Treasures of a Desert Kingdom: The Royal Arts of Jodhpur, India

  • Closed
March 9, 2019 to September 2, 2019
  • Level B2, Garfield Weston Exhibition Hall
Explore the spectacular royal arts of one of India’s greatest former kingdoms, Jodhpur, Rajasthan


Alluring jewellery, lavish tents and canopies, vibrant paintings, and opulent decorative arts tell stories of kingship, strategic alliances, the role of women and life at court. Amassed over the course of nearly four centuries, these treasures reflect the history and artistic legacy of the Rathore dynasty, one of the longest continuous royal lineages in the world, that ruled this desert kingdom until India’s independence in 1947.

Treasures of a Desert Kingdom features masterpieces drawn from the collection of the former royal family, most of which are on display outside their palace setting for the very first time. While the stunning objects highlight India’s multifaceted past, they reveal a lasting cosmopolitan culture that was sustained by a delicate balance between local and external influences, and tradition and modernity.

Tours of this exhibition are offered by trained volunteer Docents Mondays - Fridays at 12:00. Tour cost is for members is $4.50 and $5.00 for non-members. Meet by the dinosaur in the Gloria Chen Court Level 1. More information available here.

Join us for a series of special performance in the exhibtion August 24, 25, 31 and September 1. Performance times: 11:30 am, 12:30 pm, 1:30 pm, 2:30 pm

Aug. 24 - Rajesh Kumar Sant (sitar)

Aug. 25 - Mandeep Gandhi (tabla)

Aug. 31 - Rajesh Kumar Sant (sitar)

Sept. 1 - Mandeep Gandhi (tabla)


Teaser Video
Inside the Exhibition
Diamond anklet on yellow cloth.

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Welcome to Reflections on Royal India, a three-part podcast inspired by the exhibition "Treasures of a Desert Kingdom: The Royal Arts of Jodhpur, India.’ This exhibition is being presented at the Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto from March 9 to September 2, 2019. The podcast takes a deeper dive into themes related to the exhibition, exploring concepts such as the figure of the Rajput, the role of women in medieval Indian courts, and how caste played out in the Rajasthan's courtly traditions. It also offers the listeners an understanding of South Asian art and culture more broadly. Reflections on Royal India is created and hosted by Aparita Bhandari. It's produced by Deepali Dewan, ROM’s Dan Mishra Curator of South Asian Arts & Culture. It is generously supported by the Dan Mishra South Asia Initiative.

This exhibition is organized by the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston with the collaboration of the Mehrangarh Museum Trust, Jodhpur, India.

Authored by: Cheryl Fraser