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SAI HelpNepal funds the Gatlang Project by Srijanalaya

Sharareh Bajracharya Background

The April 25, 2015 earthquake and its aftershocks destroyed the homes of over 500 households in Gatlang VDC, Rasuwa.  Two years later, many people still live in scattered tents on the outskirts of the village.  Despite the loss of permanent shelters, activities such as weaving, herding, tilling the land, seed banks, gathering herbs, etc continue.  These are skills and knowledge developed and passed on by the Tamang people that demonstrate a deep relationship with this land.  The project, “Working with Earthquake-Affected Weavers in Rasuwa — Exploring Tamang Livelihood and Education Opportunities” was conceptualized as a way to find how these skills and their stories can lead to a source of livelihood for the people here. Through the support of SAI Nepal Help Initiative, what began with a one-month artists-in-residence in Gatlang, Rasuwa from 6 March to 6 April, 2016 has now evolved into a production of 10 sample bags using the textiles produced in Gatlang.  We are calling the designs for these bags the Gatlang Series.  A catalogue with the ten designs, design statements by the designers – Sanjeep Maharjan, Sunita Maharjan, and Kirti Man Shakya – , and a description of the process is being completed. We have now selected five of these bags to produce and introduce to a market that promotes ethical trade.   The booklet gives us the exact dimensions of the bags, which we are using to calculate how much cloth we will need to produce 50 pieces of each of the five bags. We will be going to Gatlang in the last week of May, after the local elections are complete.  Mendo Tamang, who is one of the two people we worked with in the artists-in-residence will be leading the production, ensuring the quality of the materials according to the specifications of the bags.

The Process

During the artists-in-residence, two women from Gatlang, Mendo Tamang and Tar Jhyalmo Ghale Tamang, shared their expertise in weaving, embroidery, dyeing, sewing, and indigenous knowledge about agriculture and geography with two artists, Sunita Maharjan and Sanjeep Maharjan, and a designer, Kirti Man Shakya. During the one month, the team worked together to research, experiment with and create samples of textiles, raw materials, illustrations, preliminary designs of products, and artistic forms inspired by Gatlang.  The team became acquainted with each other’s skills, interests, and creative process.  They began to experiment with traditional weaves and textiles to create an array of products and product ideas. After returning to Kathmandu, the two artists and designer continued to explore designs for bags.  They have now each created a series of contemporary designs for bags that incorporate the weaving skills of the artisans and raw materials from Gatlang.  It is this process that has led to the Gatlang Series.

The Bags: Gatlang Series

The Gatlang Series consists of 10 bags that highlight the handwoven indigenous textiles of Rasuwa. This series is a tribute to the indigenous Tamang lifestyle of herding, shearing, weaving, and farming.  The rich, natural tones, durability and water resistance of the textiles is combined with the distinct aesthetics of each of the three designers. Each bag in the Gatlang Series is an effort to create viable and sustainable livelihoods of the earthquake ravaged Tamang community in Gatlang, Rasuwa. We look to create an industry that appreciates the indigenous Tamang skills, quality of their textile, and the history of its people.  Promoting these products in national and international markets is about bringing awareness of these communities’ struggles to a larger audience and demonstrating the integrity and dignity of their labor.

  • strengthen and revitalize indigenous traditional knowledge and skills of the community in Gatlang and to enable them to make it a source of income
  • design products that use the textiles and raw materials from Rasuwa to benefit earthquake affected Tamang artisans and community[1]
  • establish a manufacturing system that benefits the people of Gatlang and other earthquake affected communities

  The Gatlang Series has been made possible through South Asia Institute Nepal Help Initiative’s support of the project “Working with Earthquake-Affected Weavers in Rasuwa — Exploring Tamang Livelihood and Education Opportunities” from February 2016 to present.

