Sameer Farooq and Mirjam Linschooten, from The Museum of Found Objects: Toronto (Maharaja and --), 2011.

Sameer Farooq and Mirjam Linschooten, from The Museum of Found Objects: Toronto (Maharaja and--), 2011. © 2011 Sameer Farooq and Mirjam Linschooten.

The Museum of Found Objects: Toronto (Maharaja and --)

February 5 to April 6, 2011


The Museum of Found Objects: Toronto (Maharaja and–) is an archive of everyday objects sourced from the Greater Toronto Area's South Asian neighbourhoods. It is also a response to the AGO exhibition Maharaja: The Splendour of India's Royal Courts, and aims to make connections between the lavish historic objects of Maharaja and more ordinary, present-day items.

Toronto-based artist Sameer Farooq and his Paris, France-based collaborator Mirjam Linschooten apply the typical functions of a museum – collecting, preparing, interpreting and displaying – to a selection of objects collected from neighbourhoods in Brampton, Mississauga, Scarborough and Milton. By introducing non-precious, surprising and mundane objects into a place of importance, their work challenges the ways in which museums typically portray "culture."

The Museum of Found Objects was first developed as a commission from the Turkish Ministry of Culture for the Istanbul 2010 European Capital of Culture.

Visit for daily updates as the museum's collection grows.

Co-presented by the Art Gallery of Ontario and SAVAC (South Asian Visual Arts Centre)


Sameer Farooq (Canada) and Mirjam Linschooten (France) collaborate on projects. Their work often (but not always) touches upon subjects of archiving, embedded power, the gap between language and object, advanced faking, site-specific reactions, sampling, continual reconsideration, paranoid hoarding, ordering, important choices, insider vs. outsider perspectives, the present and the future, class, the surface, type treatments, organization according to unidentifiable systems (and surrealist montage procedures), reproduction and representation, the construction of meaning, the wunderkammer, newspapers, facts, ways of disseminating data into the world, fiction and non-fiction, discourse and power, digital and actual ready-mades, traces, the public, signs and the symbolic order, and rewriting the present. Their work always aims to challenge hegemony and masculinist domination!


Since 1993, SAVAC (South Asian Visual Arts Centre) has been dedicated to the presentation and promotion of contemporary visual art by South Asian artists. SAVAC presents innovative programming, which critically explores issues and ideas shaping South Asian identities and experiences. SAVAC operates without a gallery space, but collaborates with various organizations locally, nationally and internationally to produce exhibitions, screenings, online projects and artistic interventions.

Organized by the Art Gallery of Ontario. Toronto Now is generously supported by The Contemporary Circle. Contemporary programming at the AGO is supported by the Canada Council for the Arts.

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