Monument Conservation in Nepal- My Experience with the World Heritage Sites of Kathmandu Valley

Monument Conservation in Nepal- My Experience with the World Heritage Sites of Kathmandu Valley

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Book Specification

Item Code: AZG864
Author: Shaphalya Amatya
Language: ENGLISH
Edition: 2007
ISBN: 9789937506014
Pages: 258 (Throughout B/w Illustrations)
Other Details 8.50x5.50 inch
Weight 300 gm

Book Description

About the Author
Shaphalya Amatya (b1944), a distinguished art and culture critic, has worked in various positions in the Department of Archaeology and Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation of the Government of Nepal. He has written extensively on the issues of conservation and preservation of Nepalese art and culture. Dr. Amatya was educated first at Tribhuvan University where he received his Master's degree in History and later at Jawahar Lal Nehru University, New Delhi where he received a M.Phil and Ph.D. in History. He has authored more than a dozen books in Nepali and English languages. His most noted published works include, Archaeology in Nepal (Nepali) (Sajha Prakashan, Kathamandu, 1980), Some Aspects of Cultural Policy in Nepal (UNESCO, 1983), Art And Culture Of Nepal: An Attempt towards Preservation, (Nirala Publications, New Delhi, First Edition, 1991), Bagmati: A Monument Guide (Heritage Nepal, Kathmandu,1992), Kathamandu Nagarayan (Nepali) (Urbanization of Kathmandu) (Royal Nepal Academy, Kathmandu, 1996), Art and Culture of Nepal: An Attempt towards Preservation, (Nirala Publications, Second Edition, 1999), Vishow Sampada: Kathamandu Upattyaka (Nepali) (World Heritage: Kathamandu Valley), (Unesco, Kathmandu, 2001), Pani Ra Samskriti (Nepali) (Water And Culture), (Nepal Water Corporation, Kathamandu, 2003). Rana Rule in Nepal, (Nirala Publications, New Delhi, 2004). Religious Dances of Nepal Mandala (The Kathmandu Valley), Chaka Dabu, Kathmandu, 2005 and Water And Culture (English Version), JVS, Kathmandu, 2006 Widely traveled cultural critic and historian, Dr. Amatya has been to USA, Japan, China, France, Germany, Italy, Australia, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Bangladesh, UK, Thailand, the Netherlands and Austria to lecture on the Nepalese art and culture and to participate in various International Seminars and conferences. A highly acclaimed scholar, Dr. Amatya has also contributed research articles in international publications such as Heritage of Kathmandu Valley: Proceedings of an Internal Conference in Lubeck, June 1985, (VGH Wissenschaftsverlag Sankt Augustin, 1987, Germany), Heritage of Asia And Oceania (ICOMOS, Sri Lanka, 1993), Journal of Bengal Art (The International Centre For Study of Bengal Art, Dhaka, Bangladesh, 2002) and many others. Currently, Dr. Amatya works as cultural consultant and lives in Kathmandu. He is the Executive Director of Heritage Nepal, a cultural consultancy firm. He is also a member of the Swapna Garden Development Board (Keshar Mahal). He has been awarded by Environment Millennium Award for Preserving Archaeological Heritage of Nepal in 2000 and Baburam Acharya Rastriya Pratibha Purashkar in History and Culture by HMG of Nepal in 1999.

The UNESCO World Heritage Convention of 1972 has three principal aims to promote global awareness and appreciation of the importance of protecting the world's cultural and natural heritage; to create recognition of the universal value of this heritage for all humanity, and to mobilize national and international resources for its protection.

More than 830 sites in 138 countries all over the world are now inscribed on the World Heritage List, and their number is constantly growing. Uniqueness, historical authenticity and integrity are basic criteria for inclusion.

The World Heritage Sites of the Kathmandu Valley of Nepal - in this richly-illustrated volume comprehensively presented in cultural historical perspective for the first time - deserve their place on the List for many reasons. They are true masterpieces of human creativity. They stand as unique testimony to a wide range of cultural traditions and religions. They represent exceptional examples of the architecture of many different epochs and lifestyles. The highly developed architectural art of the royal squares of the three main cities of the Valley - Kathmandu, Patan and Bhaktapur - transports the visitor to a realm of cosmic unity. As the anthropologist Mary Slusser has rightly noted, this is architecture intended to serve both man and the gods. Temples, shrines and landscape blend harmoniously, indicating the way to yet another dimension - a reality not of this world. With the recognition of the history of the human spirit and its artistic manifestations as 'culturally valuable', a process of sacralization enters the picture.

In the Kathmandu Valley, countless religious and secular ancient site of Hadigaon have shown that early buildings were constructed of baked bricks and timber, using mud mortar. As the Kathmandu Valley - indeed, the entire country of Nepal - lies in an active seismic zone, frequent earthquakes have damaged these monuments, to varying degrees. In times when there were fewer structures and less damage, monuments were easily restored. But during the Malla period in the 16th and 17th-centuries, so many edifices were built that the Valley became known as the home of temples and monuments, Ancient inscriptions have recorded many occasions of monument construction and restoration, but rarely mention the details of such repairs and restoration work. Therefore, very little is known about approaches to and techniques of maintenance and renewal of temples and houses in historic times. (Theophile and Gutschow, 2003, p.11).

From the late 18th-century, the Shah rulers and their collaterals (Thapas, Ranas, Basnets, Pandes and others) carried out considerable construction works in the Valley, but they failed to pay proper attention to maintaining the ancient monuments of earlier dynasties. H. Ambrose Oldfield, who was in Nepal during the time of Prime Minister Jung Bahadur Rana (1846-77), noted: 'It is quite different with the Gorkha Government.

**Contents and Sample Pages**

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