DEKHO is an anthology of inspirational conversations with designers in India, probing their stories for cues to the development of design in India and highlighting approaches that are unique to designing for India.
Faces Of Dekho
On 12, MP Ranjan reflects on his experiences as a design educator and evangelist, driven by his deep conviction in the fact that design-led intervention can bring wonderful changes for India. On 38, late Professor Raghunath K Joshi makes a case for sound as a precursor to written word and talks of the Deshanagari project—an ambitious undertaking which explored the possibilities of typesetting in Indian languages based on the way they are spoken. Neelakash Kshetrimayum takes us on a personal journey to the hills of Manipur on 58, where a dying native script Meitei Mayek is finding a new life with design interventions like his type design projects. Lakshmi Murthy, on 80, does not subscribe to a top-down, generalised approach to developmental communication. She offers valuable insights through her work in rural India—co-designing effective, localiSed models for social communication with the user. On 102, Orijit Sen and Gurpreet Sidhu, founding partners of the iconic Indian brand—People Tree—celebrate the intelligence of the head and the hand and talk about craft as their approach to design. Ram Sinam and Sarita Sundar look beyond the brief at their design consultancy, Trapeze, on 134—elevating dialogues in spatial design from what is said to how it is said. Amardeep Behl wants you to be uncomfortable on 164. Restlessness, he says, is the mother of all design, and in the course of the conversation, walks you through the intricate spatial narratives created by his practice DesignHabit. On 204, Wolfgang Weingart, known for his explosive rejection of the Swiss Style and radical experiments, continues to inspire new forms of expression. Stefan Sagmeister, despite the absence of an introduction on 226, shares his life’s lessons with honesty and zeal, tinged as always with his inimitable sense of humour. 242 is Casey Reas sharing his fascination with the idea of emergence and taking us along a journey exploring the binaries of naturally evolving and synthetic systems.
Praise for Dekho
We are excited to be amongst the inspiring projects in the Designs Of The Year Shortlist. See the press release.
»This is not a picture book of slick brands or vernacular truck signs. Instead, it is a thoughtful exploration of the processes and motivations behind a range of practices, from typeface development for diverse linguistic communities to co-design projects with rural craftspeople.« More.
»There are so few books out there whose content actually mirrors the subject they deal with. Dekho, with its design elements, layouts, co-habitation of the visual and the textual, and its sheer playfulness, tells the viewer-reader what the book he is holding in his hands is about even before he starts reading any of the pieces in it.« More.
Rana Siddiqui Zaman
»(On the exhibition.) The room, full of cardboard boxes placed as triple deckers, at first seemed incongruous. But a close scrutiny unravelled a unique world of design and content conversation — as colour printouts pasted on them.« More.
»This book is an important design introduction for a country bearing traditions, colonial baggage and cut-and-paste pastiche that passes for creativity.« More.
»DEKHO offers me, at least, a different view and more hopeful feeling. It incorporates rather than segregates, it embraces rather than pushes away. It accepts the old and new, the modern and vernacular – in short it seeks to harness the power of design through the joy of design.«
Prof. H Kumar Vyas
»There has been a long felt need among the Indian design fraternity for a platform to share each other’s work, not just as narratives of design solutions, but at the deeper level of concept building and problem solving process. It is good to know that DEKHO is going to do exactly that.«
»At Kyoorius, I was excited to see the prototype of a new Indian design book, called Dekho. Conceived, designed and published by the Delhi-based design-thinking consultancy Codesign, Dekho has inspiring conversations with Indian designers from different fields (crafts, new media, outer space) and tries to capture their practices.« More.
Brown Paper Bag
»Supporting these insights are pretty Rorschach -like colour blots, drippy ink, and pop coloured pictures of Indian craftsmen and women, making it an attractive book for your shelf. Go on, grab some eyeballs. We know you’re worth a Dekho.« More.
Authored, designed and published in 2012 by Codesign, a brand and communication design practice based in India. Codesign is also involved in the creation of independent content in the area of Indian design and visual language, and is the co-founder of the UnBox Festival.