JODI from the start has been an exploration in print, colour and textile. What we love so much about our culture is how art is so part of the fabric of Indian society.
Developing and researching graphic languages and illustration styles is something we do constantly. In the process we came across two girls whose works we’ve been crushing on for a while. Illustrator and graphic designer, Pia Alize Hazarika & Curator and Program Manager at Khoj India, Radha Mahendru.
Here we chat with them about what influences their work.
What informs your taste and style?
Pia : Someone once told me that I dress like a cross between a witch and a skateboarder - which might be leftover from my punk/emo kid teenage phase. I'm pretty utilitarian/minimal in terms of taste and style - I don't like clothes that are fussy, I don't really follow trends, I need pockets, I wear a LOT of black and white.
Radha : Growing up in Delhi, there was a very typical aesthetic and style that you had to conform to and it took me a while to acknowledge that it wasn't really me. Art school also prescribes a certain style onto you and I think it is only after a few years of leaving Srishti that I truly came into my own. After years of being in denial, I definitely prioritise comfort above all, because I won't be able to carry anything if I am not confident about what I am wearing.
Pia is wearing the Zaffre Blue Flared Dress
From comics and album covers to branding, you’ve tackled a wide range of projects. What types of projects are you most passionate about?
Pia : It’s always the comic books. Always. I only work on comics that I’m interested in, that talk about subjects that I care about + have substance to them, and with people I want to work with. If I’m not being commissioned to work on things that I like, I try and create that sort of content myself - much like it happened with Custom Cuts, or the work I produce for The Health Collective.
Radha is wearing the Bhutan Red Kaftan Dress
You've been a JODI customer from way back when we started:) What is it about our brand that you like the most?
Radha : I love everything about JODI - the graphic vibrancy of the prints, the easy but distinct silhouettes and the fact that there is a distinct sense of style that runs through all the clothes and accessories. The other thing I love about JODI is the attention to details - the buttons, the finishing, the little flourishes which complete the pieces.
Radha is wearing Sea Foam wrap dress and Pia is wearing the Dago Ruffle Dress
What did you like about the JODI pieces you wore for the shoot?
Pia : I love the little details and textures, like the knotted sleeves, the piping and the poplin on the white dress. In all honesty Jodi is one of the few places where I really like the use of prints, which are something I don't wear that often.
Radha : I love how Aanchal had styled us. I don't think I would have ever thought to pair up the green dress with a polo neck and that kinda opened a world of possibilities for my winter wardrobe! I LOVED the red and blue checked dress - the fall of it; it had an easy but distinct cut and I loved the pop of red.
Pia is wearing the Dago Ruffle Dress.
Details Sea Foam Wrap Dress
How did you come to be friends?
Pia : I showed up at her house one day and she decided to keep me. No wait - that's not it. I did show up at her house though, and her and I just...ended up hanging out for the next 10 years, through a lot of good and bad times.
One thing you love about each other and one thing that annoys you?
Pia : I love Radha - in her Punjabi entirety , she's actually one of the best people in my life. She's just so completely selfless and chill and will show up when you need her...and I can sense her getting very awkward as she reads this.
Nothing really annoys me barring her trying and then succeeding at making me dance at people's sangeets.
Radha : Our friendship has been an easy, slow journey. I have known Pia since school. She was and continues to be my oasis of calm and de-stresser organiser. I don't think anything about her annoys me but her commitment to her twitter life ( online and offline) always bugs me when she can't give me time :)
The Horizon Is An Imaginary Line, Illustration done by Pia in collaboration with Radha
What projects are you most passionate about? What attracts you to the type of work you choose?
Radha : I am convinced that engaging with good art can be a transformative experience and it has the capacity to change you/jolt you into action in a way that words, news etc never can. It can lead to social change, brighten lives and give voice to those who are often ignored and it is this value that guides me to do the projects I do. I think art (making and experiencing) is for everyone, and cannot/should not be confined to galleries, museums etc and I work mostly towards that -inclusivity in the community and public spaces.
Below are some more pages from their project 'The Horizon Is An Imaginary Line'.