In every stage of its long history, the school has renewed the faith in the agenda of change, which can inspire the students to experiment, create and refine their ideas and encourage a process of guided self-learning. The emphasis is on the development of faculties of perception, analysis, assimilation and decision making with the help of both objective information and subjective attitudes based on reasons. Architectural education at SSAA encompasses training in specific skills and exposure to a broad range of issues. Technology and humanities are integrated with design to enhance this process.
SSAA has a reputed tradition of excellence, which is demonstrated in excellent work being done by the alumni in many countries across the globe. The faculty at Sushant School is geared towards developing, in each student, a strong sense of design, planning, technical sensibility and all–round awareness early in their career and endeavours to form many more research and practice alliances in the future.
From its very inception, Sushant has emphasised architecture, problem solving, and creativity in the widest sense possible, and our curriculum continues to do so. One of the schools in India where students begin instructions in construction by laying bricks with their own hands and by cutting wood to make ‘something’ more than just sheets. We are a school that insists on social work and is open to professionals from abroad, industrial visits, experts from other fields and continuous interaction with alumni. We are one of the few schools that has planning studios with live field projects and studios on out of city sites. We are unique in terms of planning programs as we lay equally blend theory and planning field studios.
In all this, Sushant pedagogy still remains about two things: opening minds and getting the basics right. Our students learn to learn, and this is a life-skill that makes them Sushantites for life.
The School prides itself in exploiting cutting edge technology in design education. The modern facilities and digital fabrication equipment, provide students with the latest technology and immersive hands on experience. These advanced facilities promote a highly energetic environment and inspire students to experiment, create, and refine their ideas and encourage a process of guided self-learning. The benefit of learning in such a progressive context is immeasurable.
Through its alumni and faculty linkages, the Sushant School has cultivated associations with a number of international universities such as Oxford Brookes’ University, University of York,University of Melbourne, University of Virginia, University of Montreal, University of British Columbia, and Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece, Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago, The Frank Lloyd Foundation, USA and The Schumacher Institute, Bristol, UK. The school is an affiliate member of the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA), USA. International relationships ensure that SSAA renews its respected status within the world design community.
Teaching design requires insight and perception. It is a mentoring method that has been honed into a specific Sushant tradition, one that goes well beyond the shibboleths that go under design pedagogy. Just as much for their dedication and perseverance as for their proficiency in their field of study, the principal source and key resource for us is our faculty. Sushant is a centre for academic excellence with a hands-on approach to problem solving. Students learn concepts of construction, design, and services by doing. The multifarious nature of the curricula is tackled by placing special emphasis on the trans-disciplinary development of students. Our teaching in all subjects is regularly monitored and is updated periodically to keep up with changing industry demands. By actively promoting its labs, workshops, and research cells the school is able to provide the best environment for picking up valuable professional skills. The world class facilities combined with a highly experienced set of faculty is what keeps Sushant ahead of its competition. The School has a fully equipped workshop with various advanced machines for wood and metal work. These facilities enable the students to translate their ideas into mock ups, prototypes, furniture pieces and different kinds of working models Our laser machines further facilitate the students in executing the varied range of shapes and forms in their regular assignments and thesis projects. The laser machines, the cutting edge technology has increased our ability to test and develop far more complex geometries and forms. This opportunity makes the students more innovative and risk averse which leads to refinement in their work.
Regular visits to building construction sites, galleries, and architectural exhibitions are organized in order to help expose our students to the immediate context that they are engaging with. This helps to increase their understanding of the multidisciplinary nature of architectural practice and the ground reality of any project.
Annual study trips are organised for the students across the years, enabling them to engage, observe and respond to the varying urban or rural contexts that they are exposed to. These have become an integral part of the Trans-Disciplinary Education initiative of the University.
November 2 & 5, 2015, A theatre workshop by Imran Khan ( an actor, director and storyteller) was organised for first year students of Sushant School of Art and Architecture as part of their Design Studio at Ansal University. The intent was to introduce the idea of anthropometrics to understand human body proportions, movements and postures. The workshop aimed at making students understand aspects of space through theater exercises, which introduced them to movements, scale, interpersonal and personal space etc. November 5-6, 2015, A clay workshop “Explorations of Form through Clay” by ceramic artist Divya Dandona was organised for first year students of Sushant School of Art and Architecture to experience materiality as part of their Design Studio. Through the two day workshop students explored the strength, malleability and concreteness of clay and built objects using different techniques, exploring possible forms with clay. April 8-9, 2016, A two day workshop with Architects M S Satsangi and Utssav Gupta explored platonic solids and Icosahedron based dome geometry. A 5.4m 5/8 dome was created out of plastic / pvc electrical conduits joined together with tape and cable ties. Jigs were created for cutting and marking the various members used for creating the dome and the students were exposed to the notion of a jig for repetitive tasks. The initial exploration using paper models exposed the students to frequency subdivisions and geodesic geometry while exploring a full scale model using plastic as a material. April 15-16, 2016, A Tensegrity workshop using twisted steel cable and stainless steel struts was explored over a two day workshop with Architect M S Satsang. Initial models were made in stainless steel scales held together with nuts and bolts which generated the empirical lengths / geometry of the Tensegrity structures that ensued. January 27, 2016, A workshop was organised by C-balance,an indo-swiss sustainability organisation for the faculty of SSAA . The aim of the workshop was to equip the participants with knowledge related to building science, software training to design energy efficient and sustainably cooled buildings that save money for their clients, enhance energy access for underprivileged sections of our society, and reduce carbon emissions.
