Impressed by Bollywood classics, architect Zoya Khan’s ‘Homes of Kashmir’ challenge catalogues historic bazaars and homes.
Inserting characters from cult Bollywood films, like these performed by Naseerudin Shah and Rekha in Umrao Jaan, and Meena Kumari and Nadira in Pakeezah, within the backdrop of the dying heritage bazaars of the 5,000-year-old metropolis of Srinagar, Zoya Khan, 31, an architect and heritage fanatic, is succeeding in placing a highlight on the waning architectural character of the J&Okay capital.
Created over the previous three years, Ms. Zoya’s thematic work ‘Homes of Kashmir’ is quick adorning the partitions of the Valley’s fashionable resorts and houses and, on the similar time, creating consciousness about misplaced heritage.
“I frequented the outdated metropolis whereas being a part of a staff drafting Srinagar’s grasp plan in 2017. My space of intervention was heritage. I went again to areas in 2020 and the homes I noticed in 2017 didn’t exist, within the absence of by-laws or safety standing. My works are additionally an try at cataloguing misplaced heritage,” stated Ms. Khan, who’s pursuing her Masters on the Oxford Brookes College in Worldwide Architectural Regeneration and Improvement, informed The Hindu.
Kashmir’s Bollywood connections proved a correct mix to make folks reconnect with the previous. “It got here instinctively to me to position characters from cult films like Umrao Jaan and Pakeezah within the bazaars of the outdated metropolis. The garments they wore within the films go together with the place. These footage additionally seize the time and area of the bygone period. Folks preferred it immediately. It’s like romanticising the previous,” Ms. Khan added.
Srinagar, as soon as a hub of cinemas and movie posters, has misplaced all its 11 theatres over the past tumultuous 30 years.
For Ms. Khan, heritage homes have “faces to recollect all of the occasions to return”. “Folks take portraits of individuals and don’t overlook about them. In the identical style, every heritage home comes throughout as distinct, with distinctive options, and must be remembered. It’s additionally a journey, a technique to doc and perceive them,” she provides.
Being a metropolis planner, Ms. Khan believes placing up the atypical and mundane via a brand new perspective is the important thing to make folks reconnect with the previous. “The bazaars of the outdated metropolis proceed to be distinctive in the way in which life unfolds daily,” she added.
The heritage homes of Srinagar are a novel mixture of the influences of three civilisations (Indian, Chinese language and Persian) in addition to colonial and vernacular parts.