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A peek into the traditional art forms and Indian culture with Arpita Banerjee and Siddharth Gaikwad

Avantika university has always done a great job at providing exposure. March 1, 2019, we had the extremely talented and experienced Arpita Banerjee and Siddharth Gaikwad on campus.

Arpita, an Industrial Designer from NID holds 15-years of experience in the design industry. Her work contributes towards the health sector in fields like diabetes, urology, cardiac care, womens health, oncology etc. She has worked closely with United Nations and has multiple patents under her name and also has papers published in International Forums. Arpita works diligently with the aim of creating values for the masses through her design.

Siddharth Gaikwad, a hands-on customer and user-experience consultant, has an experience of over 19 years in supporting businesses to bridge the gap between their customers, commerce and technology. An Engineer with a Post-graduate degree in Industrial Design from NID, he has delivered many successful digital transformation strategies for clients that impact enterprise level change and has led teams for mission critical innovation projects. In the last 2 years, he has incubated 3 start-ups and piloted their minimal viable product output in Maharashtra.

Having such experienced people amongst us, it made everybody dig a little deep into their minds and think. In the beginning of the 15-hour long Design Marathon, we were told about their lives as designers and how every designer has to work with different teams in various companies and how we as designers work for putting things in an efficient manner.

We were enlightened about the various art forms which are prevalent in India but most of us arent even aware about them. HANDS ON STUDIOS, a platform started by the two of them, is one such platform where they help in connecting the local artists to designers. There are workshops which are held all across the country which creates awareness about the various art forms amongst the masses. The essence of every art is different, and the materials used in every one of them speaks a different language which in turn communicates with the artist/ designer in a different manner. Emphasis was given on the loss of value for organic things in this synthetic era.

We were told about the mesmerizing art of Lippan, Rabari, Tholu and Pattachitra. The way in which the mindset of the people have shaped and influenced the products was thought- provoking.

The use of mirror in Lippan was of much significance because of the peoples beliefs of fighting evil. The young 2-year olds of Gujrat were taught the intricate Rabari embroidery so that they can make ornaments until they get married. It is an artform in the society but to the extent to which it connects people emotionally is of greater importance.

While designing any product, there are many perspectives which need to be addressed. The manufacturer and the end-consumer have many intermediaries, and as a designer it is our duty to make them in such a manner that it is easy for a reseller, consumer as well as the service people. Personas play a great role in understanding the usage of any product. How the masses interact with the product is categorised through Personas. During the end of the session we were taught about the three Cs which are used by every designer to make their products better. The sort of Community it forms to attract as many people as possible triggers them to behave in an expected way. Secondly, the Content, the way in which the information is delivered is essential. Thirdly, how well knowledgeable the product is of the current surroundings is of utmost importance.

The session was very informative and fifteen-hour long Design Marathon gave us a platform to practice what we had learnt in the session by the mentors. The session provoked each and every one of us to think differently as to how we can incorporate different ideas and perform brilliantly. Every one of us walked out of the room with a much-broadened mindset.

Written by,
Gauri Singh