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We two, ours two: towards building an Indian graphic design history

Ramanathan, Rathna (2013) We two, ours two: towards building an Indian graphic design history. In: Towards Global Histories of Design: Postcolonial Perspectives, Design History Society Annual Conference, 5-8 September 2013, Ahmedabad.

Type of Research: Conference, Symposium or Workshop Item
Creators: Ramanathan, Rathna

Whilst graphic design history is an emerging and recognised academic discipline, Indian graphic design history is almost non-existent and lacks proper acknowledgement as a field of study. Recently, India as a nation has begun to impassionedly acknowledge the importance of design as has been evidenced in recent nation-wide efforts at designing design education, practices and professions. As Dilnot (2009) has described, the territory of design is at least three things: what was and is actualized, what could have been actualized and was not, and what remains to be actualized. This paper makes the argument that constructing a graphic design history of India will enrich India’s endeavours by providing the missing link, i.e. an understanding of what makes design in India distinctive. Using specific examples from the history of the book and printed ephemera in India, the paper reflects on possible considerations and approaches to envisioning a graphic design history of India. It argues against a definition of graphic design that is solely ‘modern’ and typically ‘industrial’ and for a definition that embraces graphic design as a commercial practice in India that has classical (pre 1800) origins. The paper also illustrates the importance of acknowledging a pluralistic approach to graphic design history and one that acknowledges graphic design as a social, technological, economic, political and cultural practice and product.

Official Website: http://www.dhs-nid2013.in
Keywords/subjects not otherwise listed: History of Graphic Design
Your affiliations with UAL: Colleges > Central Saint Martins
Date: 6 September 2013
Event Location: Ahmedabad
Date Deposited: 09 Jul 2014 15:30
Last Modified: 09 Jul 2014 15:30
Item ID: 7131
URI: https://ualresearchonline.arts.ac.uk/id/eprint/7131

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