Playful_Abandon_MAIN.jpg
Ayaz Basrai

The exterior of the Jam Jar Diner

The interior of Smoke House Room

SUMIR TAGRA AND JITEN THUKRAL

Colour Inspiration for Thukral & Tagra’s Colour Palette.

Dominus Aeries—Flying House by Thukral & Tagra

Life Cycle 2 by Thukral & Tagra.

HImanshu Dogra

Colour Inspiration for Himanshu Dogra’s Colour Palette.

The Banarasi T-shirt

Playful_Abandon_MAIN.jpg
Showcase 30 Sep 2013

Playful Abandon

The theme distils the energy and inventiveness of play into aesthetic inspiration. It is a boundless playground for exploring and experimenting with young, fresh colour palettes that reflect bold, innovative ideas and processes.

In this issue of Colour Quotient we explore the joyful colour stories of Playful Abandon through conversations with four design professionals representing three unique design practices based in India— Ayaz Basrai (The Busride Design Studio), Sumir Tagra and Jiten Thukral (Thukral & Tagra), and Himanshu Dogra (Play Clan). Inspired by the issue theme colour (Aqua Young–9207), the four design professionals share their colour interpretations of Playful Abandon. In ‘Spirit of Playful Abandon’ and ‘Colour Inspiration’, each designer shares their interpretation of the theme and presents a custom colour palette for the same. In the section ‘Showcase’, each designer delves into their folio of work, and shares an instance of contemporary design work that represents the qualities of Playful Abandon.

Ayaz Basrai

Ayaz Basrai 

Industrial Designer 
Founder and Proprietor, The Busride Design Studio

I studied Industrial Design at the National Institute of Design, and graduated in 2003. After a short stint in Dubai, working with a start-up design studio there, handling all kinds of projects,  I moved back to Mumbai to set-up The Busride Design Studio with my brother Zameer. We dabble in all kinds of work, from designing carnival parades and installation art, to institutional architecture and boutique hotels. Most of our work comes through our massive interest in hospitality, and we’ve worked on venues across the spectrum, from molecular gastronomy tasting rooms, to Udipi restaurants.

Spirit of Playful Abandon 

Playful Abandon is young, fun, and quirky. It’s the absence of a guiding narrative and a deep respect for chaos. It becomes more about deciding in the moment, and not ascribing decisions to deeply thought-out logic. The notion of play is in itself all that is best about the universe around us. It’s the only way to see things, the only sensible way to experience life. While this sounds a bit hippy and tree-hugger-like, I do believe Playful Abandon allows us to take a fun look at our own lives and take great joy in acting alive in the moment.

Colour Inspiration

This colour palette to me spells out a bold and vibrant scheme, yet slightly muted and not over-saturated. It has a certain freshness and happy nostalgia associated with it, the colour of sunsets and popsicles. Together they form a fun set, something I could personally apply confidently over walls and environments to stimulate fun and creativity, and a non-serious approach to most things around. Hopefully they would aim to inspire and break rules, and encourage an atmosphere of non-conformity.

Ayaz Basrai’s Showcase

The Jam Jar Diner at Versova comes to mind instantly, we aimed to create a sweet grandmother-larder inspired cottage by the sea, with a fun, quirky attitude. The idea was to provide a buzzing all day venue with a strong signature style, and a slightly twisted approach. We used a strong teal and distressed grey scheme to sculpt the cottage, and a much brighter, funkier scheme for the china mosaic on the outdoor terrace. 

The exterior of the Jam Jar Diner

The Smoke House Room combined the usage of austere white spaces, with an ever-changing psychedelic colour story. We mixed colours in light to create a distinct mood-scape—mango-red evenings and saturated deep-purple-magenta night-scapes. The space transits seamlessly according to the mood and energy levels in the club, while maintaining its illusory experience. 

The interior of Smoke House Room

SUMIR TAGRA AND JITEN THUKRAL

Colour Inspiration for Thukral & Tagra’s Colour Palette.

Sumir Tagra and Jiten Thukral 

Artists 
Founders, Thukral & Tagra

Sumir Tagra and Jiten Thukral work collaboratively in a wide variety of media including painting, sculpture, installation, video, graphic and product design, websites, music, and fashion. Thukral & Tagra blur the lines between fine art and popular culture, product placement and exhibition design, artistic inspiration, and media hype. Their works comment on the globalisation of consumer culture and the repercussions of this as it is being experienced in India currently. While both playful and humorous, their works express thoughtful questions about the nature of Indian identity as it is articulated by Indians themselves and projected on to India by the rest of the world.

