by Jincy IypeMay 25, 2023
Since 2003, Indian paint company Asian Paints, through their initiative ColourNext has been collaborating with experts from various creative disciplines of architecture, art, design, fashion, sociology, and media, to put together their trend report. The forecast of trends includes colours, materials, textures, and finishes that might mark their presence in the subcontinent. Earlier this year, at the Mumbai Urban Arts Festival in India, Asian Paints announced Silver Escapade as the Colour of the Year 2023. Following this, at the India Design 2023, the company and ColourNext revealed more design directions for the year, inspired by cultural and social influences on colour and decor trends. Addressing socio-cultural topics of how we express ourselves, a newfound urgency for wellness, and the deeper connections we form with others and the world, the four forecast design directions for 2023 are Gothilicious, Edge of the Forest, Sleep Sense, and Shroom.
Gothilicious aims to extend emotions of self-expression and being unapologetically bold and sensual. Presented through colour tones of charcoal warm matt black, deepest dark skies, blackest black pigment, deep dark forest olive greens, dark reds, sheen and shimmer of mother of pearl and molten metal, the design direction aims at reviving the once celebrated gothic aesthetic to the current world. It can be viewed as challenging traditional ideas of dark and nebulous, exploring the intensity of pensive and powerful human emotions.
Edge of the Forest hopes to be a life-affirming and restorative forecast story. "When the pandemic hit we were clouded with loneliness, people found themselves turning to nature for answers, as per big data reports. This is because people know from instinct that nature allows them to connect to a world larger than themselves," states the official release. The trend also roots from this realisation and is inspired by unfiltered forests, woods, and its many enchanting creatures. Edge of the Forest intends to signify human reconnection to nature and the joy and vitality that comes with it—a new kind of 'inland living' at the edge of the forest.
Sleep Sense comes from a new frontier in wellness—a sleep revolution. Drawing on the need for quality sleep and rest for the mind, the design direction aims at creating an environment that imparts a feeling of stillness and lightness. The colour palette for this trend is a collection of broken whites—comforting, nourishing, soft adaptive, familiar, and tranquil. “There is a renewed focus on breathable, handcrafted fabrics and locally sourced natural materials,” mentions the ColourNext release.
Bringing forth a story of revival and rebirth, Shroom has a palette of intriguing colour tones formed from a combination of luminous and saturated hues. The design direction is derived from an intent to take all that is dead and turn it back to life. Talking about this concept, ColourNext adds, "It is in many ways mirroring the year itself, as people come out of the biggest health scare this generation has witnessed. It seems simple from the outside but has complex layers of ecological memory.”
Along with the four design directions, Asian Paints also launched Wallpaper of the Year—AION (pronounced Ahee-ohn); a natural and earth-safe paint—Nilaya Naturals; and an imaginative palette of wall finishes called Material Finishes by Royale Play. "As we celebrate 20 years of ColourNext with pride and zest, we look forward to sharing with the world the colour and material forecast for the year. The design directions for the year—Gothilicious, Edge of the Forest, Sleep Sense and Shroom highlight self-expression, wellness, fantasy and connecting with the world, addressing socio-cultural and consumer shifts which have emerged from getting out of a rather difficult and tough phase of the last two years. The Wallpaper of the Year—Aion speaks about time and eternity through art and design and Nilaya Naturals along with Material Finishes by Royale Play align perfectly with our forecasted themes for the year. We are excited to see the multitude of interpretations of our directions across landscape and medium. It is definitely going to be an interesting year where we see the application of our forecast and our colour and material intelligence behind them come to life,” shared Amit Syngle, managing director and CEO of Asian Paints Ltd.