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Information Arts and Information Design Practices

"I hope you will go out and let stories, that is life, happen to you, and that you will work with these stories... water them with your blood and tears and your laughter till they bloom, till you yourself burst into bloom.”
- Clarissa Pinkola Estes


Neha Bharadwaj’s book about a little girl with Visual Impairment who finds a mysterious box! – Chingoo’s Ching Chink



Today art and design leadership is critical around the world to create action around issues that are social, cultural, political and environmental. From poverty, inequality, gender issues to climate change, artists and designers hold a powerful tool, their ability to tell stories through varied media to change the course of life around them, to create meaningful action, to enable change, to empower people, to be the voice for those who have none.

Stories are the most powerful ways in which cultures dream, grow, transform, make meaning and sense. Storytelling has the power to transform information into meaningful experiences. Information is all-pervasive and exists everywhere! We use phones to capture and record our lives, tell stories; posters to inform, educate and make aware; illustrated books of every kind to make a narrative come alive; we use our bodies as powerful instruments to tell stories through performance, dance, theatre; we watch films that transport us to fictional or real worlds or bring to light situations and events that are transforming ourselves and the world!
All of this is information… Overwhelming, comprehensive, persuasive and constantly evolving with time, technology, environment and us… people.

The Information Arts and Information Design Practices (IAIDP) looks at information in all its varied forms. It looks at the processes by which information is gathered and gleaned, it pays great attention to understanding who this information is intended for; utmost emphasis is laid on developing, through a design or artistic process, the appropriate media for the dissemination and delivery of this information.
At IAIDP we nurture reflective practitioners who enquire into; and interpret the world through storytelling. Using tools that record change; be it memories, cultures, personal narratives or vast amounts of data, students are encouraged to explore newer and imaginative ways to construct and craft knowledge, tell stories and responsibly create communication.

While the design of communication is what we do at IAIDP, what remains at the crux of our work is social design. Students work in diverse fields that range from conservation, gender, social communication, culture and heritage. Our core aim is to design/create for social concerns or aspire to create work that creates social change in some way. Students through the course of their study explore diverse media ranging from drawing, painting, photography, film, creative writing, graphic design, multimodal design, storytelling, computer graphics, interaction design and other art and design practices. Research, design process and methods, artistic process and methods and ethical ways of working closely with communities while collaborating with them are given special importance.

Today, social design is integral to both public and private sectors. Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives as well as NGO's are opening up intriguing project spaces that span contexts across the world. This course invites young people who are seeking to make a difference in the world with their work.


Pooja Ullalkar’s board game for little ones with visual impairment ‘Tale-Up’, packs in action, sound and role play, complete with Braille text and textures, as well as bright colorful visuals, the game is inclusive and allows for integrated play.


Children from a tribal school in Bandipur, color frogs as part of an activity conducted by Spenta Wadia.


The Gathering Echoes project that looked at gender, technology and empowerment; had Srishti students working closely with young Dalit girls from around Mysore.


Students record and document their research from the field in creative ways.


A studio day has students exploring diverse media and methods. Here a student visually represents all the sounds she heard that morning.


Key Values

Experimental Artistry Ethical Creativity Compassionate Sustainability Rooted Sensitivity Enduring Empathy


Diya Pinto’s mini project that attempts to make an illustrated album of photographs of imagined and actual events from her life.


Course Structure

The curriculum comprises of different ways of learning as follows:

  1. Foundation introduces students to basic principles and tools of Art, Design and Technology as methods, tools and processes
  2. Disciplinary Studios are learning spaces where students develop core disciplinary capabilities, while navigating a trans-disciplinary environment
  3. General Studies: A common and compulsory programme of study that integrates Humanities, Sciences, Development and Policy Studies and also offers Languages-English, Indian- Hindi and Kannada as well as Foreign (Spanish, French and German) Click here to read more about the General Studies Program >>
  4. Interim: An introduction to practice in new and emerging areas of art and design
  5. Electives: Of three kinds- this program allows students to expand their skills, develop the interests as well as provide opportunities for travel exchange
  6. Internship/Apprenticeship: Compulsory work experience done over the summer-break between the 6th and 7th semester
  7. Project involves the application, synthesis and demonstration of capabilities acquired, and is a qualifier to the thesis
  8. Thesis is culmination of the 4-year program, which allows for demonstration of an integration of values, positions, capabilities and practice.


Aaniya Asrani’s final project is a series of books titled ‘Stories of Exile’. Each book is beautifully illustrated with layers of gateway and explores the notion of what ‘home’ means to a displaced community.


Learning Approach

  • We thrive in lively debates, dialogue, sensitive and ethical questioning on a range of issues
  • We research into communities and contexts using participatory approaches
  • We build multiple modes of expression for engagement in the field of literature, science, media, ecology and learning experiences.
  • We employ data analysis, visualisation tools as well as artistic expression to create communication
  • We create new technologies of representation by interpreting and visualizing data
  • We explore hands on ways of crafting, design and development for traditional and digital platforms


Students trekking in Bandipur to understand the relationship of flora and fauna with local community in order to write stories for children that are local; based on issues of conservation.


Capability Sets

This course will enable students in their:

  • Ability to experiment, choose appropriate media and apply
  • Ability to use multiple lenses to extract, interpret and engage with information
  • Ability to interact and work with communities and limitations
  • Ability to research using diverse art and design research methodologies
  • Ability to challenge self, contemplate and reflect


The above mentioned capability sets could lead to opportunities such as:

  • Employment in Design Studios, Advertising Agencies and the Publishing Industry
  • Employment in New Media and Software industry
  • Employment in Media and Television Industry
  • Employment in startups, small and medium enterprises, NGOs, social and educational enterprises.
  • You can become a contemporary art practitioner, entrepreneur, design consultant
  • You can have an active involvement in emerging domains such as digital arts and new technology, storytelling in new formats.


For more information about this program, kindly email Srisrividhiya Kalyanasundaram at
or Murali Krishna S Menon at

Children from the Mathru School For The Blind jump around and play with Pooja Ullakar’s story mat. The mat uses cost effective materials, textures, bright colors and simple sound making devices; that all together add to the noisy fun that children can have!


Disciplinary Intersections

The course is informed by learning modules of the following disciplines:


Research and Collaboration