Spirit of Playful Abandon  

We constantly shuttle between the real and unreal—daily, every hour, every minute, there is an exchange of thoughts, contradictions, and parallel sequences. We constantly try to seek similarities and draw situations—choosing the colour, medium, scale, space, timeline, and audience, to interpret the work to its best.

Colour Inspiration 

Our practice brings with it a lot of optimism. Sometimes we are in constant search of an image with utopian qualities—both romantic and paradisiacal. Childhood memories are so embedded in our work, our candy colour palette is undoubtedly from there. It is still fascinating to paint a perfect picture with the perfect colour. We see colour in tactile form, in volumes, and feel its power. It is like a daydream.

Showcase 

As you know now, we try to see smells, feel mediums, and make sense from the mundane. Our practice and methodologies are governed by emotions. Living in times when most of our peers are deconstructing things, we still believe in craft—constructing still has a lot of scope and passion.

Dominus Aeries—Flying House by Thukral & Tagra

Life Cycle 2 by Thukral & Tagra.

The series is close to our heart since it depicts our own dreams and memories.

“‘Colour is a place where our brain and the universe meet.’—Paul Klee
Is there anything beyond colour? We are interested in awkward moments, in-betweens, sudden fallouts, which normally go unnoticed. We love to paint a picture, compose it like kids—playfully, carefully, trying to blow bubbles, picking colours through them. We love the act of making a perfect picture.”

HImanshu Dogra

Himanshu Dogra 

Designer
Founder, Play Clan

Graduating from the National Institute of Fashion Technology, Himanshu Dogra founded Play Clan in 2008. Combining fashion, art, and design to create collections in home, apparel, gifts, and accessories, Play Clan celebrates Asian subculture inspired by everyday observations and vibrant colours. Selected as the Best New Talent by EDIDA and a finalist for the Young Creative Entrepreneur Award 2011 by British Council in India, Play Clan has collaborated with Paul Smith, Absolut, Levi’s, Tokyo Fashion Week, and the Maharaja of Jodhpur. Play Clan retails from self-run stores in Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, Goa, Fort Kochi, Pondicherry, Gwalior, and Gurgaon.

Spirit of Playful Abandon  

Play Clan has a core philosophy of ‘a parallel world, an alternate reality.’ We use this idea all the time and this is what Playful Abandon means to us. We feel that there are no rules and no boundaries. A fearless approach to colours, rooted in nature and culture is Playful Abandon for us.

Colour Inspiration 

The image of balloons in random colours, pulled by many strings, instantly triggers emotions of playful memories and exciting times, full of laughter and happiness. It is also associated with the idea of simple pleasures of life and are symbolic of optimism and hope. At many levels, the colours of the palette take forward the same feelings and represent Playful Abandon—and so do our products, we hope!

The Banarasi T-shirt

Showcase

The Banarasi Tee is part of the Kashi Collection that celebrates the city of Kashi and its ghats. The story behind the T-shirt is explained below. 

‘Exit Samsara. Enter Nirvana, the permanent residence of Lord Shiva. Debit your sins and credit your virtues with a single dip in the River of Heaven, The Ganges. Redeem your spiritual rewards by chanting Sanskrit mantras, ringing the bells and blowing the conch shell. Stop time under the shade of an old banyan tree and listen to the back ground score of ancient tales from priests and pilgrims. Take a boat ride to the sandy beach of the river for a panoramic view of the entire city. See the city of ghats, of narrow lanes, of temples and old houses, of saints and sinners, of pan and bhang, of life and death at a leisurely pace and end your spiritual quest here.’

 

IMAGES

AYAZ BASRAI

Profile Image and Showcase
• Courtesy Ayaz Basrai
Colour Inspiration
• jar () » flickr.com/photos/jariceiii/4938833996/
• Sharon Pruitt » flickr.com/photos/pinksherbet/4685807904/

SUMIR TAGRA AND JITEN THUKRAL

Profile Image and Showcase
• Courtesy Thukral & Tagra
Colour Inspiration
• Pete Birkinshaw » flickr.com/photos/binaryape/5299815949/
• Gunther Hagleitner » flickr.com/photos/hagleitn/2429708549/

HIMANSHU DOGRA

• Courtesy Himanshu Dogra