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Speakers

Graphic Artist & Researcher
Designer & Independent Researcher

Date & Time

Thu, 9 Jun 2022

Categories

Location (for BIC Venue, BIC Hybrid and BIC Cafe)

Bangalore International Centre
7, 4th Main Road, Domlur II Stage
Bengaluru, Karnataka 560 071 India
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Contact

+91 98865 99675 bic@bangaloreinternationalcentre.org

Are you sitting down? Have you thought of what you are sitting on? What your favourite chair’s history is? Why do certain seats make us feels a certain way and make us gravitate towards them in a room?

A whole spectrum of history, design, culture, discipline, identities, object study and geographical context are often located in the various kinds of seating that we now may not necessarily be aware of. To remedy this, in this episode of BIC Talks designer independent researcher Nia Thandapani speaks with graphic artist and researcher Sarita Sundar on her newest research project and collection of essays edited by her, From the Frugal to the Ornate: Stories of the Seat in India, which by deconstructing the seat,
reflects upon the marked shift in the way practitioners, users, and analysts conceptualise and engage with object culture, and a subsequent ‘turn to the material’.

Speakers

Sarita Sundar

Graphic Artist & Researcher

Sarita Sundar is a graphic artist and researcher, and Founder of Hanno, a heritage interpretation and design consultancy.

She builds upon her past work through a 2022-23 Fulbright Visiting Scholar Fellowship that takes a critical look at the intersectional milestones in Indian and American design histories. Sarita Sundar has tested many seats in her career as designer, design historian, and studied observer of the visual world. Testing one such seat, which had a personal significance—her grandfather’s charukassela, or reclining chair—might well have triggered her keen interest in material culture and objects; to ferret out why they take the shape they take, who conceived them as this way or that, what gave these ‘things’ agency, and why. Collaborating with Sarita on the research and outcomes of this project is the Godrej Archives, the Godrej group’s business archive, as part of its various engagements with art and culture,

By deconstructing the seat, From the Frugal to the Ornate: Stories of the Seat in India, reflects upon the marked shift in the way practitioners, users, and analysts conceptualise and engage with object culture, and a subsequent ‘turn to the material’.

Nia Thandapani

Designer & Independent Researcher

Nia Thandapani is a designer and independent researcher based in Bangalore. Her research interests lie in late 19th and 20th century South Asian material culture and decolonisation of museums and design history.

Nia’s design practice is research led: situated at the intersection of language, place, history and visual culture. Her work includes the design of the first comprehensive collection of Rumi Poetry in Tamil and the co-creation of a large-scale installation for Cambridge University Museum and Botanic Gardens. Most recently Nia was co-recipient of the William Morris Gallery artist in Residence, 2019.

Nia holds a BA from Central Saint Martins, and a MA in History of Design from Royal College of Art/V&A Museum, London.