Gaurav Gupta, the Indian designer of choice for American rappers?

Megan Thee Stallion attends the 94th Academy Awards in a Gaurav Gupta gown

Megan Thee Stallion attends the 94th Academy Awards in a Gaurav Gupta gown | Photo Credit: Getty Images

There’s a certain rhythmic pattern that defines the design vocabulary of Indian couturier Gaurav Gupta, whose creations have recently been spotted on American rappers Megan Thee Stallion and Cardi B. On Monday morning in India, Gupta’s blue-and-silver ruffled gown made a shared debut with Megan on the red carpet of the 94th Academy Awards.

Gaurav Gupta 

Gaurav Gupta  | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

Online, the dramatic nude pink gown worn by Cardi B in her upcoming music video, No Love, fuses art with fashion to create a “sculpted garment” that represents the element of air (the MV is inspired by the various elements of nature). In both creations, Gupta toys with his signature technique to create an extraordinary mould that embraces the body and adds a theatrical twist with free-flowing trails of fabric.

10-day masterpiece

The Hollywood-bound journey has been particularly exciting for Gupta, who’s had to work on tight deadlines and crisp specifications. It took him about five days to create Megan’s red carpet attire. 

“We were literally approached with this gown just 10 days ago [before the Oscars],” he says. “Megan’s stylist, Eric Archibald, got in touch with our PR representative in LA, Hemakshi Bose. The ask — for our sculpting statement and art couture — suggested that Megan wanted to celebrate art in fashion. We call the gown a biomorphic fantasy. It’s in soft blue and silver, which is my idea of fantasy creatures found while extreme deep-sea diving; that’s the inspiration.”

Aware of Megan’s disposition, Gupta knew she loves making a statement. So does Eric. After running a few sketches back and forth, the garment was taken to Los Angeles. “It was a magical moment to have my brand on the Oscar’s red carpet for the first time with Megan, who was making a debut there, too. I love the joining of two forces to create concept couture and neo-cultural movements in the world. Also, it’s really nice that Indian couture is being represented in such a beautiful, global way,” he says.

A sketch of Cardi B’s gown, and the rapper in her video

A sketch of Cardi B’s gown, and the rapper in her video

Fabric art

For Cardi B, too, the request came in through Bose. “Kollin Carter, Cardi’s main stylist, saw one of our sculpture dresses in the showroom. It was a plain, organza dress from a few seasons ago. He fell in love with the technique and form, and wanted something new and groundbreaking for the music video,” he shares. Elaborating on how the nude pink gown made the rapper shine, he adds, “It’s a pure art sculpture. We constructed dummies of Cardi’s body shape and size, and made these two sculptural garments.”

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Printable version | Apr 7, 2022 3:58:04 pm |