Design Room and Srijanalaya present the GATLANG SERIES, Bags  CATALOGUE of Sample Products  Textile Production Mendo Tamang, Tar Jhyalmo Ghale Tamang, and a network of women from Gatlang

Bag Designers

Kirti Man Shakya, Sanjeep Maharjan, Sunita Maharjan  

Booklet Design: Kirti Man Shakya

About the Gatlang Series

Two hours of dirt road from Syafrubesi, Gatlang is the first stop on the Tamang Heritage Trail in Rasuwa. It is known for its majority Tamang community living in a tight-knit web of houses with stone laid walls, carved wooden faces, and roofs made of wooden shingles.  The April earthquake and its aftershocks destroyed all these homes.  Over five hundred households have been displaced and most people continue to live in scattered tents on the outskirts of the village, weathering the cold of the winter, winds, and the landslides during the monsoon.  The Gatlang Series consists of 10 bags that highlight the handwoven indigenous textiles of Rasuwa. This series is a tribute to the indigenous Tamang lifestyle of herding, shearing, weaving, and farming.  The rich, natural tones, durability and water resistance of the textiles is combined with the distinct aesthetics of each of the three designers. Each bag in the Gatlang Series is an effort to create viable and sustainable livelihoods of the earthquake ravaged Tamang community in Gatlang, Rasuwa. We look to create an industry that appreciates the indigenous Tamang skills, quality of their textile, and the history of its people.  Promoting these products in national and international markets is about bringing awareness of these communities’ struggles to a larger audience and demonstrating the integrity and dignity of their labor. strengthen and revitalize indigenous traditional knowledge and skills of the community in Gatlang and to enable them to make it a source of income

  • design products that use the textiles and raw materials from Rasuwa to benefit earthquake affected Tamang artisans and community[2]
  • establish a manufacturing system that benefits the people of Gatlang and other earthquake affected communities

[image of beauty of Gatlang as well as what has happened after the earthquake.  Should we put of Sanjeep’s Purpose of the Catalogue  There are two main purposes of this publication: document the details of how each of the ten sample bags have been stitched, each bag’s dimensions, and the textile options that can be used

  • document the concepts and process of how and why these bags were designed

  Background

The Gatlang Series was made possible through South Asia Institute Nepal Help Initiative’s support of the project “Working with Earthquake-Affected Weavers in Rasuwa — Exploring Tamang Livelihood and Education Opportunities” from February 2016 to January 2017. It began with a one-month artists-in-residence in Gatlang, Rasuwa from 6 March to 6 April, 2016.  The residency was organized a little less than a year after the earthquake. Two women from Gatlang, Mendo Tamang and Tar Jhyalmo Ghale Tamang, shared their expertise in weaving, embroidery, dyeing, sewing, and indigenous knowledge about agriculture and geography with two artists, Sunita Maharjan and Sanjeep Maharjan, and a designer, Kirti Man Shakya.  The team experimented with traditional weaves and textiles to create an array of products and product ideas. [images of the artworks and designs with captions and people’s photographs] During the one month, the team worked together to research, experiment with and create samples of textiles, raw materials, illustrations, preliminary designs of products, and artistic forms inspired by Gatlang.  The team became acquainted with each other’s skills, interests, and creative process. After returning to Kathmandu, the two artists and designer continued to explore designs for bags.  They have now each created a series of contemporary designs for bags that incorporate the weaving skills of the artisans and raw materials from Gatlang. It is this process that has led to the Gatlang Series.  

About Design Room  

Design Room is a social enterprise of artist-crafted goods in Nepal. Design Room looks to foster innovation and creativity for a sustainable future in Nepal.  One of the important tenets of the goods created is a conscientious use of materials and skills from Nepal.  Design Room will provide forty percent of its profit-shares to Srijanalaya to continue its mission to create safe spaces of learning through the arts.

