Swapnaa Tamhane: Mobile Palace

Swapnaa Tamhane: Mobile Palace
  • Closed
March 12, 2022 to August 1, 2022
  • Level 3, Third Floor Centre Block
FREE for Members
Pattern and colour unlock the power of new perspectives.


Contemporary artist Swapnaa Tamhane brings together layered fabric compositions that challenge traditional hierarchies between art and craft in the exhibition Swapnaa Tamhane: Mobile Palace, organized by ROM.

Bold and immersive, Tamhane's first solo museum exhibition features three large, cotton cloth installations created from long lengths of printed and embroidered fabric. Drawing on India's rich textile history and inspired by Mughal and Ottoman tents used as mobile palaces, these tent-like forms are re-imagined. The artist's materials invoke the legacy of cotton in India as a form of colonial resistance and visitors are encouraged to experience the rich, sweeping flows of fabric from different vantages, to better explore and appreciate the artistic vision.

Tamhane worked in a collaborative creative process with artists based in Gujarat, India, including dyer and printer Salemamad Khatri, wood block carver Mukesh Prajapati, and the Qasab-Kutch Craftswomen embroidery collective. Designing motifs, appliqué and beading to create punctuated interruptions in the repetition of patterns, the artist asks us to consider the spaces in-between.

Beautiful and relevant, the exhibition's visual depth, contemporary narrative lens, and immersive environment provide a powerful experience for sight and mind.

Please note: This exhibition is composed of structured and suspended lengths of fabric installed as an immersive experience. While we encourage walking around and among the installations where allowed, we ask that visitors do not touch the objects on display. Even mild touching, over time, will cause damage. We appreciate your understanding and thank you for protecting our collections and exhibitions.

This exhibition is generously supported by the Royal Exhibitions Circle

Canada Council for the Arts logo

We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts.

Select works in the exhibition were also created through the support of ROM's IARTS Textiles of India Fund.