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News |  25 Feb 2021 15:04 |  By Namrata Kale

Santanu Hazarika: It’s amazing working with talents like Ritviz, Raftaar as we have similar tastes in art and music

Santanu Hazarika is a visual artist based in New Delhi/Mumbai. He gave up engineering to become the first-ever Red Bull World Doodle Art Champion in 2014. In a short span of a few years, Santanu has a enviable roster of clients such as Red Bull International, Adidas, Reebok, Harper’s, NDTV, Ministry of Culture, Gully Gang, Azadi Records, Ritviz and hip-hop artists like Raftaar, divine among many others.

He creates intricately detailed illustrations inspired by Japanese Anime and loves to explore themes relating to mythology, philosophy and pop-culture in his works. In addition, ‘live doodling’ and designing customised sneakers are some of his creative outlets. Working in a niche framework, Santanu is the perfect example of a self-taught, independent artist.

In a recent chat with,  Santanu has given a brief about his journey in the music industry and much more. Check out below.

Could you elaborate on your journey in the music industry? How was the whole experience while working with popular indie and hip hop artists? 

I have always been fascinated by music and musicians but unfortunately Im almost dyslexic when it comes to making it. So the closest I have been in contributing to the music scene was making the album artworks and the respective merchandise. I started my career by making art for local bands in my town. Its amazing working with talents like Ritviz, Raftaar as we have similar tastes in art, music and very open to creative thinking. Its the fact that they trust me with my style of work and the ability to translate their masterpieces into a visual form is somewhat like a dream come true. Also it has always been an effortless process for me as i can easily tap into their vision and artistry because we connect on a personal level. 

Tell us a bit about your recent music projects? Your Collab with Su Real and Ritviz.

This will be the first time I will be collaborating with Su real and not only that it’s a collab between Su , Dutty deedz and the rap troupe - 7 bantaiz. We working on a complete art pack including the single artwork and super limited T-shirts.

So Ritviz and I go long back from his first album Ved to his latest album Dev and everything in between , we worked together to shape the visual identity of him and his music. So Ritviz is known for his iconic kurta + sneakers combo. It was only natural that we come up with a line inspired by his look. So the kurta is inspired from his first album art , where his comic version can be seen shooting down from space wearing a red kurta. So this kurta is the same one ,combined with his flower logo ,thick yellow seam stitching which has a loose fit. It is extremely limited and dropping in a few days. But this is just one drop there is a whole line dropping soon .so stay tuned .

And why kurta , why not ?! It’s part of our culture it’s organic to us , why not make it a pop thing ?!

Your upcoming projects

After this I’m focusing just on a special series of ink illustrations which will be entirely in analog. Which I’m going to reveal in my first ever solo exhibition with Method, Mumbai. And also a surprise passion project which I can’t disclose now.

How did you keep yourself engaged in Lockdown?

 Through out the lockdown I played a lot of video games and started making music on my iPad using garage band. And yes of course painted a lot ! A lot !!!