When it comes to real weddings, inspiration can strike from anywhere. There are circus themes, pool parties, cocktail nights and more – but for the first time this year, we have seen a celebration like no other. The theme is as offbeat as they come – it’s a Van Gogh-inspired wedding in Pondicherry and we love the attention to detail and the recreation by Chennai-based wedding designer, Ambika Gupta of The A-Cube Project.
Ambika Gupta of The A-Cube Project had just one mandate, to create an intimate wedding setting inspired by farmhouse aesthetics, Impressionist art and loads of beautiful garden flowers – it was lush, stunning and just right. This destination wedding in Pondicherry was created for an artistically- inclined doctor couple, Prethee and Gautham who love Van Gogh and his creations had to be a part of the ceremony. For the welcome brunch at the boutique hotel Gratitude Heritage, Ambika designed the venue like a Van Gogh museum – complete with a gallery and an installation. A gallery of Van Gogh’s artwork, his recreations hung out with descriptions to bring guests in while his most important art – the Starry Night became a conversation-starter installation. There were larger-than-life props of sunflowers, lavender, and hayfields – such a regency feel to the whole thing.
For the engagement ceremony at Villa Shanti, another boutique space, Ambika recreated Claude Monet’s art and wove the design around the dreamy Gardens of Giverny. A stunning bridge acted as a backdrop to the ceremony while the whole villa was converted into an idyllic garden – exotic florals and serious centrepieces along with a canopy of twinkling fairy lights for that warm, comforting look.
The wedding at Our Lady of Angels Church was an all-white and powder blue event, inspired by Almond Blossoms, one of Van Gogh’s most famous paintings. A song inspired the design elements – La Vie en rose, the song to which the groom proposed to the bride. “The scale of this wedding may have been compact but the thought, care, ideas, and hard work invested were all second to none. The idea, as she always says, is to tell a personal story through design that has universal appeal,” explains Ambika.
“Well, incorporating Impressionist art of masters like Vincent Van Gogh and Claude Monet in an Indian wedding, you would agree, is unusual. It would be safe to say that there were no precedents I could fall back on. But the theme was so inspiring that I just dived in to immerse myself in the art of the era, particularly in the magical world of Van Gogh and Monet. The main feature of Impressionist art is light and spontaneity and that is what I wove the entire wedding around. ‘Walking on Sunshine’ became our theme and I imagined what it would have been like to go to the studios and homes of these artists. I had very vivid memories of the beautifully preserved Casa Azul in Mexico, which was once the home of Frida Kahlo and is now a museum of her memories. So I started designing spaces around the objects and art from the era of Van Gogh and Monet to recreate something similar,” explains Ambika.
As far as the design goes, there were installations with metal swirls, flowers, jute and hay to recreate elements from the paintings. Everything from furniture to linen, cushions and flowers were used to create that artful, warm vibe. “In the end, we were able to balance the art, romance, a welcoming vibe, comfort and joy in such a way. We were careful to not get carried away and still maintain the personal and intimate aspects of the wedding rather than turn it into an art exhibition,” adds Ambika.