctoral research at CEPT was a socio-spatial investigation of “Human vulnerabilities to disasters in coastal areas - A case of Chellanam”. She has worked with various institutions such as EPCDPM, Gujarat Institute of Development Research, CEPT Research and Development Consultancy, and College of Architecture Trivandrum. In practice, she attempts to see design beyond the linear narrative, and as an on-going process encompassing dialogue and negotiation between society, culture and built environment. She has published various peer-reviewed papers and serves as juror at various institutions. She is also a consultant Urban Planner at IL&FS Townships and Urban Assets Limited and an active member of Architecture Sans Frontiers India.