About Srijanalaya  

Srijanalaya is a nonprofit, nongovernmental organization registered in Nepal in December 2013 whose mission is to create safe spaces of learning through the arts.  We are a growing community of artists and educators who offer creative mediums as an alternative approach to rote-learning and static textbooks.  We have designed art education programs both in and out of school, including museum education.  Currently, we have worked in Gorkha, Kaski, Kathmandu, Mugu, Rasuwa, Lalitpur, and Nawalparasi. We believe that every child in Nepal should have access to safe spaces to express herself or himself and be heard. www.srijanalaya.com  

Textiles of Gatlang

For generations, in the winter, sheep are herded, alongside yaks and cows, up and down a route that brings them down to the warmer areas near the Trisuli River.  They return up to the higher altitudes in the summer. Natural Tones: Reddish brown |  Off-white  |  Black/Dark Brown      

weaving5_DSCN4807 weaving7_DSCN4959 weaving9_IMG_1788

Brücken bauen – 50 Jahre Deutsch-Nepalische Gesellschaft

Am 6. Mai 2017 findet im Rahmen der 28. Jahrestagung der Deutsch-Nepalischen Gesellschaft e. V. ein Nepal-Tag im Rautenstrauch-Joest Museum in Köln statt, welcher unter dem Motto “Brücken bauen – 50 Jahre Deutsch-Nepalische Gesellschaft” steht. Prof. Axel Michaels (Seniorprofessor und ehemaliger Leiter der Abteilung Klassische Indologie, SAI) wird um 11.00 Uhr einen Vortrag zum Thema “Nepal und seine Stellung in der Welt” halten.

Programm des Nepal-Tag 2017 – Samstag, 6. Mai 2017
Programm als PDF-Datei zum Download
 
9.00 Uhr
Ankunft und Anmeldung
9.30 Uhr
Begrüßung, Gebet und Eröffnung
Moderation: Anne Sengpiel, stellv. Vorsitzende der DNG
Gebet mit Ani Choying Drolma, Unicef-Botschafterin, Nepal
Eröffnung durch Ram Pratap Thapa, Honorargeneralkonsul und Vorsitzender der DNG; Andreas Walter, Bürgermeister, Stadt Köln; Ramesh Prasad Khanal, Nepalischer Botschafter, Berlin
10.00 Uhr
Brücken bauen, ein halbes Jahrhundert lang
Dr. Manfred Kulessa, Bonn
10.20 Uhr
10.30 Uhr
Tanz – im Foyer / Rahmenprogramm im Foyer
Pause
11.00 Uhr
Nepal und seine Stellung in der Welt
Prof. Axel Michaels, Heidelberg
11.50 Uhr
Politiktransfers oder Beobachterstatus – ehemalige Botschafter in Kathmandu blicken zurück (Diskussion)
Moderation: Norbert Meyer, Bad Honnef, mit Dr. Karl-Heinz Krämer
12.30 Uhr
Investment Opportunities and Challenges in Nepal
Jiba Lamichhane, Kathmandu
anschließend Fragerunde mit Saraswati Maharjan und Kumar Panta, Kathmandu
13.00 Uhr
Mittagspause – Programm im Foyer
14.00 Uhr
Medizinische Entwicklung in Nepal
Priv. Doz. Dr. med. Malakh Lal Shrestha, Hannover
14.30 Uhr
Die Nepal Stiftung –
Grundstein für eine nachhaltige Entwicklung der DNG
Ram Pratap Thapa, Köln
14.40 Uhr
Mesmerising Mithila Art Residing in Everyone’s Heart
Sangita Giri& Awadesh K. Das, Kathmandu/Janakpur
14.50 Uhr
Im Zeichen des Erdbebens – Wiederaufbau eingestürzter Tempel auf dem Durbar Platz in Patan
Dr. Niels Gutschow, Bhaktapur/Heidelberg
15.20 Uhr
Im Mittelraum der transnationalen Arbeitsmigration: Arbeitsvermittllungs-Agenturen und -agenten in Nepal
Prof. Dr. Ulrike Müller-Böker, Zürich
15.50 Uhr
Pause
16.10 Uhr
Berufsausbildung: Prospektiven für Jugendliche um die nachhaltige und geordnete Entwicklung des Landes
Dipl.-Ing. Pawan Dhakal, Heidelberg
16.40 Uhr
Gut unterrichtet nach dem Beben.
Bildungschancen für Nepals KInder in Notsituationen
Marc Tornow, Hamburg
17.10 Uhr
Air Pollution in Nepal
Dr. Maheswar Rupakheti, Berlin
17.40 Uhr
Social Trekking – Nepal-Tourismus abseits der ausgetretenen Pfade
Dr. med. Arne Drews, Grimma
18.10 Uhr
Tourism in Nepal is Going Online
Liladhar Bhandari, Lalitpur
18.20 Uhr
Tanz, Clowns und Musik im Foyer
19.30 Uhr
Nepalisches Abendessen im Foyer
Es lädt ein: Ramesh Prasad Khanal, Nepalischer Botschafter, Berlin

