Sangam: the Australia India Design Platform

In 2011, the Australia India Design Platform was looking to start a project of exchange and dialogue between artisans, designers and users in both India and Australia. Ishan Khosla Design was given the task of finding a suitable name for this program and creating a visual manifestation of the name to be used as a logo. We chose the name, Sangam, as it means confluence and although it typically refers to the confluence of the Ganga, Yamuna and the hidden Saraswati rivers in Allahabad (Prayag); it has a broader connotation that is apt in this case — the confluence of artisans, designers and the user. That the user is a metaphor for the hidden Saraswati is an implication that the power of the user in helping sustain crafts is while unacknowledged is actually invaluable. We decided that the visual manifestation of the word mark itself should exemplify its meaning and so we came up with the idea of designing the mark and then working with an artisan to physically make the mark we had envisioned on the computer. This then would epitomize the meaning of confluence.

We decided that the visual manifestation of the word mark itself should exemplify its meaning and so we came up with the idea of designing the mark and then working with an artisan to physically make the mark we had envisioned on the computer. This then would epitomise the meaning of confluence. We worked with Sanju ben of Kukadsar village (via Kala Raksha), who belongs to the Dhebaria Rabari community.

Seen here is the computer generated version we did in Delhi, and the handmade version that Sajnu-ben made in Kachchh. We gave her the freedom to interpret and alter the designs between and within the letters but keeping the letters as similar as possible.

Sangam has been included in the Tokyo Type Director's Club Annual 2015