26 January, 2021

The Inside Story

A lavish coffee table brings alive India's colourful whimsy

The Inside Story
When Sunil Sethi was first approached to collaborate on and write the text for a book on Indian interiors, he was, he admits, a trifle disdainful and declined politely. But Taschen, the book's German publishers, cannily sent him copies of Paris Interiors and Moroccan Interiorsópart of the same seriesóas appetisers. Sethi was riveted. These weren't just compendia of pretty pictures and inanimate objects. Rather they were lavish, elegantly produced, skilfully edited books which took in an impressive sweep of history, personal styles and cultural influences. They also fed, and sated a keen human curiosity; the voyeuristic instinct that urges even casual passersby to look in through a lit window at a stranger's home, craning to glimpse another's life. Sethi was seduced into participation.

Carefully conceived, not just along a geographical grid, but also on a socio-economic and cultural one, Indian Interiors, photographed by Deidi von Schaewen and edited by Angelika Taschen, has taken three years, much trans-Atlantic to and froing and some fevered hair-tearing to...



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