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About Us

The Kurula Varkey Design Forum is a student-led annual forum for critical discourse in architecture and architectural education.


The forum involves discussion of projects by final year students of architecture from across Southeast Asia and the works of panelists from around the world. The forum is not a jury or a competition but a dialogic event to understand and identify the diverse directions emerging in the discipline of architecture through student projects as catalysts.

The event is named after a beloved professor at CEPT, Prof. Kurla Varkey, in honor of his contribution and influence over the people he interacted with. 

Kurula Varkey

Professor Kurula Varkey was born on the 14th of July 1945, the elder of the two sons of T.K. Vergis and Sosamma Vergis. He studied Architecture at IIT Kharagpur. He came to Ahmedabad in 1968, joining Vastu-Shilpa as a trainee and later as an architect. He started teaching in the School of Architecture at CEPT University. He taught Design studios, the history of architecture, and settlement patterns, as well as guided many research theses.
In 1977, Prof. Varkey took up a teaching post at the University of Nairobi. In the years to come, he initiated a complete overhaul of the Department’s curriculum and teaching methods. A period of study and travel followed. He joined the Masters Program in Architecture at the University of Helsinki and traveled all over Scandinavia and Europe. Returning to India in 1987, he was appointed Director of the School of Architecture at the CEPT University, Ahmedabad. This he saw as both a challenge and an opportunity. A school with high standards and a well-established tradition presented the challenge of enlarging the concerns.
Varkey took the opportunity to emphasize the relation of architecture to culture and urban contexts during this venture as Director. In these last years, he has been a much respected and sought-after participant in educational and professional forums across the country. Yet he maintained a close relationship with each student that he taught.

Previous Panelists

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