With just two desks in a 100sq-ft office, and armed “with a lot of passion,” Noshir Talati started his practice over 50 years ago . As a young architect, he had a simple aspiration (“I didn’t really envision too much”). He desired to work hard and create a design repertoire that would speak for itself. “Life and hard work have got me to where I am today. In the beginning, the projects were small and mostly interior projects. A few people gave me a chance and let me show them what I was able to create and deliver. In India at that time, there was no professionalism — either [from] the trade or the contractors,” shares the architect about the odds he had to brave.
As the practice evolved, Talati had to hire more people and, over time, these “immensely talented” colleagues became his partners. Now, the atelier rests on the shoulders of six partners and over 20 associates who oversee interior and architecture works in the fields of education, healthcare, hospitality, residential and commercial spaces spanning the entire country. The firm grew in size and reach, but it didn’t change TPA’s rather simple design philosophy is governed by the classic dictum of ‘form follows function’. “We will always design keeping the functionality of the project in mind. We approach the design in a practical way, by paying close attention to the details and the durability, allowing [our] creativity to organically grow as the project evolves,” says Talati, who prefers authentic designs that are simple, elegant and practical, over theatrics.
A humble beginning and an equally humble approach to work didn’t stop TPA from a being a sought-after firm in the country. The alumnus of Academy of Architecture, Mumbai and University of Michigan hopes that the company continues to be involved in projects across the country while never losing sight of its culture of hard work and core values of quality, practicality and durability.
“The world has changed since I was a young designer. There is so much exposure and so many new materials, styles and possibilities now. I would suggest that younger architects stay true to their design and [keep] away from fads that come and go.
“For a true and usable space, always think of the user first and never compromise on quality and detail,” advises Talati.

Looking Back

TPA’s first architecture project was Cadbury House on Peddar Road. “It is unfortunately being redeveloped decades later. But it was the first landmark architecture project that changed the scale and the optics of the firm. After that, I received so many architectural projects and things grew from there,” says Talati.

Looking forward

“There are so many that we are working on, it wouldn’t feel right to single out any one in particular. At TPA, every project is as exciting and as important as the next,” insists Talati, like many of the other architecture and design firms we have featured. And they remained resolute in not citing any particular project.

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