02 Feb 2019 | Design Thinking

Design Dekko: A networking platform for architects and the design community

Over 350 architects, interior designers and allied professionals were present at the launch of the first-of-its-kind platform in Mumbai
Anil Verma, Executive Director & President, Godrej & Boyce, at the launch of Design Dekko

Design Dekko, a unique brand-agnostic platform for architects, interior designers, and the allied community, was launched at Godrej One in Vikhroli on February 2, 2019. Renowned personalities from the design industry were part of the event. These included architects Brinda Somaya and Nandini Sampat; conservation architect Vikas Dilawari; renowned photographer Jatin Kampani; Karishma Bajaj, Owner of the Red Blue Yellow furniture store; Santha Gour from Planet 3 Studios; celebrity interior designer Shabnam Gupta from The Orange Lane; Kamna Malik, Brand Director, India Design ID; and Darshan Gandhi, Global Design Head, Godrej Consumer Products Limited (GCPL). They were joined by over 350 professionals and students from design schools. 

Striking the right balance 
Ms Somaya and Ms Sampat delivered the keynote address on ‘A Family in Design’ and emphasised on how architecture is a demanding profession. “Architecture incorporates a range of things such as filmmaking, graphic design, photography and archaeology, which all go hand in hand for the final product. It is about collaborating across different verticals,” said Ms Sampat.

Keynote by architects Brinda Somaya and Nandini Sampat on 'A Family in Design'

Ms Somaya also urged budding architects to get involved in conservation of heritage structures. “Building something new is always more encouraging and exciting for younger professionals in the architecture and design space. However, there are 10,000 monuments listed by the Archaeological Survey of India. We have to create new buildings, but also focus on conservation at the same time.” 

Mr Dilawari echoed her views and elaborated on balancing development and conservation. “We have to shift the focus of our city from redevelopment to urban renewable. We have to integrate what we have inherited and blend it with our development goals,” he said.

Namrata Mehra in conversation with Vikas Dilawari on 'Adaptive Re-use'

Gender no bar
A power-packed panel discussion focused on an interesting topic -- ‘Women in Design.’ Ms Gupta of The Orange Lane, Ms Bajaj from Red Blue and Yellow, Ms Gour of Planet 3 Studios, and Ms Gandhi from GCPL were in conversation with Ms Malik.

Ms Gour spoke about the biases she faces, “I run my studio with my husband but everybody associates him with it. Though I am proud of my husband, we need to stand up against these biases.” Reiterating the need to give due credit to women in the design industry, Ms Bajaj said, "Empowering women is paramount. Appreciate your peers who are women and let them know you are proud of them." Ms Gupta agreed with her, “The change needs to start at home. My two boys have seen me work; they will grow up respecting women at work and accept the fact.”

Shabnam Gupta, Darshan Gandhi, Karishma Bajaj and Santha Gour in a panel discussion with Kamna Malik on 'Women in Design'

A unique collaboration
Spearheaded by the Godrej Group, Design Dekko aims to provide a platform for architects, interior designers and allied professionals to network, showcase and collaborate within the community and with brands. 

Kamna Malik in conversation with ace photographer Jatin Kampani on 'Perspective on Spaces'

“The Godrej Group has always been at the vanguard of creating platforms that foster engagement and collaboration. Design Dekko is a platform that celebrates spaces and the minds that shape them,” says Sujit Patil, Vice President & Head - Corporate Brand and Communications, Godrej Group. He adds, “It aims to create a community for professionals from architecture, interior design and allied sectors. The phenomenal response at the launch shows the merit in creating a platform that is for and by the community.”

Sujit Patil speaks about Design Dekko, the newly launched online platform for the architect and interior designer (AID) community

DesignDekko.com also has a presence on the digital and social media universe. Follow Design Dekko on social media channels like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.