Session with Ms. Jahnavi Lakhota Nandan


In India, design as a concept is not restricted to the aesthetic appeal of an object rather, in order to understand objects from the perspective of design one has to re-imagine design itself. The importance of an object’s design is judged by its significance in everyday life and is majorly influenced by its users.

For many years the design of quintessential objects has remained unchanged while they are still in use by the masses. Some of them are age old practices, like the ‘Agarbatti’ also known as Incense Sticks and the ‘Lota’ a metal container for carrying water. These objects have been part of every household but interestingly their design has not undergone a major change.

Pukka India otherwise translated to Purely Indian by Ms. Jahnavi Lakhota Nandan is a book that brings together such objects that have survived generations together and are now the most coveted symbols that represent the essence of India.

The author recently visited the IIAD campus where she interacted with the faculty and students and took them on a nostalgic and informative journey of the objects listed in her book. She spoke about the vibrant and colourful design icons ranging from a kulhad to a banta that have been beautifully captured and described in the book amongst a list of others. She discussed how each of these hundred objects compliments the Indian nature of every object and how they have impacted the evolution of design, culture and in turn, every Indian.

About Jahnavi Lakhota Nandan

A perfume designer by profession, Jahnavi has her own initiative by the name, The Perfume Library, where she indulges in creating perfumes based on memories. She has studied architectural design at Japan’s School of Art and Design. Being an avid traveller, she get an opportunity to acquaint quite a few people and the question she always poses to them is about that one object that is always with them. This inspired her to the journey of discovering everyday objects/designs in India that people hold close to their hearts.

Enquiry 2020