Ajay Shah was born in 1964. After graduation from the National Institute of Design (NID) in Ahmedabad, India in 1988, he founded his own studio Circus Design Company. Here, Ajay designed furniture, fashion retail shops and appliance products. During this period he also co-founded Exemplar Systems Private Limited, a product manufacturing company where he continues to be a director. In addition to projects for clients, he designed a collection of products under the brand Circus2Circus which he self produced and distributed. Circus Design Company set new references for retail and entertainment spaces extending beyond product and space design into environmental graphics and wayfinding signage design.

In 2002 Circus Design Company was renamed Ajay Shah Design Studio (ASDS), with the intention of providing a comprehensive design solution across product, space and graphic design to provide identity.
ASDS established brands by applying design to formats across retail, cinema, food court, mall design and corporate design.

In 2010, he launched a product brand, Rubberband which has grown into a platform for design and collaboration. Rubberband products are now available in design and museum shops across the world. In 2012 he founded Industrial Playground, where he designed a collection of furniture. Rather than seeking a novelty value, the designs attempted to seek a visual language that combined materials and processes to arrive at forms that support the idea of normal-ness.

The furniture found applications to projects across multiple formats, including office and commercial spaces. In 2014, he converted his unusual studio space that was placed under a commercial busy over bridge into a studio and shop, which he called Everyday Project. The shop became a showcase for all his brands as well as products curated from across the world.
Today, the studio continues to consult clients from different sectors on design and branding and has diverse projects, some examples include; rebranding a legacy real estate developer, branding a startup in the frozen pizza business, designing wayfinding signage systems for business parks, and designing an all aluminium chair. Rubberband continues to develop new products, with continued collaborations with international artists such as Nathalie Du Pasquier, Anthony Burrill as well as design studios such as Big Game, Experimental Jetset, Selek Design and Floris Hovers.

Ajay’s furniture and products have been featured in several design magazines in India as well as in Wallpaper Magazine UK. And has been invited to be a part of a global forum held at the 100% Design show in London on the subject of Design in India. His designs ‘the table that almost wasn’t’, ‘Toy Chair’, and ‘Grid Seat’ have found a place in the Manchester Museum of Art.

© Ajay Shah 2024