Graphicshelf interviews BEDx author Rushil Bhatnagar, as he talks about how BEDx was born, his inspirations and about zines.
What got you into zines and illustrations? Where did it all begin for you?
I was in London for a semester exchange, pursuing advertising, discovering the power of print media and other mediums to put across your voice. When I came across zines at an exhibition, It was fascinating to see independent voices having the freedom as to what they always wanted to say. It doesn’t follow any rule but only one, to reach out loud.
The inspiration for BEDx Talk?
BEDx Talks originated from a facebook joke I had once put out which went like : Just in – UNESCO has officially declared cuddling as BEDX Talks. Which was a parody of TEDx Talks. In my final year of college, I had the opportunity to collaborate with one of the best artists I have had the privilege to work with, Priyanka Paul. And after further discussing the potential in this, we came up with a sex ed guide for millenial men in India.
How do you anticipate the response for BEDx Talk?
We never expected this to be quite honest. The response has been overwhelming and we are taking it one day at a time. People are reading the zine, sharing a laugh of two and also gaining some perspective on sex. This is what we always wanted from this zine and it’s finally happening.
Is this a field (zines and graphic content) that you see really picking up the pace in India?
Definitely! Underground artists and a lot of local artists as well get to put out their work in an unconventional manner as compared to a mere social media post, poster and so on. Platforms such as Filter, Gaysi, Bombay Underground and other zine festivals are now at a boom supporting the artists. So when the work gets around, it definitely gets picked up.
What’s your art ritual or art process? Weirdly comfy socks? Moody music? People watching at Starbucks?
I wish I had an art ritual like everyone out there but as of now I think the process includes eating a lot of chocolates and candies and which reminds me I have to cut down on them.
What can the world expect to see from Rushil Bhatnagar in the next 5 years?
To not be falling in the shower and creating art which makes me a happy person!
Insight to the making of zine:
A lot is based on personal experiences, stories we have heard or experienced on our own. Bollywood supports the zine in no other way as being the biggest medium of promoting sex as a taboo which happens behind the closed doors. BEDx Talks is a small initiative to open those doors.
Buy and read BEDx zines here right now. Also read us interviewing more cool artists.