Wendell Rodricks’s partner Jerome Marrel wrote an emotional post on Instagram. He wrote it five days after Rodricks died in his home in Goa. He shared a fun picture of Rodricks where he is seen dressed up in a clourful outfit and smiling ear to ear giving us his typical simile.
Rodricks breathed his last on February 12. He was 59 years old. Fashion industry and Bollywood celebs were in a state of shock after learning about the sudden demise of Rodricks. He was a pioneer of resort wear and sustainable fashion and an activist of gay rights and environmental issues. He was one of those celebrated designers who were very loyal to his roots. He got the Padma Shri in 2014 for a collection that showcased outfits with Braille.
We remember speaking to Rodricks on the ten years challenge issue that we did for the magazine last year. And this is what he had to say. He mentioned, “For me being a forward-thinking person looking back and re-visiting the emotions is rather a tough job. We as designers love to talk about fashion forecasts. But I would like to say 2010 was a great year for us as India Fashion Week celebrated ten years. It was a big milestone and was a real celebratory moment for the Indian fashion designers.”
“It was during this time that my partner and I made a map to travel the world and become travel-worthy. So, we made our first sixty-day cruise of South America. The journey was intoxicatingly beautiful. The second journey that we made during these ten years was from Florida to the Panama Canal and ending up to Sydney. The third journey was from Singapore to Shanghai to Monte Carlo. We have already visited 150 plus countries and we have 20 odd countries left to visit and we plan to finish that next year. During this time, I released two books. One of them was my memoir which got a lot of success. It was about rich people adopting children and using them as sex workers and slaves. These last ten years have been an immensely happy experience in terms of taking fashion-forward. During this time, I did a lot of work with the ministry of textile. Another great event in my life was the celebration of thirty-five years of togetherness with my partner. I am happy to be a part of the LGBTQ community. The Supreme Court’s verdict on Section 377 was a great victory for us. I also won the Padma Shri award for fashion under the art category. In 2019 we finally converted our home to a museum and I have moved into a smaller house.”