W+K DESIGN LONDON
Tobias’ taxi is inspired by the discovery and exploration of the city and how a sense of curiosity leads you to find new and interesting places within it. Muksed, the driver of his taxi, explained that what he likes most about his job is seeing new places, with his favourite places to visit in Mumbai being Bandra-Worli Sea Link and Marine Drive. Tobias has never been to Mumbai but he wanted to somehow experience what a journey between these two places might look like by using imagery and maps found online. The outcome is an abstracted journey between them, starting in the back of the taxi and winding itself through the various panels to the front. Through its rich and changing textures I hope the taxi fabric inspires a sense of curiosity and wonder about the city, encouraging passengers to seek out places they might not have visited before.
Tobias explains the reasons behind the title of the design as “I chose the feeling of curiosity as I want passengers to feel a sense of wonder about the city, encouraging them to explore and seek out new places they might not have been before."
Tobias studied Graphic Design Communication at Chelsea College of Arts. He then worked for 6 months in Sweden for Lundgren+Lindqvist. From there he spent a year freelancing before joining Wieden+Kennedy, where he’s been ever since. He says the biggest challenge he faced starting off was to have the confidence to do the work that he wanted to do, and figuring out his working process.
When he was approached for the project, he wanted to do something immersive, something the passenger can interact with while they're being driven around the city. He says “as a passenger being fully surrounded by the design, you have the opportunity to design an environment that can make them feel or see something new.”
Tobias says the biggest challenge was to design for a 3D format, figuring out how the various panels can work together and enhance the experience to turn it into an immersive environment.
In terms of influence from Mumbai, he explains that “as the design is my interpretation and ‘experience’ of Mumbai, images, maps and wikipedia articles found online became the main influence. From this research I was able to abstract the information in different ways to reflect the contrasting areas within the city. Some of the more visual influences were the colours of the city, the key landmarks along the route, and the striped black and white curbs that informed the design of the path running through the taxi.”
The design is based on a conversation between Tobias and the driver, one of the key takeouts was that what he loved most about his job is to see new places. The driver also mentioned his two favourite places in the city to drive around in, Bandra-Worli Sea Link and Marine Drive, which became introduction to the city to Tobias, and the basis of the design.
Tobias thinks the Taxi Fabric project is a really nice way to feature up-and-coming designers, especially due to its immersive format. It invites passengers to interact with the designs in a way that they might not do so otherwise. He would advice follow designers as “Archive mistakes and leftovers, they’re sometimes the most interesting bits.”
Photographs by Rahul Vangani & Amey Kadam