A road to conversation

The journey for ROAD (Room Open for Art and Design) started in 2007 with an architecture professor who wanted his students to aim for something more than just their bookish theories. What started as an animated debate on Tsunami and its after effects, now includes students and professionals from every field who come together every Thursday in search of "enlightenment and knowledge beyond books".

Girish Doshi, the founder for ROAD promotes these gatherings at his own premises. Now the 50-member-strong group religiously attends these sessions at Doshi's Shirole Road premises, inviting people from every field from performing artists, education, history, art and music for these in-depth and informal chats. "I was blessed to have this house in the middle of the city and when my students, who came to learn architecture, asked me for advice on how to deal with stress I was more than happy to conduct such stress-free sessions where everyone just got together to discuss ideas and thoughts and be carefree for at least those two hours in a week," says Doshi.

Ankita Shrivastav, a 4th year student of architecture VITPVC, says, "I have been attending these sessions for over two years now. Its a good way to practice what I learn at college, I learn how to plan and research for my projects. There are so many learned professionals who come and address this gathering. There is so much of knowledge flow and every session that we have is memorable," she says happily.

Every session held has something different to offer, like a session by Parvati Baul, a professional baul singer. Then there were sessions on art where artists talked about their work and even exhibited it there, a session with a a violinist, a flautist and many others who came in at ROAD for the sheer joy of sharing their knowledge with young enthusiasts. "In the latest session of the ROAD held on December 20, a talk by Udayan Indurkar on the gigantic Hindu temples of Cambodia was held and even though it was by a historian, I got to learn about ancient architecture and how it is still standing tall against all odds," says Gaurav Bhagare, an active member of ROAD.

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