Deepti Nair and Harikrishnan Panicker, aka Hari & Deepti, are a husband-wife artist duo, known for their paper cut shadow boxes. Based in Mumbai and previously based out of Denver, their collaboration with paper and light started as an experiment in 2010, but would soon turn them into an international sensation.
“With 65k followers on Instagram and solo exhibitions around the world, their specific papercut and backlit style has made quite a splash. “We would say that we are storytellers and we are using this medium to transport the viewer into our world,” they explained, poetically, in an interview with ACTFAQs. “We have worked and developed this style which is very unique,” they note. “We are still pushing ourselves within this art form to tell these stories in a better way.”
According to the duo, stories have so many shades and depth in them, and paper as a medium has the exact qualities to reflect and interpret them. “We start with a story,” they explain the creative process that takes place behind the scenes.”Our art is a collaborative process, so it might be something we come across during our travel or something we imagine. We then sketch it out and hand-cut these intricate layers. The next phase is putting the layers together, depending on how it interacts with light, making some last-minute tweaks. This is the most crucial part of our work.”
The whole process takes between 8 to 10 days depending on the size and the intricacy of what they are creating. “The idea of using paper as a sculpting medium and forming 3D dioramas is something that is really new,” Hari & Deepti note, “but there is a fresh wave of artists trying out paper art. We hope to have more artists exploring this medium.”
Follow their Instagram page for more.