20.30 Uhr
Ende
Rahmenprogramm im Foyer:
Tänze aus Nepal
– Mithila-Kunst-Ausstellung
– Clowns ohne Grenzen in Nepal
– Bücher rund um den Himalaya
– Nepal-AG der Gesamtschule Mechernich
– Postkarten aus Bhaktapur
– Tombola für Nepal mit Ute Repgen
– Going-Nepal, Liladhar Bhandari (Kathmandu)
– NGO-Basar der Nepal-Organisationen in Deutschland
– SAbeena Karkee #SabsCast (Kathmandu)

 

Weitere Informationen erhalten Sie hier.
http://www.deutsch-nepal.de/nepaltag2017.php

SAI Help Nepal Update

Two years ago this week, Nepal was devastated by a major 7.8 magnitude earthquake. Another followed a few weeks later, leaving people even more helpless. Few of us can forget the shocking images of houses collapsed, and people and their belongings buried in the rubble; of centuries-old temples being reduced to dust as the ground shook. The South Asia Institute responded quickly. In the immediate aftermath of the disaster it founded the “Nepal Earthquake Relief Fund Heidelberg” (or more succinctly, SAI Help Nepal) to provide support for communities in need. Drawing on their familiarity with the country, researchers and faculty members of the SAI worked voluntarily together with coordinators on the ground. Since then around twenty short- and long-term projects have been focusing on humanitarian relief, children’s education, and the reconstruction of architectural heritage.   The most recent result to come out of this campaign is “Breaking Views,” a book co-authored by Christiane Brosius and Sanjeev Maharjan. It delves into the question how artists perceive everyday life after a catastrophe. What meaning does art have in the context of an earthquake, and what can it do? The book brings together the expertise of artists, curators, an art historian, and an anthropologist to offer a set of perspectives that bear witness as much to friction and fragility as to perseverance and resilience. It is testimony to how young artists in Nepal have responded to social and urban change, and how the earthquake in particular inspired creative responses to help others. The book was launched at Tangalwood Hotel during the Kathmandu International Art Festival, also called the Kathmandu Triennale, in March 2017.

Photo 1

“Breaking Views,” co-authored by Christiane Brosius and Sanjeev Maharjan, is published by Himalbooks, 2017. 

Photo 2

Christiane Brosius during the book launch at Tangalwood Hotel in Kathmandu. – Photo by Rajendra Shakya

Further, a seventeenth-century public rest house (pati) in a neighborhood of Patan, which collapsed during the earthquake, was rebuilt and handed over to the community. Reconstruction work was carried out with financial assistance from the Barbara and Wilfried Mohr Foundation, Germany. The dismantling of the structural remains of the pati began in August 2016, and the rebuilding, under the guidance of architect Padma Sundar Maharjan, was completed in March 2017. The pati now will again be a significant meeting place for the local Newar community.

Photo 3

The reconstructed pati in Patan. – Photo by Christiane Brosius

Photo 4

Local musicians are performing during the handing over ceremony in March 2017. – Photo by Padma Sundar Maharjan 

Reconstruction of the Char Narayan Temple also progressed speedily. After carpenters removed rotted wooden parts and replaced the damaged sections with new timber, woodcarvers skillfully restored carving details. Finally, stonemasons excavated the foundation around pillars and repaved the foundation with bricks bound with mud mortar. Today many talk of how the earthquake brought an end to life as they knew it. But they also describe it as a beginning, filled with new hopes. At the same time, government distribution of earthquake reconstruction grants for private houses has been slow, and entire communities are still waiting for support from state bodies. That is why we now feel obliged to raise awareness that people in Nepal still need your help. Please do consider donating again. Click on the link to learn about our past and ongoing projects, and the details of our donation account.

