10 May 2007 / 20 Saur 1386
Our fourth field trip was to Ashiqan wa Arifan, one of the oldest existing neighborhoods in Kabul. I took the class there on our fourth field trip, to see conservation, restoration, and the role of historic urban fabric for urban identity.
|Entry street in to Ashiqan wa Arifan neighborhood|
|Reconstruction raising dust|
|Older, timber-laced construction||Entry to mosque. Note the post inside.|
|Aga Khan Trust for Culture (AKTC) has restored this house.||Most of the facade is carved cedar (archeh).|
|The upstairs has a central room divided from end-rooms by screens.||Rather than closets, niches are built into the walls.|
|Courtyard of the mosque of the Uzbeks (masjid-e Uzbekha).||Poplar (chenar) is used for most posts and beams.|
|The caretaker of the mosque.||The enclosing windows are a 20th-century addition.|
|Engineer Habib describing AKTC’s restoration-decisions here.||The mihrab of the mosque has a clock rather like Saint Gregory’s.|
|The minbar, on the right, is built into the wall. People who often come to pray leave their prayer rugs in the mosque.||Mud-plaster finish has been restored on the right; but painted wood has been left as is.|
|A repaired street, outside another restored house.
The students discuss materials and choices made.
|The combination of wood and plaster is
reminiscent of historic Japanese houses.
|Mud-plaster detail work is often quite delicate.||Muhammad Nazir was born in this neighborhood.|
|Nawin discusses restoration with the carpenter.||Nawin likes this house.|
|This restored street reminds me of Fes.||You can build out over the street if your neighbor
agrees to it; but you must build the supports.
|Drains run down the middle of the street.
These covers allow easy clean-out.
|The beams and braced frames of overhanging floors create wonderful forms and shadows.|