Taxis in India, particularly in Mumbai, are not only the most convenient form of transport but have also become an iconic piece of culture. Although a lot of attention is given to each taxi by its driver, to make it stand out from his competitors, very little thought is given to the fabric used on the seats. The designs that cover the taxi seats are often dull and forgettable. And with the design talent Mumbai has to offer, this shouldn’t be the case.
Design, as a profession or even simply something studied at school, is unfortunately not widely recognised in India. Older generations don’t understand it, design to them, just performs a function. They don’t know it can create an impact. And with so few spaces for young people to show off their skills, it’s hard to change that perception.
Wieden+Kennedy designer Sanket Avlani put two and two together and started connecting designers with taxi drivers - turning seat covers into canvasses for young Indian designers to show off their design talent and storytelling skills. Each taxi is fitted with an identity label which tells anyone who rides in the taxi, the designer behind the Taxi Fabric, the story of the design and also how to get in contact with them for collaborations or commissions.
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