When people think of diversity in Houston, the first thing that comes to mind is its expansive food scene. And while the Bayou City offers the best international tastes, the museums bring culture from around the world for art-lovers to enjoy without leaving the city limits. This spring, many institutions are highlighting India and giving Houstonians a reason to get their Bollywood on! The arts scene is bursting at the seams with exhibits showcasing the rich culture and history of India and we’ve got the lowdown on them all. 

FotoFest International, the first and longest-running worldwide photography biennial, features 48 artists and will be among the largest presentations of contemporary art ever exhibited in the United States. Visitors can view the exhibition INDIA: Contemporary Photographic and New Media Art from March 10 – April 22 at three adjacent spaces in Houston’s Washington Avenue Arts District, and in a new collaboration, in the Louisa Sarofim Gallery at the Asia Society Texas Center in the Museum District. 

Photography, videos and installations will be on view at the Asia Society Texas Center as an extension of the FotoFest Biennial. These will focus on the large geopolitical role India plays in Asia, as well as the rest of the world. 

The Contemporary Arts Museum Houston is presenting a series of 48 photographs and first-person texts depicting a portrait of the LGBTQ+ lives in India today. Titled Dissent and Desire, lead FotoFest curator Sunil Gupta and Charan Singh give an unprecedented look into the daily routines, work, home and lives of these individuals from various backgrounds. This powerful exhibit is a cannot miss event. The free exhibit is on display from January 20 – April 29. 

For those who love to view the beautiful, gold and ornate relics from the past, the Museum of Fine Arts’ Peacock in the Desert is the perfect way to spend the day. More than 250 masterpieces, majority of which have never been seen outside palace walls, will be on display. Lavish jewels, armor, ceremonial objects and intricate furnishings from the Rathore dynasty will fill the museum halls for you to ooh and ahh over. An additional installation, India Through the Camera’s Eye, is held in conjunction with Peacock in the Desert and presents historical photographs of India’s landscapes and architecture made at the dawn of the 20th century. 

Lastly, the retrospective Modernism on the Ganges traces the full career of legendary photographer Raghubir Singh through nearly 90 images. These photographs will be open to public until June 3 and free for children 12 and under also at the Museum of Fine Arts. 

For more information on what’s happening at Houston museums, visit our list of current exhibitions