The Sushant Lecture Series (SLS) is regarded highly within the Architecture community and is slowly gaining character for its variety of discussions. Initiated in 2012, all the lectures organised are free and open to the public and usually enjoy large and enthusiastic audiences. Over the years a dedicated group of faculty and graduate students hosted lectures and readings to showcase the range of architectural, literary and engineering practices to keep the students and faculty informed about the market, innovations and products. The SLS has hosted Hafeez Contractor, renowned and leading architect in the country; Pradeep Sachdeva, architect of famous Dilli Haat; Sanjay Prakash, master in sustainable development; Revati Laul, leading journalist; Mr. Abhishek Somany, Managing director of Somany tiles; Didi Contractor, specialist in mud architecture; Priya Khanna, art passionate; Dikshu Kukreja, Christopher Muller, William O’’Brien, etc.. (others can be noted from the outlook report). Platform Lecture Series (PLS), a unique project at Ansal University, was originally initiated by the SSAA in the academic year 2009-10. Within this project eminent leaders and thought provoking industry stalwarts come together to give insights on contemporary issues in various fields like Architecture, sports, politics, finance & economics, health & medicine, media & advertising etc. This provides a unique platform where students are encouraged to think rationally and imbibe qualities that would enable them to be global leaders. These Platform Lectures on various topics and interests are organised frequently, which sets an informal session between the speaker and students to rationalise the discussion.
- Ar. Hafeez Contractor (Architect): Lecture
- Mr. Rajan Anandan (MD & VP, Google India): Lecture
- Ms. Priya Khanna (Artist): Lecture
- Ar. Dikshu Kukreja (Architect): Lecture
- Ar. Mohit Kumar (Founder of Archade): Workshop/Lecture
- Ar. Karthik Dondeti (Parametric Modeler): Lecture
- Prof. William O’Brien (MIT): Workshop
- Pavan Sukhdev (Special advisor and Head of UNEP
- Rajat Sharma (CEO, India TV)
- Vikram Bakshi (Chairman Ascot Hotels and Resorts Ltd.)
- Dr. Kiran Bedi (India’s First woman IPS Officer)
- Sanjeev Sanyal (Founder Sustainable Planet Institute)
- Matthias Pfeifer (Architect)
- Shriya Malhotra (Urban Researcher)
- Vijender Singh (Boxer)
- Somnath Ray (Architect)
- Mario Botta (Architect)
- Micheal Danino (Historian, Conservationist & Writer)
- Danny Lane (Renowned Glass Sculptor & Furniture Artist)
- Amitabh Kant (CEO and MD DMICDC)
- Ms. Lata Krishnamurty (Senior Advocate, Supreme Court of India)
- Sh. Sunil Kant Munjal (Chairman of Hero MotoCorp)
- Mr. Raj Jain (President, Wal-Mart India & MD & CEO, Bharti Wal-Mart Pvt. Ltd)
- Dr. H.K Chopra, Chief Cardiologist at Moolchand Medicity)
- Mr. Atul Setya (Programme Coordinator, Sushant School of Art and Architecture, Lucknow)
- Prof. Suzanne Ang, (Head Programme Coordinator, Deakin University): Lecture/Workshop
- Prof. John Ruff (Head,Valpario Universtiy US), Lecture during International Conference 2013
- Sachin Bhoite (Urban Planner and Designer, ARUP UK): Lecture
- Dr. Kaarin Taipale, Environmentalist- Urban Sustainability and Related Policy Issues.
- Ms. Shriya Malhotra, Urban Researcher- Maps and Mapping
- Suchitra Deep, Architect, Firm Terra Architects, Bangalore- ‘Practice Matters’ On the subject of professional practice and ‘The Eternal Conundrum’ About translating design intent into practice.
- Ms. Kelleann Foster, Architect & Associate Professor at University of Pennsylvania- Various avenues available for Indian students
- Mr. David Wittenberg, CEO-The Innovation Workgroup
- Mr. Mark F. Hesmann, Work with visionary clients- The Urban Planning-Enabled through Golf.
