TAKE on art
Grafting her First Decade Gunjan Gupta Image Credit: TAKE on art
Grafting her First Decade Gunjan Gupta Image Credit: TAKE on art

Crafting her First Decade: Gunjan Gupta

Most design-artists would be pleased to participate in one international design show in Italy to mark the 10th anniversary of their practice; Gunjan Gupta gets to celebrate the milestone with two.

Aparna Piramal Raje

The internationally acclaimed, Delhi-based design-artist and Founder of Studio Wrap, is presenting furniture pieces at both the Triennale di Milano, a design museum in Milan, from April to September 2016, as well as the prestigious Venice Architecture Biennale from May to November 2016. Both shows have been sponsored by Alamak!, a pan-Asian curated design collective that has provided Gupta with the ideal platform to present her works. The Indian government’s ‘Make In India’ initiative has also supported the Venice show.

Each show presents dramatically different aspects of the designer’s work. When seen together they trace her evolution as a contemporary Indian design-artist, credited with introducing an inventive cultural narrative to community-based crafts production.

At the Triennale, in a show called ‘21st Century Design. Design After Design’, Gupta showcased a trio of street stories: the Bori Throne, Gadda Throne and Potli Chair. Each piece elevated ordinary elements of Indian street life — bicycle parts, mattresses and jute sacks — into objects of artistic discourse through larger than-life storytelling.

Amongst Gupta’s most popular design objects, the bicycle series was the outcome of a workshop on urban cultures that Gupta was invited to participate in with Netherlands based Droog Design in 2008. Gupta was struck by the contrast between Dutch office-goers using  the bicycle as a means of transport, and Indian vendors relying on it as a source of livelihood. She re-constructed bicycles to create new forms, producing artworks that then went into a show wit


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