Kamini Rao, Founder and Creative Director, Studio Slip
SLIP is a fun young team of designers and architects who love to experiment and try new things.
Spatial Designing is a new conceptual designing discipline whose range ranges from architecture to art and blurs traditional academic divisions like interior architecture, public art etc. It is primarily concerned with the intelligent usage of space with an emphasis on the behavioral(how it would feel) aspect alongside catering to the formal imperatives of organization and aesthetics.
For Kamini the term is to be seen as a broad encompassing term instead of just a constricting definition associated with interior designing, and she also points out how in her work experience she has encountered occasions where nomenclature had to take a back seat for practical purposes.
About Kamini Rao
Kamini Rao is the founder and creative director of Studio Slip and launched the studio in 2017 to bring an experimental approach to interior design. In addition to leading the studio’s team of talent, Kamini runs a BnB which she uses as a playground for her experiments.
How did Studio Slip start?
Like most success(struggle) stories Studio Slip started off as a result of an entrepreneurial dream of an enthusiastic young woman who eventually had to let go of the comforts of a stable well-to-do job in order to pursue her dreams. Studio Slip began as a startup with Kamini as its founder and creative director and has grown both in portfolio and balance sheet by taking in other like-minded enthusiastic designers, architects (& other staff) and accepting diverse work contracts from real estate projects to ad-shoots.
The conversation then moves to the numerous projects that Studio Slip has been a part of and the intricacies involved in them. A Tanzania based Vaccination plant design has a special tint of nostalgia as apart from the impressive altruistic off shooting results of their work (especially at a time of a global pandemic) the social demographics (like the presence of a large Gujarati diaspora which often makes it feel like home) and social events have also had a significant impact on her life.
Among other works commercial residential projects have been a staple but Studio Slip has also taken up innovative design demands like educational spaces which have seen radical changes owing to the covid situation but they have been able to manage it by constantly being on their toes and an unwavering belief in their skillset.
What the Future Holds
The host then brings up the demand differences between the present Millennials and the older folks in terms of their expectations from spaces and properties. Kamini (who herself belongs to the Gen Z) points out a few key differences like the neo minimalist approach of the younger generation who see investments in properties not only as a place of residence but also as an accommodative alternate place of work(WFH needs). Also a stark change has occurred where the fascination of blind emulation of western designs seems to have faded a bit and a resurgence of localized designs has occurred which has prompted their firm to scout for local manufacturers and handicrafts (for both aesthetics and appeal). However, she also points out that the trend of minimalism may change soon, and the tendency of hoarding may also be seen as people age, giving rise to alternate designs.
SLIP is a fun young team of designers and architects who love to experiment and try new things. We’ve built giant cakes, designed cosy mountain homes, created fake aeroplanes and architected a house for a doll that was featured in Architectural Digest. We are currently working on the home of William Bissell, the owner of Fabindia, and recently completed a mountain home of his in Landour, Mussoorie. In Bangalore, we are working on three residences, one on Richmond Road, Jayanagar, and Devanahalli. Two are scheduled for completion this month.
We are also working on a couple of commercial clients, one of which is Hester Biosciences, a vaccination plant in Tanzania which I was very lucky to have visited in December. It’s being partially funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Tanzanian Government. In the past, we have worked with Cipla Pharmaceuticals and the Azim Premji Foundation on a digital media lab.
I have a strong background in residential interiors which I studied at Chelsea College of Art, UAL, London. After graduating, I gained experience with Kabir Hira Architects and PureSpaces which is also reflected in the portfolio I have linked to. You can also see my personal portfolio here and our studio website here.