You once said you have art in your pores!
After dabbling with architecture and interior design for over 25 years, I realised I could take art beyond the rarified into everyday life. Graphic art for me is usable art, reachable and fun.
What was distinctive about your Neophile and Illustrati collections at Maison et Objet?
Neophile is the new Indian palace creation—regal and Victorian, but also distils the uber aspects. And Illustrati is humorous and vibrant. The two seemed like a Versailles form in Disney colours.
How did people respond to your versatile designs in Paris?
They were gobsmacked. My collection didn’t showcase an India of the villages or of splendid heritage, but India as we Indians live it.
What was the turnover like?
I could say I’ve done more business in Paris than I would have done in India in two years.
You’ll be launching your Neophile collection in India this November. Are you apprehensive?
Neophile is classic, timeless, evolutionary. So I have a good feeling about it.
What kind of clientele do you expect?
It’ll be an eclectic mix of people: young, savvy and conventional.
How has design evolved over the years?
When I started, there was the Janpath hangover and the pseudo-colonial appeal. After 1993 people started responding to the contemporary.
You have said that you approach the canvas with awe, not fear.
Design is lack of inhibition, courage to experiment. So approach it with awe, not complacency.
What’s the coolest thing you’ve designed?
Probably my house, where the contemporary, colonial and Mughal themes interweave to create a new vocabulary.
What’s lined up for the future?
Foreign expansion, setting up franchise stores here, doing pop stores for youngsters.
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