THE CARAVAN at HARVEY NICHOLS (part 3)
Last year, around this time , I received a phone call to curate the ‘Urban Contemporary' segment of an Indian themed (The Caravan) festival that luxury store Harvey Nichols, Riyadh, was to host.
It was such a rush to be asked to associate with a brand like Harvey Nichols as they have the world’s most prestigious brands under their roof.
The process took a while , as the exhibition was in Saudi Arabia, that meant a lot of restrictions and limitations on to what could be displayed.
The Urban contemporary segment was essentially emerging and upcoming , fashion, accessory and home decor brands.
While in my experience with MASALA CHAI, I’ve come across 100’s of independent brands, it was a challenge to curate something for the Arab market , which had to be contemporary but also have a very distinct Indian flavour to them. And let’s not forget, it was at Harvey Nichols in Riyadh, so a touch of luxe was essential too.
Aesthetically , they had to have a crossover appeal to the expats and Indian diaspora of Riyadh , as well as appeal to the local arabs. No products with images of people, dogs or pigs were allowed. So on and so forth.
Contacting and communicating with over 40 brands was whittled down to 25 brands and further edited to 10 brands, that met all their requirements .
I present to you the final cut :
In the fashion segment, first we have Ka.Sha : A brand that interprets the multi layered quality of India in a street style format. The garments are unique separates that are made from natural dyes .
Next , Divya Anand , her designs capture boho chic with luxe. The textiles are rich hand embroidered pieces , that are airy and flirty.
Finally, Preethi Wanchoo’s Ek Kharkhana, focuses on reviving indigenous craft traditions like hand block printing , hand embroidery and fabric explorations.