With gratitude,

Nadine Plachta, with Christiane Brosius and Axel Michael, Manik and Ritu Bajracharya, Niels Gutschow, Rajan Khatiwoda, Roberta Mandoki, Marcus Nüsser, and Davide Torri.

New Book “Breaking Views. Engaging Art in Post-Earthquake Nepal”

Christiane Brosius & Sanjeev Maharjan

Breaking Views. Engaging Art in Post-Earthquake Nepal

with Essays by Dina Bangdel, Sheelasha Rajbhandari, Hit Man Gurung

bro

Abstract

How do artists look at their lifeworld after a catastrophe such as the earthquake in Nepal 2015? What does art mean in this context, what can it ‘do’? This book is a collaborative effort responding to these and other questions. It brings together the expertise of artists and curators, an art historian and an anthropologist, to offer a set of perspectives that reflect friction, fragility and precarity as much as perseverance and resilient strongholds. Centre-stage of the book are the photographs, interviews and an installation of artist Sanjeev Maharjan. They are discussed as a careful reflection of those weeks and months after the earthquake hit, but beyond that also invite us to address the broader context of art’s role in society, and of an urbanising world in flux. Lastly, the different views in this book also facilitate the ‘breaking’ of dominant narratives of catastrophe that often overshadow individual experiences by means of heightened sensationalism. Continue reading New Book “Breaking Views. Engaging Art in Post-Earthquake Nepal”

Media Coverage: A 349-year old pati reconstructed in Patan

The Himalayan Times:

Centuries-old pati, hit by 2015 earthquake, reconstructed in Patan

Lunchhen Nani Phalcha_Chabahal_Tangal_Patan KATHMANDU: A 349-year-old pati (inn), Lunchhen Nani Phalcha in Chabahal, Tangal of Patan, destroyed by the Gorkha Earthquake 2015, has been handed over to the community after its reconstruction, on Thursday. Christiane Brosius, representative of Nepal Earthquake Relief Fund Heidelberg, formally handed over the reconstructed pati to Shyam Gopal Maharjan, chief of the Chabahal Community Association, amid a function today. The community would do its best to ensure preservation and timely renovation of the pati, pledged the community chief Maharjan speaking at the programme, . Likewise, Brosius laid emphasis on the importance of preserving the culture of singing hymns by also preserving the patis. Researcher Rajendra Shakya outlined the history of the pati, saying that it was first built in 1668 AD and was later enlarged in 1712 AD. The reconstruction was carried out with the financial assistance from the Barbara and Wilfried Mohr Foundation, Hamburg via SAI Help Nepal of Heidelberg University in Germany. The dismantling of the pati had begun in August 2016 and the reconstruction was completed in March 2017. Mostly used by the elderly people for performing hymns and also for sitting, knitting or watching the life on the street or at the courtyard, the public rest house with the arcade was a key part of the social life until the earthquake incurred major damages to the structure.

 

Further articles are available on newaonlinenews.comeindepth.com and imagekhabar.com.  

 

