Nitin Narhar Hadap

Nitin Narhar Hadap

Survey, Documentation and study of Konkan woodwork art tradition

Head of Department, Fashion Designing Department, MNVTI, MKSSS, Pune

I undertook this project soon after submission of my doctoral thesis to the Department of Archaeology, Deccan College, Pune in 2012. This award has helped me in conducting village to village survey of the wooden temple architecture that mostly belongs to 18th to 20th century. This is observed in the Konkan region of Maharashtra. The challenge was to document the wooden structure before its further deterioration by the weather and human encroachment (In this region a new concept, rather fad is spreading speedily which is harmful to the heritage structures. This fad is locally called “Jeernoddhara”: the replacement of traditional wooden temples into the cement concrete structure in new style). I have taken this opportunity even further to create awareness among the villagers about importance of heritage buildings, history, architecture and culture .I received positive response from village authorities. Among the wooden architecture, I came across few paintings on wooden panel, probably painted by artists from Pinguli folk art tradition, wrongly referred as Paithan Painting style. Another interesting discovery or experience I would like to mention is the small votive wooden objects created by local carpenters. The range of these objects is from small wooden model of houses, Lorries, auto rickshaws to the wooden model of heart-valve and other human limbs offerings for the local deity after fulfillment of vow. These objects are true contemporary objects but the tradition and faith on vow and the deity called Mauli goes back to remote time. Another noteworthy thing I came across is a unique wooden doorframes and wooden ceiling sculptures.

I think that this award of Nehru Trust has enriched my CV and with its impact it has helping me to get new opportunity to work more on research based projects. For example, immediately after completion of NTICVAM project, I have undertaken another project about tradition of costume in western Maharashtra in colonial era. This is supported with a Fellowship of Ministry of Culture, Govt. of India.

I presented 2 articles on Konkan woodwork art tradition. One was presented at 73rd session of Indian History Congress, Mumbai University in 2012 as preliminary note and another at Annual conference of Bharat Itihas Sanshodhan Mandal, Pune. I am working on a monograph on Konkan woodwork art tradition both in English and Marathi to be published by 2015.