Image source: Kullu Valley
Kullu Valley, Himachal, is known for its unique vernacular knowledge - climate-resilient kathkuni architecture. The exquisite temples are some of the earliest built forms of the region. In addition to such tangible heritage, the valley is also home to vibrant intangible heritage practices. Strong oral traditions and belief systems rooted in folklore and mythology influence day to day life. Syncretic religious practices, festivals, dances and rituals reflect Buddhist influences from the North, Hindu influences from the South and Naga and animistic practices of the indigenous population, and contribute significantly to the socio-cultural expressions of the region.
The course objective is to map sacred routes, significant cultural sites, everyday living practices and community memories associated with Kullu Valley's architectural and socio-cultural heritage. To this end, we have developed a qualitative methodology which combines recording socio-cultural narratives, songs, stories and oral histories along with digital tools of photogrammetry and spatial mapping. We will build a record of the relationships between built forms, intangible heritage and its interconnected layers.