Cafe Lota & Museum Shop, National Crafts Museum
- Studio Lotus
- New Delhi
Studio Lotus was appointed by the National Crafts Museum to redesign the Museum Shop, the Café and sections of the Courtyard; all of which were in a poor state of disrepair.
The overall idea concept in the renovation was to retain the use of humble material in building the framework and functional aspects and using craft to elevate the spirit of the spaces.
For the Museum Shop, building openings have been reconfigured to naturally connect it to the landscape around, making the shop much more visible and create a sense of lightness by bringing in daylight from the old internal courts. The high volume of the building and elements such as the old timber rafters have been restored and revealed by removing the false ceilings and restoring construction details. The walls serve as a canvas for either storytelling through craft or for merchandise.
Café Lota is a natural extension of the Museum shop and is set in the negative space created by the boundary wall and the museum shop. A lightweight metal framework inserted into this odd volume ties the space together and creates nooks and portals for people to dine and converse in. Negative spaces are filled with plants to create a light and airy yet shaded enclosure that makes full use of the beautiful trees and painted walls that surround the eatery. A lightweight bamboo trellis of varying density brings dappled light into the space through the day.
Both the spaces use a tight palette of local sandstone, local timber such as mango, Mild steel and sand-plastered walls to create a monolithic backdrop for the crafted objects and an earthy setting that ties all the spaces together.
Modular and easy to reconfigure Mild Steel and timber display systems, which span tall vertical surfaces in some places, effectively hold the varying nature of craft objects and textiles.
The entrance to the premise and the ancillary facility block for the toilets, offices etc were also cleaned up and reconfigured.
For further development of the other buildings and overall development of the entire National Crafts Museum complex, the Museum team has adapted this design approach.