From left to right: Julia, communication intern, Meret, restoration intern, Paula, restoration expert, Mitul, Indian student, Harpreet and Lea, restoration interns.
Let's meet Mitul, an Indian bachelor student in Architecture at the University School of Architecture and Planning in Delhi. Focusing mainly on the conservation of cultural heritage, she has been involved in The Shekhawati Project for the last few months.
Writing a research paper on the frescoes of Shekhawati, she decided to carry out her research specifically in Fatehpur, where her grandparents live.
When she found out about The Shekhawati Project, Mitul decided to share her knowledge, as preserving the cultural heritage of havelis matters a lot to her, too.
Thus, last week she gave us a tour of Fatehpur, and took us to several key places of cultural interest in the city.
She first took us to the Jagannath Singania Chhatri, an impressive Chhatri and private Shiva temple built in memory of the original owner's father. It is pleasantly surrounded by a garden with fountains and water channels.
Jagannath Singania Chhatri
Then we visited the Fort, located on the East side of the city. As Mitul explained, « traces of geometric and floral motifs are evidence that frescoes existed in Fatehpur before the takeover of the town by the Rajputs ».
Finally, Mitul took us to the haveli where the former owner of the Le Prince Haveli, Mr Devra, was born. In comparison to the Le Prince Haveli, this one – the Udai Ram Devra Haveli – is less magnificently decorated, but was the main inspiration for the Le Prince one which he built later on and where he lived.
Udai Ram Devra Haveli
The restoration students were very grateful to Mitul, as the visits allowed us to understand more about these monuments, as well as to compare the techniques with those used in Le Prince Haveli.