This is the main façade of the Writers’ Buildings (WB), the administrative Headquarters of the State of West Bengal (WB).
‘Writers’ were junior clerks in East India Company. They used to stay in mud shanties within the boundary of the old Fort in Calcutta. In 1695, when the mud shanties were destroyed by severe thunderstorm, a new one-storied brick structure was erected in 1705. This building was named as Writers’ House.
As per requirement, the size started increasing in length and height. Within 100 years, it became a huge building with 19 sets of identical apartments and 57 sets of identical window-blocks and a flat roof.
But this was ‘Company’ style architecture. It stressed more on ‘utility’ rather than on ‘Form’.
So, when power of the British Crown increased in supervision of Indian affairs, the huge building, once classical in style, was transformed to create a Victorian impression - complete with terracotta dressings, dummy portico and pediment, with a Corinthian façade.
The red surface of exposed brick was part of this make over.
According to a renowned architect, this is a “Neo-Renaissance style of architecture, with French accents, such as the mansard roofs. This was a style quite common in the late 19th and very early 20th centuries. There are a number of buildings in other parts of Britain’s former empire that adopt this style - such as the town halls in Sydney and Bendigo (Australia) and Cape Town (South Africa), to name but a few”.
The current main building is 235 yards in breadth and encompasses nearly 3 acres of land.
It is interesting that the “Writers’ Buildings” has 12 addresses because the complex contains 12 four-storied buildings in 10 acres of land.
Very recently, the State Government has decided to refurbish this great heritage complex.
All the ministers (including the Chief Minister herself) and their secretariats have been shifted to other buildings.
Critiques | Translate
serp2000 (41316) 2013-12-25 9:47
Wow! Thanks, Alekhya, for so interesting presentation of the local architecture in West Bengal. Although this building reminds me some houses in Mumbai. The same British heritage, I like your work, perfect sharpness. Well done! Best wishes,
Subhogen (4067) 2013-12-25 9:50
Fabulous view of THE most important building.
A symmetrical and balanced composition.
I like the architecture, and the details are more prominent because of the contrast between the red and ivory colors and your excellent DOF. Superb colors, clarity and soft light. You could have tried a different more interesting POV, but this is also good for reportage photo.
Very good presentation with such a well researched note.
Good to see red color has been tolerated for the time being on this building :-)
holmertz (43275) 2013-12-25 10:37
You don't mention whether this was taken early in the morning, but it is hard to imagine that this building could be seen without crowds of people in the street during working hours. In fact, the times I have passed by it the hustle and bustle of the street has largely diverted my attention away from the architectural beauty of the building. The very nice light also indicates morning and temporarily less dust and other kinds of pollution. The colours are very pleasant and the trees enhance the composition.
lousat (79772) 2013-12-25 12:14
Hi Alekhya,a magnificent facade taken from the best point of view,very very rich decorations ,i can see all in the best way thanks to your perfect details and colors,i like it! Have a nice day and thanks,Luciano
nikkitta (15718) 2013-12-25 12:20
Quite true are the note, the building has a Victorian architecture, colorful one in good contrasts with the trees that acted as a natural frame
Miguel82 (25453) 2013-12-25 16:43
A neo renaissance style building, useful photo note about that remarkable building, lushy vegetation, like the salmon hues, bright colors, excellent sharpness and framing, all the best, warm regards
abmdsudi (44964) 2013-12-26 4:50
Hard to miss the imposing building because of red and yellow shine through in the setting stunningly and abound of detail seen from this pov. Indeed an architectural beauty full of character well shot, I think you've done it justice capturing the grandeur of this historic building. A splendid piece of photo work, Congrats.
Noel_Byrne (26101) 2013-12-26 6:37
A beautiful building no doubt, and a fantastic note to accompany it! As I read your note, I scroll back up to see each element of the design, and it is fascinating to know how the building has come to be the jewel we see here. Its a very impressive building, and does give the feel of a French palace, the Corinthian columns are particularly striking against the vivid red color of the main façade. As well as the building I love the big bushy tree on the right too.
Beautifully done, thanks as always for sharing.
pajaran (53680) 2013-12-27 23:52
Interesantan i dobar tekst o staroj arhitekturi ...
Dobar snimka, lepo pokazana zgrada Administrativnog centra sa lepom fasadom.
Dobar snimak i kontrast lepo pokazana fasada, lepe boje.
Lepa stara arhitektura i detalji na fasadi.
Imajte lep dan za vikend, sve najbolje, srecno.
An interesting and good article on the old architecture ...
Good shot, nice building demonstrated administrative center with a beautiful facade.
Good footage and contrast nicely demonstrated facade, beautiful colors.
Beautiful old architecture and details on the facade.
Have a nice weekend day, all the best, good luck.
jhm (141921) 2013-12-28 1:41
A lovely architecture photograph, wonderful picture made with great quality.
A nice perspective and depth picture.
Your pictures is fine to look at.
Sharpness and clarity be superb.
Excellent composition, TFS.
Have a nice weekend,
subhendu_bagchi (25935) 2013-12-28 6:34
hello, a very very important building of Bengal indeed. You got a nice frame with this facade of this 'Red Building'. Sharp details and good tonal quality. Bhalo chhobi ar Khub bhalo information. Tfs.
danos (88819) 2013-12-28 8:03
very nice the view as the presentation of the Writers’ Buildings façade with its ochra's painting to make it even more beautiful.
I like its architectural style as the excellent presentation of it.
Have a good and healthy New Year,Danos
fabbs99 (16799) 2013-12-28 9:54
I wish the trees were not there.The facade of the Writers buildings would have looked much more attractive.Sharpness and clarity are perfect.I love the simplicity of your composition.Excellent composition, good presentation too. Very well done, TFS.
mirosu (15094) 2013-12-29 9:09
After very long journey and even longer after-journey recovery I’m again able to view and comment all the beautiful TE photographs.
Excellent building façade close-up photo with very nice colors, perfect light, very good clarity. Superb symmetrical arrangement, excellent details. The well-chosen tight crop eliminates all unwanted distractions. Well done.
Wish you and your family a Happy, Healthy & Prosperous New Year.
SWISS ALPS ROADS
npecanhuk (68104) 2014-01-01 14:00
Wonderful building and façade!
Very beautiful and attractive urban & architecture picture!
Sharpness, exposure, colors, horizontal format, chosen pov and symmetrical composition are all excellent!
TFS - congrats,
A very happy, healthy and prosperous 2014!!!
mcmtanyel (14917) 2014-01-01 15:45
It looks like Calcutta has some grandiose buildings and you have captured this one very effectively.