A 349-year old pati reconstructed in Patan

March 23, 2017, Lalitpur – A 349-year old phalcā has been handed over to the community in Patan following its reconstruction. Dr. Christiane Brosius, representative of Nepal Earthquake Relief Fund Heidelberg (SAI Help Nepal), formally handed over the phalcā to Shyam Gopal Maharjan, chief of the Chabahal Community Association. The phalcā in Lunchhen Nani, Chabahal was badly damaged by the earthquake of spring 2015. The reconstruction was carried out with the financial assistance from the Barbara and Wilfried Mohr Foundation, Hamburg via SAI Help Nepal of Heidelberg University in Germany. Speaking at the handover celebration, Dr. Brosius laid emphasis on the importance of preserving the culture of singing bhajans by also preserving the phalcās. Dr. Axel Michaels of the Heidelberg University stressed on the need to preserve the open nature of the phalcā that welcomes the old and the young, men and women, Nepalis and foreigners. Also speaking at the function, Chabahal community chief Maharjan pledged that the community will do its best to ensure preservation and timely renovation of the phalcā, while also continuing the culture of bhajans. Architect Padma Maharjan explained about the complexities of reconstructing an old phalcā in traditional form. Researcher Rajendra Shakya outlined the history of the phalcā, saying that it was first built in 1668 AD and was later enlarged in 1712 AD. The bhajan team of Chabahal performed religious songs dedicated to various deities ahead of the handover. Donor Wilfried Mohr, who passed away few days ago, was also remembered at the program for his contributions. The dismantling of the phalcā began in August 2016 and the reconstruction was completed in March 2017. Mostly used by the elderly people for performing bhajans and also for sitting, knitting, or watching the life on the street or in the courtyard, the public rest house with arcaded platform was a key part of the social life until the earthquake incurred major damages to the phalcā. The South Asia Institute (SAI) of the Heidelberg University, Germany had launched a donation campaign entitled ‘SAI Help Nepal’ immediately after the massive earthquake of April 25, 2015. Besides the phalcā in Chabahal, SAI Help Nepal is also funding the reconstruction of Char Narayan Temple and Mani Mandap phalcās of the Patan Durbar Square that collapsed during the earthquake. SAI is active in Nepal with several academic projects and runs a branch office in Patan since 1987.

Continue reading A 349-year old pati reconstructed in Patan

Jeremy Spoon on “Disaster Transformations: Socio-Ecological Transitions Following the 2015 Nepal Earthquakes”

The Kathmandu Branch Office of Heidelberg University’s South Asia Institute

 invites you to its Lecture Series

Jeremy Spoon

Disaster Transformations:

Socio-Ecological Transitions Following the 2015 Nepal Earthquakes

Friday, 11 November 2016

4 pm

Yalamaya Kendra, Patan Dhoka, Lalitpur

This presentation shares on-going research that seeks to determine whether varied social and cultural structures, such as institutional context, connectivity, livelihood diversity and social memory are useful indicators of adaptive capacity and critical transitions following a natural disaster. It takes a coupled social-ecological systems approach and utilizes mixed quantitative and qualitative methods. The project focuses on the catastrophic 2015 Nepal earthquakes as a case study, which had approximately 9,075 deaths, more than 22,300 injuries and damaged or destroyed 755,500 homes. It engages both the anthropology of disaster and resilience literatures by combining the broader theorization of interdisciplinary, quantitative modeling in the critical transitions research with the more textured qualitative approaches of the social science of disaster.

***

Jeremy Spoon currently is an Associate Professor of Anthropology at Portland State University and a Research Affiliate at the Central Department of Anthropology at Tribhuvan University. He received an MA and PhD in Cultural Anthropology from the University of Hawai’i at Manoa. His research focuses on local ecological knowledge, mountainous protected areas, disaster management, and applied anthropology in the USA and the Nepalese Himalaya.

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This event is open to all.

Exhibition Kathmandu University

You are Cordially invited to the exhibition Kathmandu University #Rebuilding Bungamati in Park Gallery, Pulchowk, Lalitpur on 26 June, 2016 at 5:00 pm.
The Exhibition includes photography taken of rebuilding process at Bungamati and the works based on the theme Bungamati. The fonts developed by the Students of Kathmandu University, School of Arts, Center for Art and Design will also be released.

 Rebuilding-Bungamati

Audio and Visual Journey: Architecture in Nepal

Work x Work & Kathmandu Valley Preservation Trust published an Audio and Visual Journey on

Architecture in Nepal – Personal Stories of Culture and Living Heritage http://kvptstories.org/

It includes among other things portrays of SAI HELP NEPAL supporters

  • Niels Gutschow, historian, documentarian, & architect. He joins in documenting the historic temples of the Kathmandu Valley and preserving it’s culture.
  • Rohit Ranjiktar, Nepal Program Director of the Kathmandu Valley Preservation Trust, shares why he has devoted his life to conserving the extraordinary monuments that define his home city.

journ