In conversation with Raseel Gujral Ansal

Unabashedly a maximalist, she’s known for her work with bold prints and bolder colours

Blame in on her artistic genes (she’s the daughter of noted artist, Satish Gujral) or her reluctance to bow to norms, Raseel has always been a true colourist. Never the one to shy away from breaking the rules, and at times, making a few as she went along. Here, in a freewheeling chat, she shares with us her ideas on design, and more…

What inspires you on an everyday basis?
There is inspiration everywhere you look – films, art and nature; Elements keep your creativity alive, and stimulates the mind.

What is your design philosophy?
I would say, ‘Original Glamour’. It’s important to be original. My father always said, ‘It’s important to forget everything, and start fresh everyday’. That when combined with an ‘oomph’ factor, is exciting, and personally, I find that fascinating.

How do you approach a new project?
The first thing I do is to listen. Letting people talk, even if it’s not relevant. It’s only when you listen to people, and re-engineer their thoughts that you gain a certain sense of understanding and empathy, and that’s when you hit a pulse, which more often than not becomes the start point of any project.

How would you describe your design style?
I would say Contemporary. Even when I do a Classic style project, it still has a contemporary overtone. It is subliminal, but always there.

Describe your work in 5 words.
Original, glamorous, dramatic, timeless and colourful.

Your take on luxury?
One of my friends once told me, ‘Raseel, luxury is your karma’. It’s a sensory experience, luxury needs to make you feel, it needs to move me.

Your advice to buyers new to collecting art – what must one keep in mind while choosing and buying art for the home?
The first thing you need to ask yourself is, ‘Why are you buying it? Is it for value, as an investment, to fill vacant walls, or for the love of it?’ Then zero in on the type of art you wish to buy – a painting, sculpture, installation, etc. And most importantly, decide on your budget. And answer honestly. This was also one of the reasons why I launched the ‘Art by the Metre’ collection, which makes art more accessible to everyone.

A word of advice to young designers?
Dream. It’s actually very simple. When you start to dream, it generates a new dream. It’s a process that will bring you new ideas and thoughts every day.

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