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Ranjan Bordoloi: Name to know

JUN 15, 2016 | By Raisa Tolia
From Assam to Milan, designer Ranjan Bordoloi’s work has travelled across the globe. The IIT graduate, whose Pitoloi seater was presented by Cappellini Next at the Milan Furniture Fair 2015, is known to closely work with artisans to give local arts and crafts a contemporary twist. His Godrej Design Lab (GDL) 2016 winning Kaathfula chair draws inspiration from mushrooms. When asked how he was motivated by the fleshy fungus, he said, “Mushrooms have a very soft and organic look.” Since most of his previous works involved using  hard materials like metal and cane, he wanted to create something radically different and functional.
As he didn’t have a production facility of his own, Ranjan used Godrej Design Lab’s factory factory in Vikroli, Mumbai to make the first prototype. Speaking on his experience at their factory, he avers, “Although, there was no constraint in terms of material choice, we had only 20 -25 days to get everything done. They have an amazing team of in-house designers, engineers and workers, whose expertise lay in making upholstered sofas and chairs.” After making around 10 models he finally decided to use a combination of two foams – EVA for stability and PU for softness. The chair is fabricated with individual layers of foam, upholstered separately and then assembled since single upholstery would hide the layers.
Ranjan describes his GDL journey as a great experience. “The best part was it bestowed the freedom of making mistakes. I’m grateful to the entire team of GDL and ELLE DECOR India for this platform. We, as young designers, always look at the West for opportunities and support  from their manufactures, design galleries and museums. GDL is first of its kind in India, which is a positive sign for all of us,” he adds. He plans on expanding the line with a collection of ottoman, chairs, benches etc.
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