A New Global ‘Indian’ Aesthetic: Colour Sensibilities of Modern India

Our recent event ColourNext Dialogues in New Delhi, which brought together professionals from various design disciplines to think more deeply about their relationship with colour, ended with an interesting debate. Reflecting on the event after engaging with the installations of four themes, an urban planner expressed that while the themes represented social trends prevalent all over the country, the colour palettes would appeal only to the urban sensibilities. Taking this argument further, fashion designers in the group stated that the palettes were devoid of “Indian-ness,” which would make them appeal to a broader consumer segment in different regions of the country, including Tier 2 cities. A fundamental question was raised in response by another participant- how could colours have a uniform appeal in a country as diverse as India? [Read more…]

ColourNext Dialogues Delhi: Awakening

Awakening was the final theme discussed at ColourNext Dialogues in New Delhi. Speakers Siri Devi Khandavelli, an intermedia artist based in Bangalore and Delhi, and Shalini Jaikaria, Founder and Designer at Gieshadesign, began by talking about their first impressions upon seeing the installation. To Siri, the installation signified a sort of spiritual journey, an ascension of the soul through time and experience. She also spoke of how the many birds and their upward movement suggested that each individual was aspiring to move upwards, which contributed to the collective rising. Shalini was drawn to the installation because of its delicate fragility and soft transparency, elements she uses in her own work. [Read more…]

ColourNext Dialogues Delhi: Crystal

The third installation of the evening was Crystal. Speakers Anthony Lopez, CEO and Primary Designer at Lopez Design, and Banhi Jha, Dean of the National Institute for Fashion Technology (NIFT), noted Crystal was distinctive from the previous installations due to its order, transparency, symmetry, and strictly planned design. Its white and clear linear design imbued it with a sense of purity and perfection. Its design is simple, yet complex, forcing participants to think deeply about its meaning. Many participants felt a connection with spirituality, infinity, or the journey of the afterlife.The symmetry, transparency, and light hues give Crystal and ethereal feel instigated a philosophical journey, a meditative and reflective appreciation of its design. [Read more…]

ColourNext Dialogues Delhi: Headrush

Headrush, the second theme of the day at ColourNext Dialogues in Delhi, incited some interesting reflections amongst the participants. Speakers Shristi Bajaj, founder and designer at Designbait and Pushkar Thakur, founder and creative director at Grafiosi Design studios, began by talking about the energy and dynamism of the installation. To Pushkar, it signified not only only energy and immediacy, but also drama and even danger. To him, Headrush is about discarding inhibitions and facing the unknown and the thrilling. [Read more…]

ColourNext Dialogues Delhi: Small Joys

At ColourNext Dialogues in Delhi, Small Joys was the first installation with which the participants interacted. The speakers, fashion designer Nida Mahmood and gallery owner Nidhi Jyoti Jain, were initially struck by the idea of memory and nostalgia. The installation evoked a sense of looking back at one’s life, in the yellowing books and clumps of askew postcards hanging on the walls. Nida also brought up the idea of finding refuge away from the chaos of a hectic urban life, and a nostalgic yearning for innocence. In this chaotic life, she said, we can’t imagine being able to wake up without worry. Small Joys realizes the need for a little fun, a little happiness, and a little freedom that we all crave. [Read more…]

ColourNext Dialogues 2012 in New Delhi

The Center for Knowledge Societies, in collaboration with Asian Paints is organizing ColourNext Dialogues 2012, a a first of its kind conclave on colour trends, forecasting and visual directions in Indian society. The conclave, to be held at the NCIS Exhibition Grounds in New Delhi on February 28th, 2012, will be an intensive half-day discussion on the visual significance of observed social trends.

These trends have been derived from the ColourNext 2012 project conducted by Asian Paints and CKS, a year-long trend forecasting initiative. The four themes identified are: Headrush, Small Joys, Awakening and Crystal.

Speakers at the conclave will include
[Read more…]

Bringing the Inside Out – Rethinking Spatial Design

While user-centered design is the new buzzword in the design community, architects are way behind the curve. For a long while, architects across the world have been focusing their designs on user requirements, but have not been thinking deeply about the relationship between the space and the user who inhabits the space. Unlike product, system, and service design where user-centered design is about making users’ lives easier by addressing their needs and challenges, user comfort may take on different meanings in the context of spatial design. Spatial comfort may not be only about meeting the functional needs of users, but also about creating an environment that allows the users to feel “one” with the space.

