The streets of Mumbai, the most populous city in India, are home to about 300,000 street vendors who earn their living solely through street side hawking. Periodic government raids attempt to crack down on unauthorized peddling and clear the pavements of these encroachments. In this work artist-activist Tushar Joag, a Mumbai native and self-proclaimed intervention artist, satirizes one such raid. His organization, UNICELL (www.unicellpwc.org), a proprietary concern that designs utility products for the citizens of todays over populated megapolises is neither citizen nor state commissioned yet works on behalf of both.
The large bulldozers, symbolizing the governmental assault on street dwellers, stand baffled as Joag's Street Vendors Mimetic Scheme comes into effect, camouflaging the rehri-wallahs (cart-pushers) wares as red post boxes. UNICELL designed fold-up vending tables that quickly morph into post boxes to avoid being destroyed/confiscated and thus eliminate stress and unpleasantness for both street vendors and municipal authorities. Joags work comments on issues of contemporary urbanity in India, utilizing creativity and design ideas to give voice and provide alternatives to the marginalized in society.