Couturier Gaurav Gupta is still not over the sunsets he experienced during his trip to Radhanagar Beach in Andaman and Nicobar Islands earlier this month. “We would wait for sunset hour every evening. Though different every day, every sunset is perfect in its beauty. It’s magic,” he marvels. This feat of nature—which like the designer, many of us chose to stop-and-admire during the lockdown—also serves as the narrative for Gupta’s spring/summer 2021 couture collection, aptly called A Celestial Sunset.
“We’ve worked with an exciting palette of yellow, twilight pink and dusk blue this season, and they came together very beautifully to mimic a sunset,” explains Gupta. His signature fantastical twist comes in the form of a reference to Greek mythology. The collection’s story is that of The Hesperides, the three daughters of the evening and the golden light of sunsets, emerging out of the sun draped in ethereal sunset hues. “It’s got a very musical mood and undertone, like a song of the goddesses, something we’ve tried to capture in both the construction and the imagery.”
Gupta takes his avant-garde silhouettes into a new season with the sculptural drama expected from him, but he does so with a softer touch. The gowns, pantsuits, lehengas and hybrid saris feature fluid cloud-like ruffles. The amorphous line detailing are the designer’s interpretation of the sun’s rays. “The sculpting technique is more graphic this time, and our customer will be able to pick up on these nuanced updates,” he says. Glass bead, pearl and sequin detailing have been used generously, but their matte tone prevent them from being overbearing, glistening only when they catch the light. The volume on the gowns and skirts has been exaggerated, but the weight has been trimmed down even further with the extensive use of lightweight organza. “Couture should be as light as feather, and breathable. It’s something we’ve paid a lot of attention to.”
The serene outdoor setting and mood of the campaign is a departure from Gupta’s otherwise edgy outtakes. When we make this observation, he reminisces about hares on the road as they drove from one location to another, spotting leopards in the mountains, and watching the moonlight dance on the lake during the shoot. “It continues to be a reflective time for everyone. I’ve just been following my heart, and want my clothes to reflect my internal mood. So this season is the rise of a tranquil GG, if you may,” he laughs. Just like a ray of light breaking through any gloomy clouds that eclipse your day.