MDes Communication Design School of Design

Deepesh Sangtani

I am an interdisciplinary designer from India with an interest in space, place, and print. Playing with the intersection of visual arts and graphic design, I explore visual narratives through diverse forms of tactile design objects. My practice highlights and celebrates often-overlooked aspects of culture and community while evoking nostalgia and raising awareness.

Collaboration forms a significant part of my process – I love experimenting with the possibilities of how different disciplines intertwine.

I also love collecting maps!

Firki – Objects of Transient Belongings
Part 1 – Explore
Part 2 – Celebrate
Part 3 – Distribute
Sonic Artefact – 100 Years of BBC
Streets in Motion
Adventures of a Childhood Past

Firki – Objects of Transient Belongings

Firki* celebrates the colourful, diverse visual language of hand-painted signs in India’s public spaces. The project playfully captures their transient essence through multiple designed objects, highlighting voices and narratives while documenting and archiving them. Firki takes you down memory lane embedded in a cultural heritage often overlooked as everyday ephemera.

‘Objects of transient belongings’ refer to the temporal visual elements of a cityscape that get replaced by more modern techniques and outcomes. Despite that, hand-painted signs belong to the collective memory and identity of spaces and the people navigating them.

The project outcome is divided into explore, celebrate and distribute. Each part showcases specific experiments with objects as an intervention, capturing the celebratory nature of the Indian graphic design style.



*Firki (n) A hand-made paper pinwheel found on the streets of India.


Part 1 – Explore

Part 1 showcases a collection of limited-edition rubber stamps created as a print-making tool for the project. The outcome explores the iconography and representation of Indian graphic elements from public spaces. These stamps are a playful reimagination of the authoritative nature of the Indian bureaucratic system intertwined with the aesthetics of stamps created during the British colonial period (Inspiration: Article by Projit Bihari Mukharji). All these stamps are part of a design system created to have movable/interchangeable parts to depict the transient nature of the signs.

Designing icons based on street elements in India
Stamp design with the slider
Working of the slider designs.
Horizontal slider designs
Square/vertical slider designs
Packaging for the sliders
Rubber stamp prints on paper - 1
Rubber stamp prints on paper - 2
Rubber stamp prints on paper - 3

Part 2 – Celebrate

Part 2 showcases the documented and archived designs celebrated through an art installation where the objects for exploration are pinwheels or Firki. Pinwheel type A represents the documented and digitised designs (Edition of 50). At the same time, pinwheel type B (Edition of 25) highlights the voices of the people (responses gathered via survey that engaged with their perception towards celebrating the visual landscape of India).

Pinwheel Type A

Showcasing the documented and digitised archive of the hand-painted signs Edition of 50 Digital print with rubber stamp

Inside page of the pinwheel type A

Showcases the digitized version of the sign, translation, city it was documented in, language as well as the number of the edition.

Back side of the pinwheel

Mounted on bamboo dowel with thumb pin (including a rubber clutch for safety)

Pinwheel Type B

Showcases the 'Voices of the People' Edition of 25 Digital and rubber stamp print
Highlighting the various responses gathered via survey (Voices of the People)

Back side of the pinwheel type B

Includes the rubber-stamped designs as a part of the main pinwheel
Rubber stamp prints on one-sided colored paper
Rubber stamp prints on one-sided colored paper
Rubber stamp prints on one-sided colored paper

Part 3 – Distribute

The third section of the project outcome shows how the documented and archived signages can be distributed using various designed ephemera.

  1. Accordion Book Design
    7 X 11 cm
    Editions of 3 (with one special edition)
    Various mediums
  2. Collectable Cards – ‘Voices of the People’
    10 x 13.5 cm
    Editions of 5 (with ten collectable cards)
    Screen print and rubber stamp
  3. Map Fold: Documented Signs
    11.5 x 15.5 cm
    Editions of 10 (with two special editions)
    Screen prints (hand-painted screens)

Accordion Book Design | 7 X 11 cm

Screen printed text with custom-made rubber stamp prints
Left: Screen-printed text (responses from the 'Voices of the People') Right: Rubber stamp prints
The book can be viewed from left to right (vice versa) or from top to bottom.

Map Fold - Documented Signs

Screen printed on various paper stock Editions of 10 (with two special editions)
The cover for the folded screen-printed sign includes a quote from the 'Voices of the People' as well as the project description.
Hand painted the signs before screen printing

Collectable Cards - 'Voices of the People' | 10 x 13.5 cm

A pack of 10 collectable cards (varied sizes). Screen printed text and rubber stamp prints
Front side of the card includes a quote from the 'Voices of the People' which is screen-printed, and the back side has the rubber stamp print.
Packaging for the collectable cards. Inspired from the medicine package design found at the chemist shops in India.

Sonic Artefact – 100 Years of BBC

A vinyl dedicated to the voices behind BBC Radio and Broadcasting.

Streets in Motion

Mapping the City – Elective

As a part of the ‘Mapping the City’ elective, Streets in Motion is a series that emphasises the constant activity and energy found in Indian streets while reflecting the dynamic nature of the scenes. The emphasis on the temporality and informality of Indian street activities in this title encapsulates the tone of the entire series. From children playing cricket on the streets to roadside barbers, such fleeting moments and the distinctive rhythm of daily life strongly emphasise the cultural context, showcasing the vibrant and varied street activities unique to India.

Adventures of a Childhood Past

A series of 6 A4 Kinegram posters that reflect my favourite moments and memories with my childhood friends.