Ishan Khosla’s jacket for ‘Kintsugi’ wins Oxford Bookstore book cover award

New Delhi- “Kintsugi” is the ancient Japanese art of repairing broken objects with gold, and designer Ishan Khosla delicately wove this concept into the jacket of a similarly titled novel by Anukrti Upadhyay to win the seventh edition of the Oxford Bookstore Book Cover Prize which was announced Thursday evening, a member of the jury declaring it “amazing”.

“Designing a cover is not an easy task. On the one hand, the cover should be bold and interesting enough to grab the attention of the passerby or scroller. On the other hand, it has to convey the essence of the book literally or metaphorically,” said Khosla, who holds an MFA from New York’s School of Visual Arts and runs a hugely successful design studio in the nation’s capital, to IANS after the award was announced.

“For Kintsugi, it was as much a joy to design the cover as to read the book. I worked on various concepts as one always does trying to bring out the various qualities of the book, the fragmentary nature, the evocative and haunting quality of the writing and the fragility of the human experience,” he said. he adds.

“Kintsugi is an amazing book cover,” said Kunal Basu, one of five members of the jury, headed by parliamentarian and author Shashi Tharoor.

“Finely illustrated, it conveys the creator’s superior craftsmanship and draws the eye to the heart of the book. The design served each of the three purposes of a successful cover: ability to attract attention; involve the theme of the book and achieve a high aesthetic level. It has turned the book into a treasured artifact that is a pleasure to cherish and preserve,” Basu added.

“Kintsugi”, published by Fourth Estate, is a novel about young women pushing boundaries, overcoming trauma and challenging social order. And men surprised by unconventional, fearless and independent women. This is the story of Meena, rebellious and rebellious, and Yuri, as complex as Meena is naive.

There’s Hajime, an outsider to two cultures, and Prakash, unable to see beyond his limited horizons. It is also the story of Haruko who has dedicated herself to her art, and Leela who is determined to break gender roles and learn the traditional gold craftsmanship of her community.

Set between Japan and Jaipur, “Kintsugi” follows the lives of these characters as they intersect and diverge, collide and crash and come together in unexpected ways. The result is a brilliantly original novel, as deep as it is playful, as moving as it is captivating.

Representing this complexity is no easy task and Khosla executed with elan.

In addition to the winning book cover, three other designers received Special Jury Prizes in recognition of their outstanding mastery of graphics and visual storytelling. These designers are Maithili Doshi for “Turmeric Nation” published by Speaking Tiger; Shashi Bhushan Prasad for “The Maharaja of Jodhpur’s Guns” published by Niyogi Books and Gavin Morris for “Estuary” published by Eka.

“In these times of uncertainty and anxiety caused by the pandemic and war, it has been very exciting, indeed, to encounter so much style and substance in the excellent entries, to see the collaboration between graphics, illustrations, images and text,” Priti Paul said director Apeejay Surrendra Group and one of the jurors.

“The design and aesthetics of the books evolve every year, celebrating originality, creativity and reflecting reality. On the occasion of Oxford Bookstore’s Century in Books – and to reiterate our celebration of the best in publishing – we are proud to announce an important new initiative – the First Oxford Bookstore Art Book Prize,” she said. added.

With a prize money of Rs 1 lakh, this prize will holistically assess the variety of genres flourishing under the umbrella of art publications. It aims to identify the narrative and material experiments, the critical approach to the subject and the innovative formats carried out by the artists to explicitly account for their practice.

The new award would go beyond its conventional definition and include accordion books, graphic novels, pop-up arts, photo books and zines. Significantly, this would recognize the role books play in the process of spreading knowledge of art and culture while recognizing the balance between print output, graphic illustration and overall design appeal. . (IANS)