A lawn-variety ‘slicing chai’ glass is elevated into an stylish champagne flute whilst an not easily seen lota (vessel) finds delight of location in its new avatar as a decorative jar. Unapologetically unconventional in design, yet deeply rooted inside the Indian milieu, these domestic decor items are a part of the 21-piece series through Ikkis, the new emblem from designer Gunjan Gupta, launched at Maison & Objet in advance this year. Ikkis—which actually interprets to ‘twenty-one’ in Hindi—launches with 21 items designed for the 21st century. Each item is firmly entrenched in a thing of day by day life in India and is an Indian at heart as it is contemporary in shape. Seemingly everyday gadgets like the balti (bucket), kulhar (earthen mugs) are reinterpreted and uplifted into works of art.
This juxtaposition among the conventional and the cutting-edge isn’t new territory for Gunjan Gupta, founder and innovative director of Ikkis. For over a decade now, Gupta has been growing current relevance for declining Indian handicrafts thru her self-named logo—and Ikkis follows a similar philosophy. “My eponymous domestic decor gadgets logo is an inventive vision incorporating indigenous materials, capabilities, and narratives into sculptural objects which are symbolic of cutting-edge India and fall under the collectible layout category. Ikkis is a product-design emblem that contains the same spirit and is focused in the direction of the layout of items which can be time-honored for application, characteristic and regular dwelling.”
Each home decor objects harks again to a familiar, reassuring ritual or reminiscence. The kulhar represents the comforting ritual of chai and conversations on the neighborhood tea stall, whilst the patella brings to mind the flurry of interest in a standard Indian kitchen—with mothers at the helm. Gupta believes those quotidian memories lie on the heart of her paintings: “Stories of ordinary India are the soul of my designs and I suppose that is the factor of my work that humans connect with across the world. Ikkis expresses itself thru the discharge of tension among vintage and new, hand made and industrial, form and characteristic, motive and play…”
Ikkis has additionally drawn in a huge community of neighborhood artisans— providing them a platform to showcase their crafts and abilities—who have created this series the use of conventional substances (brass, stone, copper, and glass) in mixture with patented finishes including a terracotta powder finish that has been advanced in-residence. The brand gives a limiteless as well as confined series; the previous is the result of business and hand-crafted methods and became released in January. However, it’s the limited series (slated to launch on the September edition of Maison & Objet) that without a doubt embodies Indian craftsmanship. With it, Gupta hopes to “re-contextualize Indian craft for modern dwelling and putting the craftsman at the vanguard of the introduction”—a becoming tribute to craft, certainly.