In India, Mixing Heritage with Modern

People / Places / Products / July 16, 2013

Founded in 2010 and based out of New Delhi, Amalgam is a design studio providing customized, high-end services in architecture, interiors, furniture, lifestyle accessories, and design consultancy. The principals are two young architects, who having studied in India and abroad, are now practicing in Delhi, reinterpreting design as an amalgam of India’s rich cultural heritage and the new modern.  A+A recently interviewed them via email:

What’s the history of the firm?

As architects and designers, design is a way of life for us. From products to buildings, every object requires attention to detail and a crafted approach to design. We felt that traditional craft was waning in India. Indian artisans are recognized across the world, yet contemporary Indian design does not recognize and appreciate the Indian craft and locally available materials. With intent to create a blend of convention and modernity, Amalgam was conceived. Amalgam uses the waning craft of inlay in coloured and composite stone, precious/semi-precious stone and wood to create a blend of traditional and modernity.

Your design philosophy?

Amalgam attempts to redefine the blend of colour and pattern and achieve unison of function and the contemporary Indian modern aesthetic. amalgam emphasises Design as a craft, and views it as a holistic experience; where, from spatial mediation, to lifestyle and accessory design, every product is viewed as an amalgam of tradition and modernity, style and utility, color and pattern, technique and retro style. Amalgam emphasizes on customization & innovation: An array (of patterns, textures, colors) of materials is available, which are amalgamated with the client’s requirements and function. The Amalgam intent is to customize products; we are happy to experiment and innovate.

The Products you design?

All products are designed by us. An extensive range of products is available: Apart from furniture, Amalgam manufactures various home and lifestyle accessories in wood, stone and inlay in MOP and semi-precious stone; Table Tops, cheese platters, trays, coasters, placemats, table mats, and the range is extensive. Apart from the lifestyle accessories, we also design feature walls, furniture and customize for clients. Some of our best selling products are customized tables, The Sushi Paten, Architecture-holic, The virtuous Lotus, The No-smoking Coasters, The Somellier’s Collection and The Stilettoes collection etc.

What kinds of materials do you favor?

The studios’ workshops are based in New Delhi & Agra, where we work directly with craftsmen, innovating with materials and adding to their competencies through the implication of technology. There are different craftsmen who we work with, depending on the product, materials and technique.

What about sustainability?

Amalgam tries to use as much as scrap materials (both in stones/wood), that is a by-product/waste from construction and building sites. Usually this scrap has no utility, and hence we try and use it to create lifestyle products.

And availability?

Amalgam manufactures home accessories and customized furniture for private clients, and has been retailing some of its products at the studio, stores across Delhi, and online. We market our products through Print and Online media and Social media. A lot of our products are popular through word of mouth, and we are happy to sell around the world.

Price Range?

USD $25 and up.

Your target market?

The products cater to all ranges: from coloured composite to semi-precious stones, a diverse range of patterns with trendy, fashionable, modern interpretations, hence creating products for all age groups.

For more information, go to www.amalgam.me

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Michael Welton
I write about architecture, art, and design for national and international publications. I am the author of "Drawing from Practice: Architects and the Meaning of Freehand" (Routledge, 2015), and the former architecture critic for the News & Observer in Raleigh, N.C.




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