sink at the upstairs studio.

Lekha Washington with “The Drop”
Demonstrating the “The Pink Sink”
Lekha Washington designed the very interesting and innovative, The Sink Collection. A functional piece of furniture but looks far from the real design. You can drop yourself comfortable in what looks like stretchy fabric to support your kilos. The Sink Collection along with her new collection – The Bent Light is now housed at her new space, The Upstairs Studio. A 150 year old bungalow in Bandra that has been converted into an ideating and showcase space.
We catch up with Lekha to know what keeps her ticking.


1.How did ‘The Sink Collection’ get conceived?
The Sink collection started with the Pink Sink which was a product prototyped in 2002, 11 years ago, with a course in NID called “bad design” – Things that act in other ways that they imply they do. The Idea of the sink collection was to make art objects furniture, things that look like there’s no way you can sit on them- until you find out they are quite comfortable!

2.What is your vision with the Upstairs Studio? 
The Upstairs studio is where I, and sometimes like minded people, try out new things. It’s where I try out a new product, play with it and let others play with it. It’s where a stand-up comic might try a new piece. It’s essentially a space for meeting of minds.

3.What do we expect from your new project ‘Bent Light’?
I’m working on unusual lighting ideas that give the user complete control on how they would like the form of their product to be. So I’m playing with highly pliable lighting pieces.

4.You have transitioned from an Actress to Product Designer. How would you describe your experiences?
Considering that I have a Tamil film releasing next month and another one to be shot in November, it’s not really a transition but more a parallel career. I would describe it as quite complimentary- Art and product design for me is a solo sport, while an actor gives himself or herself to another’s vision and has to be a team player. I love the balance both these careers bring me.

5.Your go to for design information (magazine / website / books)?
All of the above. Also life.

6.When starting a project what is key to keep in mind?
I don’t know about other people, but I am quite keen on a great idea. The rest, for me, follows.

7.Architect or Designer from the past you admire the most?
Gaudi and Karim Rashid.

8.Current Architect or Designer you admire the most?
Zaha Hadid and way too many designers on this list.

9.Materials you cant get enough of?
I’m a material addict- I love material, always have. From resin and silicone to stainless steel, I guess you could say I’m a hopeless material-ist! 🙂

10.What is your opinion on Design in India today?
Indian product design is at a very nascent stage and has a long way to go. Although we do have a very rich heritage of craft and processes, it’s a shame that internationally, India is not on the map yet as a go-to space for original thinking. It’s time to change that.

The Upstairs Studio

Where:
The Upstairs Studio,
14, Veronica Street,
Ranwar Village, 
Off Hill Road, 
Bandra (W), Mumbai.

Tel:
+91 98920 84870 

Photographs courtesy The Upstairs Studio

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The Crew is our team of Design Junkies! We have an unhealthy obsession with Design!