An extensive exhibitions programme includes a strong focus on contemporary art. A series of curated exhibitions titled 'Engaging Traditions', invites artists to respond to the Museum’s collection, history and archives. These exhibitions are presented in the Kamalnayan Bajaj Special Exhibitions Gallery (KBG) in the main Museum building and may involve interventions into the vitrines holding the permanent collections. The Museum also hosts exhibitions in collaboration with galleries and other institutions in the Special Project Space (SPS) in the Museum Plaza. The Museum has successfully partnered with international museums and institutions to showcase contemporary artists and exhibitions which relate to the Museum’s permanent collection.
A series of curated exhibitions titled 'Engaging Traditions', invites artists to respond to the Museum’s collection, history and archives, addressing issues that speak directly to
the traditions and issues that underlie the founding of the Museum, yet evoke the present by challenging orthodoxies and questioning assumptions. Several distinguished contemporary artists including Jitish Kallat, Sudarshan Shetty, L.N. Tallur and Ranjini Shettar have participated in this programme.
Through collaborations with international institutes, the Museum has hosted several exhibitions. Contemporary Photography and the Olympic Posters were presented from the V&A Museum, London. German artist Eberhard Havekost's works were presented in collaboration with the Dresden State Art Collections and the exhibition Social Fabric was showcased with INIVA (Institute of International Visual Arts) London, and the Goethe-Institut, Max Mueller Bhavan, Mumbai. The Museum collaborated with the Guggenheim Museum, New York, to present the BMW Guggenheim Lab in Mumbai,and the Ermenegildo Zegna group on the project ZegnArt Public in 2013. Most recently, the Museum hosted an acclaimed masterpiece of the Florentine Renaissance, Lorenzo Ghiberti’s (Italian, 1378-1455) The Gates of Paradise (1425-52), through a special collaboration with the Guild of the Dome Association, Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz, Max-Planck-Institute, and the Museum of the Opera del Duomo. Folk Archive, a vibrant, visual account of contemporary popular British culture was held in collaboration with the British Council.
By Dayanita Singh
‘Suitcase Museum’ is a collection of 44 objects from Dayanita Singh’s Museum of Chance (Steidl, 2015). Two suitcases make up this museum, presaging the future form of the museum and both condensing and expanding its boundaries. Singh challenges traditional and existing concepts of photography and pushes the medium to speak through other forms like the book, the museum and the archive.
At the Dr. Bhau Daji Lad Museum, which inspired Dayanita Singh early in her career, she appropriates the Museum’s syntax and structure, its formal as well as its ideological function to present new ways of looking at and engaging with objects.
By Marie Velardi
In collaboration with Swiss Arts Council ProHelvetia at the Special Project Space
Marie Velardi employs fact and fiction, to both imagine and question the future. Her work closely examines movements of the earth, such as the continuous shift between land and sea, as seen in the work titled ‘Terre-Mer’, or Sea-Land. Pages of a hypothetical Book of Possible Futures, with a series of watercolor drawings named ‘Temporal Maps’ includes short texts in English and Marathi, inspired by discussions with Indian women on their hopes for the future.