Year : 2012-2013
Conservation of Bhootnath temple, Mandi, Himachal Pradesh
INTACH team was initially entrusted with the task of cleaning the layers of enamel paint applied over the exterior and interior walls of the temple. However, during investigation, the team discovered the presence of layers of plaster beneath the enamel paint and also detailed fine stone carving beneath these plaster layers. On further research it was revealed that in 1904, there was an earthquake in the region which caused major structural damage to the temple. During this time, for the protection of the temple local plaster was applied on the lower sections of the stone walls of the temple. This application in a very unscientific manner obscured the fine carved tiers on the base as well as the details on the stone. With time, plaster was re-applied a number of times extending even up to the middle section of the temple and was even replaced by cement plaster at a later date. Later on, enamel paint was applied both on the interior and exterior walls of the temple. The first phase of conservation work involved removal of paint as well as plaster layers. The work started in November 2012 and by Mahashivratri (March 2013), the most important event in the temple, the first phase of the conservation work was complete. The second phase will involve structural repair work and paving.
Conservation of Murals at Mangyu Gompa, Ladakh
A team of conservators from the Centre were stationed in Mangyu, Ladakh from July to September working on the conservation of the three main walls inside the 12th Century Chenrezig Lakhang temple adorned with priceless paintings. The project is being sponsored by Shinnyo-en, Japan. The conservation work for this season involved mainly detailed documentation of the paintings. This involved textual, photographic and graphical documentation of the painted surfaces and scientific analysis of pigments and plaster for understanding the different layers in the paintings and damages present therein. The conservation plan for the coming year will be based on the information gained through this process. Emergency conservation works were also undertaken to prevent further damage to the art work as the team will be carrying out further conservation only next year. Two PhD scholars from Courtauld Institute of Art were also involved in this phase of the project. One monk from Likir monastery and few local villagers will be associated with the team during the project time to learn basic preventive conservation so that necessary measures can be undertaken by the monastery if a need rises in the future. Mr. Sandeep Kumar, Senior Conservator also visited Phugthal Monastery and Muney Monastery in Zanskar, Ladakh to assess the condition of wall paintings, a preliminary report has been prepared for submission to the Tourism Department, Ladakh.
Rajiv Gandhi foundation
Two conservators assessed the condition of the works by the famous artist, M.F. Husain collection belonging to the Rajiv Gandhi foundation in March 2012. The entire collection was restored this year. While some of the works in the storage were restored at the site, other large canvases by the artist were brought to the Centre and the work was completed successfully.
Jawaharlal Nehru University
The Conservation of a large mural (10 ft by 8 ft) by Shamshad Husain displayed at the Social studies department was completed by the team of conservators working on the site. The large mural is a mixed media artwork comprising of metallic sheets, photographs, painted wooden boards and canvases and even decorations using iron nails. The work also involved installation of proper lighting as well as an overhanging protective shade.
Private Collection of paintings by artist B.M. Anand
The Centre restored paintings by B.M. Anand which belong to the private collection owned by his family. The entire lifetime work of the artist is being restored by the Centre which will eventually be complied in the form of a Coffee Table Book.