This year, India Design Forum has put together a fabulous line up of speakers. It would be hard to top Fabio Novembre and Marcel Wanders who were in the country a few weeks ago for another Design conference, but kudos to Rajshree Pathy, who truly brought in the cavalry! Here are the speakers I will be seeking out and why you should too.
1. Ross Lovegrove: If this name hasn’t got your heartbeat racing, you probably live under a rock. Lovegrove is a British industrial designer whose work is inspired by nature. The Royal College of Art graduate is considered a visionary and has won many prestigious awards. His work is very organic, fluid and aimed at stimulating a profound change. He has designed for the likes of Sony, Apple, Moooi, Kartell, Capellini and well, the list is endless.
2. Thomas Heatherwick: Remember that gorgeous Cauldron at the opening ceremony of the Olympics 2012? Well, guess who designed it? Heatherwick is nothing short of brilliant and his innovative use of materials and engineering in public monuments and sculptures has catapulted him to be one of the frontrunners of British architecture and design today. Also a Royal College of Art graduate, his design philosophy is “to bring architecture, design and sculpture together within a single practice”.
3. Renny Ramakers: Ramakers is the co-founder and director of Droog – a very famous design company in Amsterdam that collaborates with designers from around the world to create cutting edge events, products and projects and the chairman on the board of THNK a school of creative leadership. She studied to be an art historian at the University of Leiden and contributes to many magazines and books. “I am not an idealist by any means. It is not my goal to create social design, but I do like it when social renewal results in innovative design.” – (2010)
4. Asif Khan: Khan is new kid on the block and one of the most exciting talent in Britain today. He may have just graduated in 2007, but has already created a fervor in the design world by winning the pitch to design the a 2012 Olympic pavilion for Coca-Cola – the Beatbox. His project “Cloud” which questioned the possibilities of architecture won him Miami’s Designer of the Future award. Watch out for this one.
5. Subodh Gupta: One of the 10 most commercially successful artists in Asia, Subodh Gupta’s work stands out by his use of banal mundane stainless steel kitchenware in his installations, paintings, photographs and performances. Studied in the College of Arts & Crafts in Patna, he now lives in New Delhi and has exhibited around the world, including at the Venice Biennale. His memorable works include the monumental installation Gandhi’s Three Monkeys which caused quite a stir and sold for a Million Euros.
6. Nipa Doshi: Doshi has had a career path that leaves me envious and inspired. She studied at the NID in Ahmedabad and then went on to graduating from Royal College of Art after being inspired by Jasper Morrison. Today, she is the co-founder of Doshi Levien, a design studio based in London which explores the melding of cultures. Their work has gathered a lot of focus in the recent years and they have contributed to design houses such as Moroso, Cappellini as well as companies such as Intel and Camper.