Virkein Dhar

Entrepreneur, Creative Producer, Systems Designer, Architect

My creative practice lies at the intersection of strategic design, creativity and storytelling.

I lead Poppy Seed Lab, a genre-agnostic creative studio that cross-pollinates experiments across immersive storytelling, innovation research and strategic action, to seed creative, humane and resilient futures in Asia. The lab crafts narratives that bring together unlikely agents, designs curatorial strategies and stakeholder engagement processes for strategic action, and produces art and performance based experiences.

I am also building Sundooq an artisanal brand to inspire young people to cook, making their everyday experience more flavourful, beautiful and memorable. This entrepreneurial journey is driven by an interminable curiosity in food and the wish to create a future rooted with values of camaraderie and care.

In the past decade, I have engaged with various inter-disciplinary projects and initiatives as a curator, spatial designer, manager, facilitator, researcher and performer. Notably, I led IGNITE! Dance Festival, an international biennial with a focus on contemporary dance practices from India and South Asia; was part of the founding team at OddBird Theatre, a first of its kind, curated performance venue designed as a black box theatre in Delhi; led programme development at UnBox, a platform that instigates cross-disciplinary action towards the goal of re-imagining India's plural futures; and worked with SPACE10, a design and research lab based in Copenhagen, to curate and establish the programme for their first learning outpost in Delhi, India.

I have been a fellow at the School of International Futures as a special awardee of the (Next Generation Foresight Practitioners) NGFP Award 2020.

An alumna of the School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi, I've presented my work and have been part of multiple international fellowships and forums in the performing arts and design. I occasionally teach courses on cultural policy, curation and systems design.

I also volunteer my time with the Aman Movement, a research facility to develop technology-led solutions for improved management of social sector programmes of the Government of India.