About a decade ago, Hotel Kemps Corner, tucked away in a by-lane of tiny Kemps Corner fell on difficult times and recently was ready to face the wrecker’s ball. In the process, a vital slice of Mumbai’s history would have bitten the dust but the hotel has now been resurrected to enshrine Mumbai’s swashbuckling past. The petite 31-room property threw open its doors recently to tourists, looking to stay in one of Mumbai’s most expensive precincts at an affordable price where the past comes calling at every step.
The artworks echo the names of the rooms which in turn recall Mumbai landmarks and icons—The Dabbawallas, and The Ghetto, for instance. In the former, a mountain of dabbas is shouldered by an army of dabbawallas while in The Ghetto (named after Arthur Road jail), birds are squished and trapped in a bird cage guarded by an overweight cop and a few striped zebras that float around; their stripes reminiscent of a jailbird’s uniform. The Opera, The Lost Island, The Grandma’s Shoe all evoke Mumbai’s beloved sights for the passing wayfarer who chooses to doss down at the hotel.
style : acrylic paints + oil paints + water colours
medium : originally hand painted artwork printed on canvas with wall decal spills.
photographs : saee burke
architect : Insitu & Studio RAP
CLIENT: Hotel Kemps Corner
LOCATION: Kemps Corner, Mumbai