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Political conservation: Schowcasing practice and lobbying government in Shekhawati, India
Sabine Cotte, professor during workshop #3 in Le Prince Haveli
Lily Bennion, graduated student during the workshop #3
The Shekhawati Project act on two main areas:
Firstly, advocacy for the region’s economic revival through development of sustainable tourism, in close liaison with local entrepreneurs, to preserve traditional skills and promote adapted reuse of the buildings for the local community. The project works with its regional connections to lobby local governments to implement protective measures for the monuments, including town infrastructures and city services such as waste management, which impact directly on the condition of the buildings and their frescoes.
Secondly, international collaboration in interdisciplinary workshops; students and graduates in architecture and conservation from Europe, India and Australia work each year on the frescoes’ conservation. Showing how conserved paintings can have an immediate visual impact in a busy urban environment, this acts as an incentive for Haveli owners to conserve and rehabilitate their properties. The economic and political benefits from rehabilitating this heritage are important for the region, in terms of employment, cultural dynamism and health through well managed urban planning.