The Offbeat Sari

The Offbeat Sari explores the radical 21st Century overhaul of the sari, shedding a rare spotlight on contemporary Indian fashion for UK audiences.Curated by Priya Khanchandani and designed by Studio MUTT with Sthuthi Ramesh, the show presents the sari as a site for design innovation, an expression of identity and resistance, and a crafted object carrying layers of new materialities.Around 60 examples of trailblazing saris from the last decade are shown in an exhibition asserting one of today’s most important global fashion stories, the true nature of which is little-known beyond South Asia.Photography by Andy Stagg and Tian Khee Siong

The Offbeat Sari

The Offbeat Sari explores the radical 21st Century overhaul of the sari, shedding a rare spotlight on contemporary Indian fashion for UK audiences.Curated by Priya Khanchandani and designed by Studio MUTT with Sthuthi Ramesh, the show presents the sari as a site for design innovation, an expression of identity and resistance, and a crafted object carrying layers of new materialities.Around 60 examples of trailblazing saris from the last decade are shown in an exhibition asserting one of today’s most important global fashion stories, the true nature of which is little-known beyond South Asia.Photography by Andy Stagg and Tian Khee Siong

The Offbeat Sari

The Offbeat Sari explores the radical 21st Century overhaul of the sari, shedding a rare spotlight on contemporary Indian fashion for UK audiences.Curated by Priya Khanchandani and designed by Studio MUTT with Sthuthi Ramesh, the show presents the sari as a site for design innovation, an expression of identity and resistance, and a crafted object carrying layers of new materialities.Around 60 examples of trailblazing saris from the last decade are shown in an exhibition asserting one of today’s most important global fashion stories, the true nature of which is little-known beyond South Asia.Photography by Andy Stagg and Tian Khee Siong

Context + Process

The design explores the shifting social and political contexts of contemporary Indian fashion, removing the sari from traditional domestic environments and placing it in the new urban sites of the festival, the street and the workshop. The journey through the 3 distinct spaces is created through characterful compositions of colour, material palettes, graphic design and lighting, and divided by monumental block-printed fabric walls.From entering the exhibition through a bright orange antechamber space with a title graphic installation, the visitor passes through three curatorial sections in three distinct miniature worlds, referencing the new contexts of the contemporary sari.The process of draping a sari is referenced in the dividing walls with sari-like fabric rolls becoming lightweight walls between spaces, and a recurring graphic theme of a dancing line representing the many folds, tucks and wraps of draping a sari.

Context + Process

The design explores the shifting social and political contexts of contemporary Indian fashion, removing the sari from traditional domestic environments and placing it in the new urban sites of the festival, the street and the workshop. The journey through the 3 distinct spaces is created through characterful compositions of colour, material palettes, graphic design and lighting, and divided by monumental block-printed fabric walls.From entering the exhibition through a bright orange antechamber space with a title graphic installation, the visitor passes through three curatorial sections in three distinct miniature worlds, referencing the new contexts of the contemporary sari.The process of draping a sari is referenced in the dividing walls with sari-like fabric rolls becoming lightweight walls between spaces, and a recurring graphic theme of a dancing line representing the many folds, tucks and wraps of draping a sari.

Context + Process

The design explores the shifting social and political contexts of contemporary Indian fashion, removing the sari from traditional domestic environments and placing it in the new urban sites of the festival, the street and the workshop. The journey through the 3 distinct spaces is created through characterful compositions of colour, material palettes, graphic design and lighting, and divided by monumental block-printed fabric walls.From entering the exhibition through a bright orange antechamber space with a title graphic installation, the visitor passes through three curatorial sections in three distinct miniature worlds, referencing the new contexts of the contemporary sari.The process of draping a sari is referenced in the dividing walls with sari-like fabric rolls becoming lightweight walls between spaces, and a recurring graphic theme of a dancing line representing the many folds, tucks and wraps of draping a sari.

Characterful Compositions

The first section highlights designers in India who have fuelled the experimentation with the sari in recent years, pushing boundaries through the creation of new genres and embracing it as an object of playful expression. Festival stages and flower garlands are referenced in the design - tiered plinths with visible lattice construction utilise the tall gallery spaces for dynamic mannequin displays, while colourful LED strips and soft gradient environmental lighting adding moments of intense colours to a pastel-toned space. The role of the wearer is examined in the second section, showing how the sari can become a vessel for conveying individuality, empower the female body, and how it can be worn as a tool for protest. A facsimile street-scene constructed from honeycomb cardboard references ad-hoc urbanism and creates alleyways to frame views of the content. The final section looks at the sari as a textile, showing how the weave, texture, colour and surface form a rich canvas for the incredible creativity of craftspeople. Shown in a tactile workshop setting, the saris are hung democratically from a continuous rail without reference to the body.

Characterful Compositions

The first section highlights designers in India who have fuelled the experimentation with the sari in recent years, pushing boundaries through the creation of new genres and embracing it as an object of playful expression. Festival stages and flower garlands are referenced in the design - tiered plinths with visible lattice construction utilise the tall gallery spaces for dynamic mannequin displays, while colourful LED strips and soft gradient environmental lighting adding moments of intense colours to a pastel-toned space. The role of the wearer is examined in the second section, showing how the sari can become a vessel for conveying individuality, empower the female body, and how it can be worn as a tool for protest. A facsimile street-scene constructed from honeycomb cardboard references ad-hoc urbanism and creates alleyways to frame views of the content. The final section looks at the sari as a textile, showing how the weave, texture, colour and surface form a rich canvas for the incredible creativity of craftspeople. Shown in a tactile workshop setting, the saris are hung democratically from a continuous rail without reference to the body.

