Bangalore Bounty

Bangalore Bounty

From my one of my favorite interns:

What can be seen through a crowd of millions in a rapidly developing city in India? Really cool design! When my sister asked me to move to Bangalore, India for six months to work on the graphic design end of branding a few of her businesses, I jumped at the chance. Though stressful at times, working here has been a rewarding experience. Business is definitely handled in a different way and design seems to be divided into two worlds. One world is hand-made while the other is digitally produced.


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By far I prefer the hand-made, low-tech works that I see in Bangalore. For example, there are hand-painted signs for every hole-in-the-wall shop - sometimes three or four just for one business. These unique signs usually include English and Kannada names, images relating to the business and written lists of what is offered. I find these signs aesthetically refreshing in contrast to the mass-produced signage that dominates America. Furthermore, I am intrigued by how prevalent this form of communication exists in the Silicon Valley of India. There are a couple of aspects that encourage this practice. A local friend said that the merchants stick to this traditional form of signage because they are not concerned with expanding or aware of the term, 'target market.' They are more interested in attracting local customers through self-expression and gaining their loyalty for generations to come. Now, it is a matter of maintaining a freshly painted sign that communicates, "Keys Copied Here."

On my lunch break when I walk down the street, I see a man standing in front of a Food World chain grocery store with a hand crafted and painted ice cream cart. And I think to myself it is amazing how this extremely deliberate and raw form of communication can co-exist in the glossy 21st century.


By Kayleigh Ryley


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  • Yoiii

    Wow!!!

    It takes an outsider's perspective to notice the obvious sometimes. Thanks for that Kayleigh.

    It amuses me to think about this cycle of art. In the earlier days this art form was used and exploited because machines were expensive. Today a PC + a little clipart + a vinyl sticker is cheaper than paying an artist. Art's become unaffordable now. I hope we (the design community here) can look around and use these artists. May be not for volumes, but for special projects.

    True street artists, and sign painters are now migrating to more lucrative options like making replicas of paintings. I hope the art survives, and does not morph into just DIY (Beware of Dog).

    Here's thanking Kayleigh again and wishing all the best to pure artists.

    Cheers!

    Ankit

  • Kayleigh Ryley

    I have been trying to get over to Chennai. Everyone here is telling me the time to travel around India is December/Jan so hopefully I get to stop there. Thanks for the heads up, I am really looking forward to it now. Yes I do laugh often at the bling posters... and the way they decorate the posters of Bollywood stars. Please POST POST POST yours Anjan!

  • Anjan Das

    Hey Kayleigh,

    Great to see the pics of the signages. If you are in India you should definately visit the city of Chennai, i am sure you'll be blown away by the signs, posters, adverts.(mostly comprises of political figures). I have never seen so many Kitsch signs together in any city across India.

    These sinages & posters are a key to communication in modern India. The Bling, attractive colours makes it picture perfect & sometimes hilarious too.

    I have some awesome pictures of signages which i love to share with you guys.

    I'll try post them soon.

    cheers.

  • lotusbaba

    These pictures that you have here are quite entertaining. I'm waiting for a portfolio on these now.

    J.Bhaskar

  • Darrell

    Really nice post.... But for you shut-ins you can rent "The Darjeeling Limited" from Netflix.

    I hope that the future of American publishing isn't wheat paste. But I guess we'll know better after Nov. 4th.

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