- Ms. Rasika Mohan and Emma, South Asia Field Officer-Engineers Without Borders Australia
- Mr. O.P. Ratra, Architect-Plastic Architecture
- Mr. Pradeep Sachdeva, Architecture- Contextual Architecture
- Mr. Aditya Kumar – Understanding Informal Settlements
- Mr. Ryan Sequeira, – Paradigms of Urban Design
- Ms. Sabah Siddiqui, Clinical Psychologist, Ambedkar University -Psychology and Space
- Mr. Karthik Dondeti, Thinking with Computational Reasoning
- Mr. Rahul Kumar, Geodesic Domes
- Ar. Dikshu Kukreja, Let’s Get Thinking
- Ms. Priya Khanna, Art and Architecture
- Mr. Jaime de Miguel – New Paradigms in Design and Fabrication
- Ms. Vibhuti Sachdev – Araish for Restoring Monuments
- Mr. Manoj Mathur – Industrial Design for Modern World
- Mr. Sanjay Prakash- Sustainability
- Mr. Stuart Tappin- Structural Engineering in Conservation
- Ms. Didi Contractor- Talk as a part of ‘Forum for Responsible Building’
- Ms. Sunita Sinha- Participatory Architecture
RECENT GUEST LECTURES HELD IN SSAA
DR. IRFANULLAH FAROOQI
April 13, 2016, As part of Special Lecture Series at Sushant School of Art and Architecture, Dr. Irfanullah Farooqi Assistant Professor at the Department of Sociology, Aligarh Muslim University delivered an informative talk on The ‘humane’ side of research and the ‘wonder’ which is there in the act and process of writing it. He focussed on understanding both the long term and underlying consequences of the way essentials of research are generally imparted and highlighted how the doing part of research has, for the most part, a life of its own. Dr. Irfanullah Farooqi Prior to joining AMU he taught at South Asian University and Jamia Millia Islamia. He did his undergraduate studies at Delhi University and his MA, M Phil and PhD at Jawaharlal Nehru University. As someone quite against the rigid boundaries of disciplines he is interested in intersections between different disciplines especially sociology, literature and history. Some of the fields that have sustained his interest for some time now are literature, Modern South Asia, religion, and sociology of education.
April 5, 2016, Sushant School of Art & Architecture organised a Lecture by Ripple Gupta on ‘Planning Policy in UK’. Ripple Gupta has over 10 years’ experience in Urban Planning in different sectors – public, academic, Consultancy, NGO within India and the UK. In her lecture she gave an insight into Local Plan making, Strategic Planning, Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment, Duty to Cooperate, Development Strategy, Public Consultation, Economic Land Availability Assessment, Equalities Impact Assessment and Strategic Environmental Assessment (Sustainability Appraisal).
Febraury 11, 2016, Renowned Architect Fernando Menis shared his thoughts and design process with the students and faculty of Sushant School of Art & Architecture. He has been in practice over 30 years and designed over 60 buildings. He was the recipient of the WAF award for his building – Sacred Museum & Plaza of Spain, Adeje for the year 2015. He discussed his works spanning across urban renewal projects to small scale projects for a community which are internationally acclaimed yet locally relatable. His major projects include multi-functional spaces, public plazas, affordable housing, churches and also government building for the president.
- PETER SCRIVER
January 28, 2016, Talk by Dr. Peter Scriver and Dr. Amit Srivastava on CONSTRUCTING MODERN INDIA was organised at SSAA. Drawing from their newly published book, India: Modern Architectures in History (London: Reaktion, 2015), Peter Scriver and Amit Srivastava will explore how the construction of modern India is, however, an unfinished project in architectural terms, that began long before the independence of the modern state in 1947, and that continues amidst the complexities and contradictions of India’s global present.
- P. S. N. RAO
November 17, 2015, A Special Lecture on “Prospects of Bachelors and Masters in Planning” by Dr. P.S.N Rao was organised. Dr. Rao is currently heading Housing Department in School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi and Chairman of Delhi Urban Arts Commission.
October 29, 2015, as part of Special Lecture Series at SSAA, Canadian Architect John Bass delivered an informative talk on ‘Design Conflict & Chandigarh’. John is an Associate Professor and Chair of the Architecture Program at School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, University of British Columbia and is currently involved in research on Chandigarh’s three contested geographies: Sector and Periphery City; the Capital Complex; and the Landed and Entrepreneurial City. He is in India for 12 weeks joint studio project between CCA, Chandigarh and University of British Columbia, Canada
September 14, 2015 Sushant School of Art & Architecture SSAA organised a Guest Lecture by Sociologist- Planner Virni Agarwal on ‘Sociological Research Methods’ for 4th year B. Arch students then working on their dissertation.