Sahil Bagga and Sarthak Sengupta work with the strong belief that ethics, ethnic and ecology can be interwoven with contemporary lifestyle.
Ever since their studio has begun designing products and creating installations, Sahil Bagga and Sarthak Sengupta, two designers with diverse backgrounds, have mastered the art of synchronising their individual creative expressions to create projects and objects that are poetic, pragmatic and ‘ASAP’ (As Sustainable As Possible). The duo conceived their partnership while pursuing their masters in Product Service System Design from Italy. Soon after, they were selected by a world renowned designer, architect Giulio Cappellini, to work on projects for the iconic Italian furniture company, the Poltrona Frau Group. In 2009, they started their own design studio in New Delhi specialising in customising products, furniture, lighting and interiors by the innovative use of Indian craftsmanship and materials.
The life cycle of their products goes through three processes — the way it is extracted, used and disposed — making sure all three are eco-friendly. “Basically we want to bring handicrafts into our modern way of life. Not to see it as a gift or a souvenir but as something we can live with everyday. We feel craft and technology can be married to create objects that suit our lifestyle. Our products have an Indian spirit but international appeal,” promises Sarthak.
Sahil reminiscing about their initial days, says, “Actually, when we did our masters as Indian design students in Milan, we were approached by Italian design companies that were looking to make products with Indian material for Indian markets. We as designers, connect emotionally with our history, home and heritage. So, when the right time came, we decided to start our own company. We used local materials for the contemporary Indian homes, but at the same time made sure that these products can also sell internationally and had a global appeal. This was important as Indian homes and interior spaces are a mix of new and old. After all, we (Indians) love to decorate our homes with elements passed down as family heirlooms.” To give an idea for their innovations, the duo began using handmade textiles instead of leather for the sofas.
Their expertise lies in customising products, furniture, lighting and installations by the creative use of Indian craftsmanship and materials to furnish contemporary spaces such as boutique hotels, high end homes and landmark restaurants. On how they divide work responsibilities, Sahil adds, “Sarthak concentrates more on product development, while I focus on blending Indian nuances to the range of products born out of cross pollination between diverse cultures.”
But all this is not limited to bringing in the local touch to the products made for international clients. Discovering eco-friendly materials and using processes that promote sustainability are also high on their agenda. “We have imbibed sustainability and the value it generates in our products without compromising on aesthetics or functionality,” Sarthak signs off .