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This is our first collaboration with an artist/designer, in line with our commitment to issues of body positivity and mental health.


This collection has been made from blue pottery, by a single artist- Lyla Freechild. The process of blue pottery is a very rigorous one, involving a lot of steps and patient loving. So, we dedicated the collection to her great grandmother, who she has never seen but also been inspired by, listening just to stories of her. Khillo Bai, was a survivor of the partition, a strong woman who had lost a lot and yet managed to maintain her lightness and joy. Anyone who talks of her has a smile on their face, thinking of her clownish ways with kids and compassion with each one.


Each of these pieces is one of a kind, coming from her larger body of work on gender, body and sexuality- I am nature.The pieces in these collection, despite delving into the deepest pains and fears accompanying the creative life of a woman in our context, have that same lightness and joy. Her work explores issues of body image and menstruation in great detail. It might be interesting to note that the terms hysteric and hysteria come from Origin



mid 17th century (aslk an adjective): via Latin from Greek husterikos ‘of the womb’, from hustera ‘womb’ (hysteria being thought to be specific to women and associated with the womb).


We are mostly unaware how gender biases are deeply rooted in our very language and thought process. Women are stereotyped as dramatic, as excessive, as those who feel or say or do too much, as hysteric. Historically,such a representation has led to creating grounds for thinking of women as dangerous or stupid creatures in need of protection and control. A lot of these images of women were formulated as a means to control their sexuality, as means to exert power and keep a check on the patriarchal lineage. The kind of work that artists like Lyla do are a direct intervention in the imbalanced social narratives that we have been existing with, which are also at the heart of a lot of violence and inequality in the society.



Our model for this collection, Erum, is a poet, healer and social worker. Constantly striving to find her own identity and true voice, there is something madly playful about her. Erum has a strong identification with nature, trying constantly to work towards recycling, reusing, being connected to all that is nature. A lot of her work in on healing and emotions catharsis, especially related to women. Like Lyla Freechild, the maker of this collection who has renamed herself 3 years back, Erum too renamed had herself Atmiye a year back. Unknown of each others’ existence, these two women have been doing all that makes them unique, stepping beyond the boundaries of caste, creed and religion.

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This collection derives inspiration from Kaali, referring to the black and bold Goddess, the one who can slay but is also known as the mother, the protector.


Silver, when it comes in contact with air, inevitably turns black. The shimmer of raw silver is rather short lived unless it is protected through various means. Each of these pieces is bold, making a statement of your acceptance of who you are, in all your dark divine beauty. Most of the pieces are handmade, either in completeness or partially, deriving inspiration from the jewellery of the tribal women, who have been known for their strength and capacity to survive.


This collection is a celebration of the tarnishing or the blackening that comes naturally to the metal. It is at the same time, a way of delve into the darkness and the destructiveness that is very much part of any creative process, or anyone’s life, so to say. The feminine is the source of all creativity – the feminine as a part of that duality found in each one of us, irrespective of our biological gender. All that multiplies, all that reproduces itself, all that proliferates and nurtures is a feminine force, what is called the aspect of ‘prakrati’ in Vedic mythology. Like all forces and energies, it changes its form and shapes, and can oscillate from the very fierce to the very soft possibilities of being.


For the shoot of this collection, we worked with Neha, who is also a part of the team. We wanted to explore the excessiveness of her life, her obsession with books and colours and the dreamy darkness one can often see in her fierce , almost prohibiting attitude. At the same time, she has the possibility to nurture and accept all that nature has to bring to one, including the tarnishing and rough edges.

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About the photoshoot:
To explore the coolness of ‘chaandi’, we decided to do a photostory by the river. It is unfortunate that over the last couple of decades the river that flows in our city is known for all the wrong reasons; for how it is dying and full of filth. And slowly, the river is drifting away from the living memory of the locals, or at least a certain generation. We wanted to go back to the river, to make it part of our conversations once again, not for just being on the brink of death, but for something more- for the peace one can find being near it even today, or for the beauty that can still be seen in it, if you want to.
However, it does take a shift in perspective to see something differently. And we were fortunate to be in company of travellers for this shoot. One of the most important things about traveling is the newness of perspective, the openness to beauty and faith in the universe that one needs to have as one sets one’s foot out of home. We found just the right people for it. Danielli and Douglus were into their 9th month of bicyling around the world when they came to Agra. What was supposed to be a 2 day thing turned into a beautiful stay of about 20 days, where we shared and exchanged so much of our lives, culture and perspectives with each other. We convinced them that there was more to Agra than the Taj Mahal and petha. As they stayed, we cooked, we sang, we danced, we laughed and cried together. Through their trip we collaborated on a couple of projects, and one of them turned out to be this shoot.
We went to Kailash temple (one of the four famous Shiva temples in the Agra), by the river Yamuna. Danielli wanted to dress in Indian attire and we decided that to make her our model. She loved some of the pieces of this collection and it suddenly felt all of it fitted perfectly well.
Here we had in front of us this strong and beautiful women, traveling around the world with her partner whose dream it was to cycle around the world. And there was the river, the moon, the cool and the new eyes of travellers, uncorrupted by preconceived notions and habit. We could see the river differently. And create images in a manner more fulfilling. And in all this process, Douglus collaborated with us behind the camera.
(The photostory has been conceptualised and executed by Tahir Ahmed at the Studio Blue Cat, which is the creative & media collaborator of ISOVI)