The Ahhichattragarh Fort and Palace Complex at Nagaur in Rajasthan is famous for its stunning complex of palaces and gardens. Under the direction of the Mehrangarh Museum Trust and His Highness Maharaja Gaj Singh II, since the 1990s it has been the subject of major conservation initiatives, including award-winning conservation of the site. In 2005, conservation of the exquisite schemes of wall painting was begun by The Courtauld Institute, and continues with the support of the Leon Levy Foundation.
All three partners aim to develop Nagaur as a centre of conservation excellence. Thus, in 2013 the Leon Levy Foundation provided generous funding to establish a well-equipped Centre for Conservation Studies that includes facilities for both teaching and conservation. In addition to laboratories for materials analysis, microscopy, and digital imaging, there is a conference and teaching hall.
An initial programme of conservation studies was offered in 2014. Generously supported by the Leon Levy Foundation, specialist courses provided knowledge and skills essential to conservation decision-making and practice. Courses were taught by experts and included both theory and hands-on practice appropriate for conservation on site, and of objects and collections. Additional support has been provided by the Aldama Foundation through their generous provision of specialist training equipment.
- ‘My experience at Nagaur has been life changing… the emphasis of thinking of conservation critically and the issues and ethics involved in conservation is also a very important lesson. I hope this program continues in the future as I think a lot of people will benefit from it … what the Leon Levy Foundation is doing is unique. ‘
- ‘I have never before felt so enthusiastic about anything in my life.’
- ‘Money can buy material but it cannot buy the knowledge which people have attained in their life. This workshop is a clear example for this.’
- ‘We all are very thankful… for conducting such a wonderful program which is, as far as I know, the first of its kind in India. ‘
The teaching programme continued in 2015 with a larger number of participants. For 2016 — from 29 February to 08 April — it will be expanded yet further. Teaching and examination is in English. Each course is examined and participants receive a certificate for courses successfully completed.
The specialist teaching is designed to introduce the principles of conservation, assessment and recording of condition, technical and multispectral imaging, assessment of materials, understanding and recording the environment and biodeterioration and its control.
Participants are drawn from South Asia, and may include both experienced conservators and those at entry-level. There is no course fee, and the Mehrangarh Museum Trust is generously providing accommodation and meals in Nagaur Fort, as well as transport to and from Jodhpur. Some financial support is available for travel costs from your home city to and from Jodhpur.
Application Deadline: 2016 application deadline has passed. Please visit website in November 2016 for 2017-18 programme.
Programme Dates: Monday 29 February — Friday 08 April 2016; with arrival from Jodhpur Sunday 28 February and departure to Jodhpur Saturday 09 April.
Language: Teaching and examination is in English
Location: Nagaur Fort, Rajasthan, RJ 341001, India