Characterful Compositions

The first section highlights designers in India who have fuelled the experimentation with the sari in recent years, pushing boundaries through the creation of new genres and embracing it as an object of playful expression. Festival stages and flower garlands are referenced in the design - tiered plinths with visible lattice construction utilise the tall gallery spaces for dynamic mannequin displays, while colourful LED strips and soft gradient environmental lighting adding moments of intense colours to a pastel-toned space. The role of the wearer is examined in the second section, showing how the sari can become a vessel for conveying individuality, empower the female body, and how it can be worn as a tool for protest. A facsimile street-scene constructed from honeycomb cardboard references ad-hoc urbanism and creates alleyways to frame views of the content. The final section looks at the sari as a textile, showing how the weave, texture, colour and surface form a rich canvas for the incredible creativity of craftspeople. Shown in a tactile workshop setting, the saris are hung democratically from a continuous rail without reference to the body.

Characterful Compositions

The first section highlights designers in India who have fuelled the experimentation with the sari in recent years, pushing boundaries through the creation of new genres and embracing it as an object of playful expression. Festival stages and flower garlands are referenced in the design - tiered plinths with visible lattice construction utilise the tall gallery spaces for dynamic mannequin displays, while colourful LED strips and soft gradient environmental lighting adding moments of intense colours to a pastel-toned space. The role of the wearer is examined in the second section, showing how the sari can become a vessel for conveying individuality, empower the female body, and how it can be worn as a tool for protest. A facsimile street-scene constructed from honeycomb cardboard references ad-hoc urbanism and creates alleyways to frame views of the content. The final section looks at the sari as a textile, showing how the weave, texture, colour and surface form a rich canvas for the incredible creativity of craftspeople. Shown in a tactile workshop setting, the saris are hung democratically from a continuous rail without reference to the body.

Characterful Compositions

The first section highlights designers in India who have fuelled the experimentation with the sari in recent years, pushing boundaries through the creation of new genres and embracing it as an object of playful expression. Festival stages and flower garlands are referenced in the design - tiered plinths with visible lattice construction utilise the tall gallery spaces for dynamic mannequin displays, while colourful LED strips and soft gradient environmental lighting adding moments of intense colours to a pastel-toned space. The role of the wearer is examined in the second section, showing how the sari can become a vessel for conveying individuality, empower the female body, and how it can be worn as a tool for protest. A facsimile street-scene constructed from honeycomb cardboard references ad-hoc urbanism and creates alleyways to frame views of the content. The final section looks at the sari as a textile, showing how the weave, texture, colour and surface form a rich canvas for the incredible creativity of craftspeople. Shown in a tactile workshop setting, the saris are hung democratically from a continuous rail without reference to the body.

Characterful Compositions

The first section highlights designers in India who have fuelled the experimentation with the sari in recent years, pushing boundaries through the creation of new genres and embracing it as an object of playful expression. Festival stages and flower garlands are referenced in the design - tiered plinths with visible lattice construction utilise the tall gallery spaces for dynamic mannequin displays, while colourful LED strips and soft gradient environmental lighting adding moments of intense colours to a pastel-toned space. The role of the wearer is examined in the second section, showing how the sari can become a vessel for conveying individuality, empower the female body, and how it can be worn as a tool for protest. A facsimile street-scene constructed from honeycomb cardboard references ad-hoc urbanism and creates alleyways to frame views of the content. The final section looks at the sari as a textile, showing how the weave, texture, colour and surface form a rich canvas for the incredible creativity of craftspeople. Shown in a tactile workshop setting, the saris are hung democratically from a continuous rail without reference to the body.

Credits

Location

London, UK

Client

Design Museum

Date

2022–23

2D Design

Sthuthi Ramesh Design

Lighting design

Beam LD

Contractor

Raskl

Area

325sqm

Phototography

Andy Stagg, Tian Khee Siong

Lead designer

STUDIO MUTT

Exhibition curation

Priya Khanchandani + Rashmi Varma

Credits

Location

London, UK

Client

Design Museum

Date

2022–23

2D Design

Sthuthi Ramesh Design

Lighting design

Beam LD

Contractor

Raskl

Area

325sqm

Phototography

Andy Stagg, Tian Khee Siong

Lead designer

STUDIO MUTT

Exhibition curation

Priya Khanchandani + Rashmi Varma

Credits

Location

London, UK

Client

Design Museum

Date

2022–23

2D Design

Sthuthi Ramesh Design

Lighting design

Beam LD

Contractor

Raskl

Area

325sqm

Phototography

Andy Stagg, Tian Khee Siong

Lead designer

STUDIO MUTT

Exhibition curation

Priya Khanchandani + Rashmi Varma

Back to projects

prev

/

next

STUDIO MUTT LTD. 91 KEMPSTON STREET, LIVERPOOL, L3 8HE, UNITED KINGDOM    HELLO@STUDIOMUTT.COM