The Year 2020
...When an unprecedented void compelled us to rethink and restructure our lifestyles.
Design Week, held in April, at the height of a world-under-lockdown, is a curation of new and old works across disciplines, that respond to the human spirit, its needs and beliefs.
Cardboard Quarantine Beds | Foley Design | 2020
In response to the pandemic, the creators adapted a prior work-in-progress paper furniture line into a flat pack cardboard quarantine bed, catering to the need of the hour and aiding the overwhelmed healthcare infrastructure.
The bottom structural unit compresses into a compact stack, and the top flat unit folds down to serve as an outer packaging, forming a light suitcase of sorts for the ease of transportation.
Cardboard Quarantine Beds | Foley Design | 2020
Cooking Mud Pot | 2020 | Martin Bereciartua
While the world stood still, the designer chose to lay emphasis on spreading warmth within communities.
In a collaboration with North Argentinian artisans, he designed a cook-and-serve pot that symbolizes a happy universal belly, in clay and remolded aluminum.
The pot's handles symbolize hands that protectively wrap the universal belly or the earth. The handles also double up as ladle holders. An aluminum stand keeps the hot pot off the surface, while also elevating the belly pot on a pedestal.
What Now? | 2020 | Ron Arad Studio
This piece was created on the 31st December 2020, marking Britain’s last day in Europe. Newspapers that came out that day, stating the official news of ‘Brexit’, are embedded into a chair questioning ‘What Now?’.
The question feels alive and unanswered even today.
The Refugee Collection | Esna Su | 2015
A prolific body piece, handcrafted using Turkish techniques, explores the issues of shelter, identity and memory of Syrian refugees, shaken in the context of political instability.
The piece resonates with the uncertainties brought on by the pandemic to various strata.
"There are more people displaced now than at any other time since the Second World War." - Esna Su
Super Heros in Mumbai | 2020 | Mrinalini Majumdar
The city of dreams, a center for opportunities and a nucleus for the arts - the spirit of Mumbai is invincible. On the other hand, its deceptive infrastructure, exhausted sanitation, rising pollution levels and the shortfall of housing makes Mumbai on the verge of imploding.
Battling the two predicaments in her mind, the artist envisages ‘Super Heroes in Mumbai’ as an ode to the silent workers like the Police and Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation, without whom living in Mumbai would be a nightmare.
Spread Love Like Virus | 2020 | Rahul V Mathew
As a graphic response to COVID-19, an awareness campaign juxtaposes precautionary products onto artist Raja Ravi Varma’s widely recognized characters in everyday settings.
Rahul Mathew’s surrealist dreams garner much attention and manage to use graphic design to convey the need of the hour, with non-linguistic, visual communication.
The Church of Light | 1989 | Tadao Ando | Osaka, Japan
Ando’s masterpiece finds relevance even today, especially in these unsettling times, when the world seeks refuge in faith.
Design, spirituality and nature are brought into a single structure, with his dramatic use of opposites - light and shadow, volume and void, man and nature.
Ando, a self-taught architect, is recognized for his expansive architecture, characterized by the seamless amalgamation of Japanese design and his own intrinsically modern approach of building and landscape.
Gwangju Reading Room | 2011 | David Adjaye and Taiye Selasi
The Gwangju Reading Room project is a collaboration between architect David Adjaye and writer Taiye Selasi and was initiated in 2011 for the Gwangju Design Biennale, from the conviction that "Monuments and Memorials are society's way of marking our triumph over failure."
This public library is an open-ended memorial to the dead, and speaks today for the millions of lives lost to the pandemic. It houses 200 books on freedom, equality and human rights in memory of the 200 students that were killed in a pro-democracy demonstration in South Korea.
L’Abre Blanc // The White Tree | 2020
Sou Fujimoto Architects, Nicolas Laisné Associés, Manal Rachdi Oxo Architects
In a year when the yearning for outdoors accelerated, a team of Japanese and French architects brought to fruition the need-of-the-hour: a building that blurs boundaries between indoors and the outdoors.
Cantilevered balconies protrude in different directions like leaves from a seventeen storey commercial and residential building, facilitating interaction at multiple levels while also cueing Montpellier’s tradition of outdoor living.
Virus Deterrent Mask | 2020 | Digantika Bose
This dust-free and virus-deterrent inhaler mask has been designed and prototyped by the youngest contributor, a seventeen year old from West Bengal, who aspires to become a scientist to continue innovating in the field of healthcare advancement.
By applying her high school knowledge of physics to practical use, Digantika found that when negative ions come in contact with the air around us they destroy most viruses. To ensure complete virus destruction, a soap-water mixture has been added to two chemical filters that purify exhaled air which may contain remaining traces of the virus.
Her pursuit of creating a simple and effective solution to help patients affected by COVID-19 fight the virus has been acknowledged by the Ministry of Health and is in the process of being launched in the Indian market.