Dr. Anupama Kundoo's architectural practice, started in 1990. It demonstrates a strong focus on material research to achieve architecture of low environmental impact, and development of building technologies that are socio-economically beneficial. The practice is supported by extensive research and experimentation.
Kundoo was born in Pune in 1967. Her high school education was from Mary Immaculate Girls' High School. She studied for architecture from the Sir J. J. College of Architecture, University of Bombay and received her degree in architecture in 1989. She was awarded the Vastu Shilpa Foundation Fellowship in 1996 for her thesis on "Urban Eco-Community: Design and Analysis for Sustainability". She got her doctoral degree from Technical University of Berlin in 2008.
Kundoo established herself as an architect in the Auroville where she designed and built many economically innovative buildings with "energy and water efficient infrastructure" adaptations. She worked here from middle of 1990 till 2002. Her approach to building design is based on material research that minimizes environmental effects. Her basic design approach is to use "waste materials, unskilled labour and local communities". One of the notable buildings built for her own residence is titled the "Wall House", built in a community area of 15 acres (6.1 ha) with a built in space of 100 square metres (1,100 sq ft) constructed at a cost of one million Rupees in 2000, in Auroville for communal living. This house is L-Shaped in plan, has a courtyard in the middle; while it is modern in concept it adopts traditional "vernacular" use of materials such as compressed earth, concrete and steel. The bathroom is set in open-to-sky design, with smooth merging with the interior and external spaces and landscaped in manner which gives it both a modern and a regional appearance. Her work culture is a "research-oriented practice and practice-oriented teaching."
She expresses her design approach clearly by stating: "My designs are not driven by the worry that the world will end, but by finding ways to make the most with what one has." A full sized replica of her Wall House was made by hand and exhibited at the Venice Biennale of Architecture. Net York Times called it as "a gem among rubble". She is one of the five "globe-spanning " architects featured in "The Architect is Present". She has received accolades for a design she presented for the Indian products entitled "Made in India" for the Be Open Foundation in New Delhi, which was a "live" design exhibited at Madrid’s Museo ICO.
Another interesting theme brought out in her architectural creation is titled "Liberty" which presents a reading place as a free book free library where individuals can "sit and read whatever they wish to". This creation is built with three types of trees fixed in the centre of a square space. The trees' "trunks and branches" are made from steel and the leaves made of salvaged books, with the floor made of concrete. Sitting under the shade of this tree people could indulge in conversation or read a book with the gentle wind blowing through the leaves. This was exhibited at the Placa de Salvador Segui in Barcelona during June–September 2014.
Kundoo taught at the Technical University, Berlin, and Darmstadt in Hesse during 2005. She worked as Assistant Professor at Parsons The New School for Design, New York until 2011 then moving to Australia as a senior lecturer in the University of Queensland. In 2014, she shifted to Europe and began working at the European School of Architecture and Technology at the Universidad Camilo José Cela in Madrid. and has her own firm, Anupama Kundoo Architects
She has written a book and published a number of technical papers in magazines and newspapers. Her published book is Roger Anger: Research on Beauty/Recherche sur la beauté Architecture 1958–2008, jovis Verlag GmbH, Berlin, 2009. Her published papers are:
- Das Tauziehen zwischen Umweltschutz und Entwicklung, Bauwelt, Bauverlag BV GmbH, Gütersloh, March 2011
- More than cladding, Design Today, Living Media India Ltd, New Delhi, June 2010
- Who decides what’s green, Design Today, Living Media India Ltd, New Delhi, March 2010
- Urban development, Options for urbanisation, Survey of the environment, The Hindu, Chennai, 2008
- Roger Anger: Chief Architect of Auroville, Architecture Time Space & People, Magazine of the Council of Architecture, India, Delhi, May 2008
- Auroville: An Architectural Laboratory, Made in India, AD Architectural Design, John Wiley and Sons Ltd., London, November – December 2007
- Eco-friendly Approach, Architecture + Design, Vol. XXIII, No 2, Media Transasia, Delhi, February 2006
- Sustainability and Globalisation, Indian Architect & Builder, Jasubhai Publications, Mumbai, July 2005
- Devoted to Dance, Ray Meeker´s expression to Protima Bedi´s parting gift, a fired temple at Nrityagram, Inside Outside, Mumbai, October 2000
- Cues from the Past – Local details and traditional elements in a contemporary structure, Indian Architect & Builder, Jasubhai Publications, Mumbai, October 1997
- Comments on Building Blocks, Indian Architect & Builder, Jasubhai Publications, Mumbai, January 1992
- "Anupama Kundoo". indian-architects.com. Retrieved 17 October 2015.