Between Princely India and the British Raj: The Photography of Raja Deen Dayal | Level 3, Hilary and Galen Weston Wing

Until January 12, 2014

Hilary and Galen Weston Wing, Level 3

Raja Deen Dayal (1844 – 1905) was the first Indian photographer to earn international renown. Noted for remarkable beauty, aesthetic nuance and technical skill, Deen Dayal's photographs capture the architectural heritage of India, its landscape and people, and provide a lens through which we can explore a dynamic time in India's history and the role Deen Dayal had in fashioning a new identity for an emerging nation.

Born in Sardhana, near Delhi, he trained as a surveyor in the mid-1860s and took up photography in the mid-1870s. Over the course of his remarkable career, he ran three successful studios, had over fifty staff, and produced more than 30,000 images. In 1894, he was appointed court photographer to the sixth Nizam of Hyderabad, one of the wealthiest men in the world at the time.

The haunting beauty of his images reflect the extraordinary talent of Deen Dayal as a master of the photographic process, while his ability to make the images speak to the viewer played a critical role in how India's past came to be visualized. His photographs remain some of the most iconic views of India today.

This exhibition features over 100 works from three major collections, including the ROM's collection of photograph albums produced by his studio in the latter decades of the 19th century. It also features one of the cameras used by the Dayal Studio in the last decade of the 19th century.

The exhibition is presented in association with The Alkazi Collection of Photography, New Delhi, and coincides with a major new publication "Raja Deen Dayal: Artist-Photographer in 19th-century India." It is a feature exhibition of the 2013 Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival. CONTACT is supported by the Canada Council for the Arts, Celebrate Ontario, the Ontario Arts Council and the Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund.






Comment by Habeeb Al-Aidroos

Hello Deepali:
Congratulations on the Deen Dayal Exhibition. I grew up in Hyderabad and the Deen Dayal Studios (son and grandson) were a family matter for us. They were the appointed photographers for all major Hyderabad Army events and then for family weddings etc. I'll definitely drive down to Toronto for another peek at the ROM. Its been a long time. Perhaps I could pass by your office and say hello.
Habeeb Al-Aidroos
Lakefield, ON

Comment by Christine Stockdale

I am glad your exhibition is running until next January as I want to take the opportunity to visit. I am hoping to visit india in the near future

Comment by Leslie Fernande...

Feb.3.2015....tonight I just saw the program on TVO on the Indian photographer Raja Dean Dayal and I am sorry that I missed this exhibition.
Since I am very interested in Indian History,Art and Architecture would you please put me down on your mailing list so I can be warned in advance of upcoming exhibitions on India.......Thank You.

Comment by Lead Concierge

We don't have a mailing list for upcoming exhibitions, but our website has that information often well in advance.  Please check our Exhibitions section periodically for all the upcoming shows and events.