A dabbawalla in a taxi!
August 24, 2015 9:16 PM   Subscribe

Taxi Fabric - connecting designers with taxi drivers – turning seat covers into canvas’ for young Indian designers to show off their design talent and storytelling skills. [via Art Radar]
posted by unliteral (11 comments total) 18 users marked this as a favorite
How incredibly cool is this? There's this one cab driver in Toronto who has his cab fully decked out, as in every available surface, in shiny things, LED lights, tassels, artwork from I am embarrassed to say I don't know where but based on the Bollywood movies he has playing on the screens in the back of the seats (instead of the loathsome 'taxi network' BS of shitty trivia games and ads ads ads ads ads ads) I'm guessing India. It is SO AWESOME stumbling out of a bar and finding his cab (only three times in like five years) and being so happy that you're not getting another dreary dark ride with some dude talking on his phone and the shittiest of club music coming out of the radio. (And yeah you can request that those things stop or change, and really, being a cab driver's kind of a shit life so go ahead and talk on your phone). Instead you're getting this Magical Shiny Fantasy Ride and you feel like you're in a movie.

I'd really love to see this project come to Toronto. It could be a really lovely investment in arts in the city.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 9:31 PM on August 24, 2015 [6 favorites]

Once in Philly, on the way back from a concert, my friends and I called an Uber and happened to get the most interesting cab. The driver had rigged up the whole thing with LED strips, and had a remote in the back to control the color and pattern. He also had a Bluetooth setup so people could play their own music on his speakers. Basically his whole shtick was a roaming party cab kind of thing - he gave us his card, in case we ever wanted to call him for transport to a night out. Apparently he had a dedicated clientele, including a bunch of celebrities, who would book him for hours at a time for club crawls. The card had a link to his Instagram page, which had a ton of photos of people partying in the cab. It was a pretty long ride out to the burbs so we all got to talking, and he told us that he had majored in business in college, and while the party cab was a pretty good gig his goal had always to start his own rum distillery, and he was in talks with one of his celebrity regular customers (he wouldn't say who) to do a branding/investment thing a la Diddy and Ciroc.

It was to this day one of the most interesting taxi rides I've ever had.
posted by Itaxpica at 10:33 PM on August 24, 2015 [3 favorites]

This is one of the coolest projects I've seen in years.

Minimal money involved, lots of great projects and work for designers, some seriously awesome taxicabs created for the drivers and the public to love.

At first I thought it was kinda just showy. But then I realized no that's wrong... One aspect of this is personalizing the cabs for their drivers, hopefully making it more of a special object of pride and transforming the relationship between driver and vehicle.

And the concepts and stories now embodied in the cabs are pretty great.

I wonder who owns the cabs? I hope it's the drivers.
posted by gribbly at 10:44 PM on August 24, 2015

Very cool but how do dabba wallahs fit in to this?
posted by Hash at 12:06 AM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]

Not to speak for uniliteral, but I'm thinking the title might be referring to this design (see the front seat passenger-side image) showing busy people in Mumbai.
posted by taz at 1:15 AM on August 25, 2015

Heh, that's a new one. But yeah, no, that's not what I was referencing. It was this one from Sanket Avlani (the originator of the project).
posted by unliteral at 2:13 AM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]

oops! how wrong can I be in just one sentence???? But great post, unliteral; I love these unilaterally!
posted by taz at 2:46 AM on August 25, 2015

Ten bucks sez this shows up in the next Gibson book.
posted by valkane at 4:15 AM on August 25, 2015 [2 favorites]

I love this so much. This should be everywhere.
posted by Kabanos at 6:45 AM on August 25, 2015 [1 favorite]

I love this. Time to start lobbying the NYC TLC?
posted by moonmilk at 6:45 AM on August 25, 2015 [3 favorites]

"Ten bucks sez this shows up in the next Gibson book."

I can imagine this being the Ahmed self-driving limousine from Count Zero:


It's a Mercedes-Benz got rugs and pillows and an AI.
posted by I-baLL at 9:29 AM on August 25, 2015

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