Shilpa Architects

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Shilpa Architects
Shilpa Architects Planners Designers Pvt Ltd (logo).jpg
Official logo
Practice information
Key architects Sheila Sri Prakash
Pavitra Sri Prakash
Founded 1979 (1979)
Significant works and honors
Buildings Cholamandal Artists' Village
Mahindra World City, New Chennai
Awards 2003 DesignShare
2002 Builder's Association of India

Shilpa Architects is an international architecture, design and planning firm that was founded in 1979 in Chennai, India by Sheila Sri Prakash.[1] The firm was established as a proprietary firm and is the first architecture firm that was founded independently by a woman and has been continuously operated in India.[2][3] It currently operates offices in Chennai, Bangalore and Mumbai, in India and in New York City and Chicago in the United States and provides urban design and master planning services. The firm's designs can be seen at Cholamandal Artists' Village, Mahindra World City, New Chennai, Paranur on GST Road and it is known for its work inspired by sustainable vernacular architectural practices as well as a sensitivity for society[4] and the built-natural environment.

Sheila Sri Prakash currently serves on the World Economic Forum's Global Agenda Council on Design Innovation, as one of 16 leading experts from around the world that have been called upon to devise plans to improve the state of the world. She received her architectural degree from the Anna University School of Architecture and Planning in Chennai and completed an Executive Education program at the Harvard Graduate School of Design.[5] She was also an International Fellow of Architecture at Ball State University in Muncie Indiana for her scholarly work on Indian Art, Architecture and Vaastu : The Indian Art of placement or Vastu Shastra.[6] Since its inception, the company has grown to over 80 professionals and has operations across India and in the USA. The firm's designers have been invited to speak at several national and international forums[7] such as the Confederation of Indian Industry.

Shilpa Architects was instrumental in the institution of the Indian Green Building Council and continues to remain a member of that organization.[8] The firm is known for designing planning and architectural solutions that cater to the millions of underprivileged by delivering shelter through low-cost, durable, mass-construction techniques. In 1987 - the year of "Shelter for the shelterless" by the Shelter programme in Tamil Nadu state,[9] the firm was invited by the Tamil Nadu Slum Clearance Board, Madras Metropolitan Development Authority and the World Bank to prototype a model that has since been adopted successfully in a large-scale format across Tamil Nadu and India.[10] Sheila Sri Prakash holds patents for innovative designs in structural and architectural elements for low cost yet improved quality of construction.[11]

In 2003, Designshare awarded Shilpa Architects a Recognized Value Award for its innovative design for educational infrastructure.[12]

In 2008, the firm received the IAD Award.[13]


Shilpa Architects has recently been called upon to restore some of India's archaeological treasures as one of the country's select few experts in architecture, design, restoration and preservation by the Archaeological Survey of India.[14]


The firm has diversified with subsidiaries in the investment & asset management space - through Nirmana Investments Pvt Ltd which was founded by Bhargav Sri Prakash - and in turn-key interior fit out solutions - through Stone Lotus - and delivers architectural designs internationally through an overseas subsidiary.

Pavithra Sri Prakash has recently been inducted into the Board of the company and is an Architect and Urban Designer by profession. She received her undergraduate degree in Architecture from the Anna University School of Architecture and Planning in Chennai and completed her graduate degree[15] in Architecture and Urban Design from Columbia University in New York.

The company recently inducted Amrit Sahasranamam as the Chief Financial Officer. Amrit Sahasranamam has an undergraduate degree in Computer Science[16] from the Illinois Institute of Technology and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Chicago.[17]

Reciprocity Wave[edit]

The Reciprocity Wave, a program conceived by Sheila Sri Prakash, is a sculpture competition where students create art work with recycled materials to highlight social and environmental issues. Shilpa Architects have conducted three such initiatives, two in Chennai,[18][19] and one in Bangalore.[20][21] and one in Cubbon Park, Bangalore.[22]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Women Leaders at Work Series". The Wall Street Journal. 10 December 2013. 
  2. ^ Tilly Sweet (July 2016). "10 of the Most Influential Female Architects (pg 26)". Construction Global Magazine. 
  3. ^
  4. ^ "Learn from rural architecture". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 2009-08-21. 
  5. ^
  6. ^ "Plans in place for Focus on Asia Week". 2002-01-29. Retrieved 2010-12-14. 
  7. ^ "CII" (PDF). Retrieved 2010-12-14. 
  8. ^ [1] Archived September 13, 2009, at the Wayback Machine.
  9. ^ "Shelter programme in Tamil Nadu state". Building and Environment. 26: 277–287. doi:10.1016/0360-1323(91)90051-c. 
  10. ^ "Integrated Urban Projects: Experience in Ecuador, India, and Brazil - Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) - The World Bank Group". Retrieved 2010-12-14. 
  11. ^ "Microsoft Word - inventors_of_india_2006.doc" (PDF). Retrieved 2010-12-14. 
  12. ^ "Chengelpet Elementary School : DesignShare Projects". Retrieved 2010-12-14. 
  13. ^ [2] Archived November 15, 2009, at the Wayback Machine.
  14. ^
  15. ^ "Urban Design Studio II 2003: Urban Design in an Expanded Field | GSAPPonline". Retrieved 2010-12-14. 
  16. ^ Archived from the original on October 15, 2008. Retrieved December 3, 2009.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  17. ^ Chicago GSB. "Chicago GSB Alumni Weekend 2005". Retrieved 2010-12-14. 
  18. ^ Express News Service (5 March 2013). "Reciprocity Wave art competition". The New Indian Express. 
  19. ^ Chief Correspondent (11 March 2013). "Artistry flourishes in Reciprocity Wave's second venture". Chennaionline. 
  20. ^ Nandini Sundar (2 October 2013). "Being the change". The Hindu. 
  21. ^ DHNS (2 October 2013). "When Creations from Castaways Had Messages". Deccan Herald. 
  22. ^ Event Images, Reciprocity Wave at Cubbon Park, Bangalore

External links[edit]