In one of the research studies conducted by CKS in 2010 to understand how Indian consumers perceive luxury, it was revealed that they define luxury as consumption of products and spaces, which are in-sync with their inner philosophies or personalities. Owing to the extremely busy, fast-paced lives of today, individuals are looking to create these “inner spaces” within the comforts of their homes to allow more frequent access as opposed to waiting for a vacation. [Read more…]

Agenda for ColourNext Dialogues 2012

As we mentioned in a post earlier this week, the Center for Knowledge Societies is collaborating with Asian Paints in organizing an event, ColourNext Dialogues 2012, a a first of its kind conclave on colour trends, forecasting and visual directions in Indian society. The conclave, to be held at a restored mill in Byculla, Mumbai on January 24th, 2012, will be an intensive half-day discussion on the visual significance of observed and predicted social trends.

Speakers will Include

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M.P. Ranjan, Design Thinker and Independent Academic
Aparna Piramal Raje, Columnist, LiveMint
Nien Sao, Colour Specialist and HoD Fashion Dept., Pearl Academy
Wasim Khan, Director, Lemon Design
Valerie Bonnardel, Reader in Experimental Psychology, University of Winchester
Sarita Sundar, Partner, Trapezestudios

The event, moderated by Dr. Aditya Dev Sood, will begin with a walk through the installation spaces, in order to introduce the themes to participants. This will be followed by discussions on the visual, especially colour-related, significance of each of these themes. An agenda for the day is provided below:

10:30 – 11:00 Installation Space Walkthrough

11:00 – 11:10 Welcome address by Aditya Dev Sood

11:10 – 11:20 An Introduction to Colour Next and its Objectives by Mr. Joshua Karthik

11:20 – 11:40 A Dialogic Approach to Colour Trends

11:40 – 12:00 Presentations of Themes by Sneha Raman, CKS

12:00 – 12:30 Interactive Session on Themes

12:30 – 13:50 Panel Discussions on each Theme

13:50 – 14:00 Closing Note and Invitation to Lunch

Participation at ColourNext Dialogues is by invitation only. However, if you are interested in attending, please contact Vedika Khanna at cks@cks.in

ColourNext Dialogues: Colour, Social Trends and More

Asian Paints, in partnership with the Center for Knowledge Societies, is pleased and excited to announce ColourNext Dialogues 2012, a first of its kind conclave on the social meaning of colour trends and visual directions in Indian society. The conclave will be held at a quaint restored mill in Byculla, Mumbai on January 24th, 2012.

ColourNext is a colour trend forecasting initiative for Indian interiors, conducted by Asian Paints in collaboration with CKS. The object of ColourNext is to study and truly understand evolving aesthetic moods in India based on in-depth research into visual and societal trends, expert interviews, and focus group discussions. This year, 2012, marks ten years of this initiative.

ColourNext 2012 was concluded recently, and yielded four prominent themes. ColourNext Dialogues was conceived as a means to celebrate the completion of a decade of ColourNext as well as to present these themes to the larger public. The conclave will bring together leading designers, colour theorists, social scientists, architects, interior designers and other relevant experts to discuss the social, psychological, emotive associations and design consequences of these emerging colour directions.

Speakers at ColourNext Dialogues include

Shimul Javeri Kadri, Principal Architect, SJK Architects
M.P. Ranjan, Design Thinker and Independent Academic
Aparna Piramal Raje, Columnist, LiveMint
Nien Sao, Colour Specialist and HoD Fashion Dept. Pearl Academy

The four themes from ColourNext 2012 have been translated into visual and spatial installations, which will be displayed at the venue. Participants will be encouraged to absorb and be inspired by the themes and embedded contextual stories, and thereafter participate in a conversation that will explore such questions as:

. Why are we seeing an emergence of these themes and where are they being manifested?
. What socio-cultural trends are being evoked by this theme?
. What does it tell us about the moods, desires, and appetites of the people?
. How might practitioners interpret these aesthetic directions in their work?

This will be an intimate gathering, with open discussions and little distinction between speakers and participants, in order to encourage the greatest possible interactivity. The entire event will be documented audio-visually and information about each of the themes will be presented on the Design Public blog after the event.

Participation at ColourNext Dialogues is by invitation only. However, if you are interested in attending, please contact Vedika Khanna at cks@cks.in