“Design ni Dukaan” colloquially means ‘a shop for design’. They are a multidisciplinary studio based in Ahmedabad, Gujarat; focusing on the concept of ‘design’ in totality and without distinction. This encompasses scales from architecture to furniture projects. Here, like-minded people and thoughts converge from which evolves a singularity: design.
They are a craftsmen-based studio and work closely with their carpenters and artisans, attempting to revive age old dying techniques and incorporate them into the current context. Their contemporary forms are shaped by our traditional roots: once the essence of an entity is realised, it can be deconstructed and interpreted in numerous ways while still adhering to purest form. Details are essential, the subtle elements that define the output. Time and effort elapse in these nuances; adding details, resolving them etc. but they believe that a design matures and refines itself only through patience and perseverance.
They don’t necessarily conform to the ideas and norms of the current scenario of design that is being practiced globally however we draw influences from the simplest things such as childhood experiences, chance interactions and other miscellaneous occurrences that are so intrinsic to our Indian culture. Those who work with them are from different parts of the country and bring their own share of stories, backgrounds and culture which contribute for a wider perspective of design.
The Studio Extension:
Since the inception, Design ni Dukaan and their principal, Veeram Shah, never wanted an 'office'. With time, the studio has transformed into a community-based practice, seamlessly. And in that small studio, they have produced a lot of work. They have people from all over India working and almost living in the small space they had, desks became beds, sometimes even chairs were enough.
With time, they realized the need for an extended space to the studio. A space to think, a space for conversation, a space to even cook, eat together and rest. A space that would complete the sense of community that they have evolved.
They extended the space from idle (and ram-shackled!) old servant's quarters. The challenge was to keep it in a temporary structure form, yet lend finesse on a tight budget. A lounge with seating for three people, a personal desk, a bathroom with a shower, a pantry, a resting daybed, and walls for art had to all fit in the 450 sq. ft. space. In that sense, it was to be a self contained unit - a sort of very tiny bungalow. Natural light was a priority but the structure couldn’t be opened on one side because of the road and the other being the compound wall.
They detailed and executed every element to be homogeneous with the structure and architectural space. The design and execution was completed in 2.5 months flat and in the middle of monsoon.
Firm Name: Design ni Dukaan
Type: Architecture, Interior Design & Furniture
Location: Ahmedabad, Gujarat
Principal Architect: Veeram Shah
Studio Photography: The Fishy Project