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The story of the year’s best chandelier

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When Prateek Jain and Gautam Seth bought a house in Goa, they decided to design a light installation for their home. That was the starting point for the showstopping Goa Collection, which made its debut at the AD Design Show in October. For the lighting designers and founders of Klove Studio, the collection of chandeliers, sconces, and lamps, is a departure from anything they’ve done before. The carefully crafted pieces have a sculptural quality and combine different textures and elements. We met Prateek at their office in Delhi to talk about the collection and their process.

What was the inspiration behind the new collection?
We wanted to design a light to put in our house in Goa. As a studio, we mostly work with blown glass and metal, but with this light, we wanted to use other materials too, like veneer and rattan. We wanted it to reflect the earthiness of Goa. The idea was inspired by the foliage you see around you when you’re in Goa. The collection is less structured. It’s fresh and vibrant, and the colours are more relaxed.

How was the process of working with new material?
It was very exciting. In the future, we will be exploring a lot more material. We realise a lot of times we don’t get into new materials because controlling the production of materials that are not completely developed by you becomes difficult. But even if you do a small capsule collection with new material, it expands your own design vision. I want to work more with fabric, with terracotta and other new materials.

Can you tell us about the production process behind your work? How long does it take, what happens behind the scenes?
For us, it starts from an idea that goes into a pencil sketch, and then we sit with our guys on the computer and go into a render. From render it moves to the final drawings stage and between that we start sampling things we want to use. A lot of things happen at the prototyping stage, where little elements are finalized. If we’re designing a collection, it takes three to four months, about two months is entirely on paper and computer and the rest is production.

How many people are a part of the process and how collaborative is it?
There is a team of people who work alongside us to make it 

For the designers the process starts from an idea that goes into a pencil sketch, and then into a render on the computer.

happen, in total we are about a hundred. It starts with Gautam and I, and we have about 15 designers. We are like creative directors, we sketch out the intent, give them references, they take a brief from us and come back to us; there’s a lot of back and forth. There are ten blown glass artisans who are from the northeast, from Arunachal Pradesh and Assam especially.

What has the response been to this collection?
We’ve got a very good response, it’s unlike what people expect from us, it’s a fresh take. It’s also commercially easy to adapt into any environment, whether it is a house or a larger building.

When Prateek Jain and Gautam Seth bought a house in Goa, they decided to design a light installation for their home. That was the starting point for the showstopping Goa Collection.

Would part of your work is inspired by Indian crafts and influences?
Everything that we produce is from India and made by Indian artisans. The method, technique, and technology are all Indian. As for the design aesthetic, unless you take references from old architectural styles of India, as a designer it’s impossible to say that you’re doing something that is not global. You can have references to a Middle Eastern civilisation and South American civilisation in your work like we did in our last collection, because you’re exposed to so much and somewhere when you redirect all that into your own creativity, it’s difficult to say, what is from where.

Who are the buyers that invest in a piece from Klove Studio?
People who want our work want that one statement piece that becomes the focal point of the space. We want our work to be classic and evergreen; you shouldn’t have it for a year and then not want it around. We spend a lot of time ensuring that our pieces have functionality and lasting appeal. In that sense, anybody can connect to our work. 

How did you end up working with glass and light?
Gautam and I don’t have any design education. When we both started the studio 15 years back, it was the two of us alone, going from one vendor to another, trying to make wares that we wanted to exhibit. We started with home décor items. It took us about four years before we started making light installations and that transition was obvious, the best way to showcase glass is to light it up.

Your home is one of the most photographed homes in the country, how do you keep things fresh?
I have six dogs in the house, it’s a house that’s meant to be lived in, it’s not a prim and proper space, my dogs have chewed up all the sofas. We change things around, we don’t buy expensive things at all because the dogs destroy everything. I think we have a good eye and we pick up things and we curate the house in a way that makes it looks homely and at the same time well-kept. 

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