Drawings by C. Anjalendran | Texts by David Robson
Photographs by Dominic Sansoni
280 x 260mm
Hardback; 240 pages
Pub Date: August 2015
BIC: AMX, AMV
Architect C. Anjalendran, aided by an army of assistants and students, has been recording Sri Lanka’s architectural heritage for almost 30 years. The result is a collection of exquisite measured drawings, all made with ink and pencil on tracing paper — documenting many interesting and often neglected buildings in Sri Lanka. This book features these, along with photographs and insightful text, to highlight a broad cross-section of buildings of many different types and from many periods — from the ancient classical era of Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa, from medieval times, from the colonial period and from the years after Sri Lanka regained its Independence in 1948. A celebration of Sri Lanka’s rich architectural heritage and of the art of drawing, the book continues the work of Barbara Sansoni who started to record ancient buildings during the early 1960s. With the help of her husband Ronald Lewcock, her photographer son Dominic Sansoni and her friend Anjalendran, she published her drawings in a book called ‘The Architecture of an Island’ in 1998. It is therefore fitting that Dominic Sansoni has joined Anjalendran as the photographer for the present volume. Texts are by David Robson who was Anjalendran’s tutor in the early 1970s and who published a monograph on his work in 2009.
Over the past two decades Anjalendran has established himself as one of Sri Lanka’s leading architects. Born into a family of Jaffna Tamils and a student of the prolific and influential Geoffrey Bawa, Anjalendran’s buildings are known for their simple directness, modern spirit, and acknowledgment of the rich vernacular traditions of Sri Lanka. His studio has provided all the detailed and varied drawings in this book.
Based in Sri Lanka with an intimate knowledge of the island, its people, culture and architecture, Dominic Sansoni likes travelling with no agenda. His photographs enliven the pages of this book, adding another dimension to the drawings.
An author, architect and professor of architecture, David Robson has a long history with the island of Sri Lanka. After studying at the Bartlett School of Architecture in University College London, David Robson was Senior Lecturer in the Colombo School of Architecture from 1969 to 1972. In the early 1980s he worked as a planning adviser on the Sri Lankan government’s “Hundred Thousand Houses Programme” and was responsible for the masterplanning of the new town of Rampokunagama. He has written a number of books — on low-cost aided-self-help housing and housing for the elderly; a comprehensive monograph on Sri Lankan architect Geoffrey Bawa (2002), followed by two further books on Bawa; and a book on the life and work of Sri Lankan architect C. Anjalendran.