The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston

Modernism on the Ganges: Raghubir Singh Photographs

Saturday, Mar. 3, 2018 – Sunday, Jun. 3, 2018


“A dazzling selection” —Wall Street Journal

Raghubir Singh pushed the genre of street photography into a world of living color. Born in Jaipur, Rajasthan, to an aristocratic Indian family, Singh (1942–1999) lived in Hong Kong, Paris, London, and New York—but his eye was perpetually drawn back to his native India.

The retrospective Modernism on the Ganges: Raghubir Singh Photographs traces the full trajectory of the visionary photographer’s career through nearly 90 images, from his early work in the late 1960s to his last, unpublished projects of the late 1990s. After starting his career as a photojournalist, Singh soon began to pursue an artistic vision that stood, as he put it, “on the Ganges side of Modernism.”

Singh was deeply influenced by the work of famed French photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson and the cinematic vision of Bengali filmmaker Satyajit Ray. Yet unlike his artistic role models, Singh was never tempted to shoot in black and white. Working with a handheld camera and color slide film, he recorded India’s dense milieu in complex, frieze-like compositions: teeming with incident, fractured by reflections, and often framed by the curved windows of India’s iconic car, the Ambassador.

This important survey of Singh’s work coincides with Peacock in the Desert: The Royal Arts of Jodhpur, India, an exhibition of royal Indian treasures on view in the Law Building. The concurrent presentations offer Museum visitors the opportunity to view the type of Indian court paintings that informed Singh’s photographic style over the course of his storied career.

The illustrated exhibition catalogue is available through the MFA Shop (713.639.7360) and the Museum’s Hirsch Library (713.639.7325).


  • Tuesday - Wednesday, 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
    Thursday, 10:00 am - 9:00 pm
    Friday - Saturday, 10:00 am - 7:00 pm
    Sunday, 12:15 pm - 7:00 pm
    Monday: Closed (Except Monday Holidays). Closed Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.
  • General Admission: MFAH Members-FREE Adult-$15 ($14 Online); Senior (65+) $10 ($9 Online); Youth (13-18) $7.50 ($6.50 Online); Child (12 & younger) FREE; Military (ID Required) $10; Student (ID Required) $7.50 Ticketed exhibitions require an additional admission charge. Free Hours: FREE THURSDAY 10 am - 9 pm

Directions & Parking

  • Free Parking
  • Paid Parking
  • Street Parking
  • Make visiting a snap! Enlarge the map to see main-campus parking options, or download the PDF

    Parking update: A new underground parking garage, located on Montrose Boulevard, is now open!

    • The outdoor parking lot on Bissonnet, across from the Law Building, is closed permanently.
    • Parking is available in two garages: an above-ground garage at 1144 Binz Street, and a new underground garage at 5101 Montrose Blvd.
    • Guests with limited mobility: We recommend that you use the covered drop-off lane at the Main Street entrance to the Beck Building, or use wheelchair-accessible parking in the garage at 1144 Binz Street.

    Parking Garage Locations

    • 1144 Binz Street
    • 5101 Montrose Boulevard

    Parking Fees*

    Parking payments may be made only with a major credit card. Also accepted: MasterCard and Visa debit cards.
    MFAH Members Visitors
    0–30 minutes FREE FREE
    31 minutes–4 hours $6 $10
    4–12 hours $10 $18
    12–24 hours $35 $35
    *Parking is free for MFAH visitors who enter the Museum between 5 p.m. and 9 p.m. on Thursdays. General admission to the Museum is free on Thursdays, courtesy of Shell.


    Both parking garages are open daily from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Special Offers / Dining

Paolo Fronza, from Fellini Caffè, runs this sophisticated dining operation. Enjoy an array of Italian-inspired fare with a Texas flair, a European-style coffee bar, a kids menu, and much more at the MFA Café, located on the lower level of the Beck Building.

Events at The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston

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