Dwell 24: INDO-



Founders of the studio INDO-, Urvi Sharma and Manan Narang create modern furniture pieces that reference traditional dying and weaving methods from their childhoods in New Delhi, India.

The Pilar Tables, Group 2 by INDO-

Sharma‚ 25‚ and Narang‚ 31‚ both grew up in New Delhi but first crossed paths at Rhode Island School of Design. In 2018‚ they founded INDO-‚ a studio that marries craft with modern manufacturing.

“Deconstructing traditional methods‚ finding what makes a process special‚ is at the core of our philosophy.”

“Living in a place where most objects were traditionally handmade and have been replaced by mass-manufactured counterparts makes you aware of what is being lost for the sake of convenience or cost‚” adds Narang.  

The Pilar Tables, Group 2 by INDO-

The Pilar Tables, Group 2 by INDO-

Photo courtesy of INDO-

The duo’s work includes dyed tables influenced by ceramic dip glazing and a credenza referencing the dyeing and weaving process of ikat fabrics. “Craft provides context and identity in a globalized and increasingly homogenous landscape‚” says Sharma.

Read about Sharma’s early memories of making pyramids with toothpicks and why Narang longs for a home that is a blank canvas, plus more, below.

Hometowns: We are both originally from New Delhi, India.

Current Locations: Providence, Rhode Island and New Delhi

Describe what you make in 140 characters. We create contemporary furniture and design objects by experimenting with traditional and modern manufacturing methods.

What’s the last thing you designed? A detail for preventing framed mirrors from damage during shipping.  —Narang

Do you have a daily creative ritual? I like jigsaw puzzles, because they help me clear my head. —Sharma

How do you procrastinate? I binge-watch YouTube videos. —Narang

What everyday object would you like to redesign? Why? Floor Lamps. I have yet to find one that I really like. —Sharma

Who are your heroes (in design, in life, or in both)? In design: Frank Lloyd Wright for demonstrating that age does not limit creative ability; in life: my parents for teaching me discipline and what can be achieved by taking things slow and steady. —Narang

What skill would you most like to learn? I would like to learn speed reading and how to sew. —Sharma

What is your most treasured possession? A watch gifted by my dad. I don’t always wear it, but I take it with me everywhere I go. —Narang

What’s your earliest memory of an encounter with design? When I was a child, I made four-tiered pyramids out of toothpicks and balls of Babybel cheese wax at my grandmother’s house. —Sharma

What contemporary design trend do you despise? Homogeneity. Everything looks so similar; there’s no sense of place or identity. —Narang

The Ikat Credenza by INDO-

The Ikat Credenza by INDO-

Photo courtesy of INDO-

Are you left-handed or right-handed? We’re both right-handed.

Finish this statement: All design should…be contextual. —Sharma

I sketch with a…pen. —Narang

I work best with…a podcast. —Sharma

I do my best work…sometime in the evening. —Narang

Our studio is…a hive of productive clutter.

Instagram is…a homogenizing force in the design world. —Sharma

Choose one: Bauhaus, Memphis, or Brutalist? Bauhaus —Narang

Rank the following: (1) Fun, (2) Function, and (3) Form —Sharma

Choose one: Less is More, Just Enough is Enough, or More is More? Just Enough is Enough —Narang

Choose one: Past, Present, or Future? Present —Sharma

If you had to pick a favorite material, what would it be? Wood —Narang

What’s in your dream house? There should be a lot of space, light, and natural ventilation. Also, a space that is a good canvas from which to make it my own. —Narang

You can follow Sharma and Narang on the INDO- website or on Instagram

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