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  • Field Architects

Domus International Prize for Architectural Restoration, 9th Edition 2023.

Conservation of Palay House and Cultural regeneration & adaptive re-use of old Phey in Ladakh has been awarded Silver Medal at Domus International Prize for Architectural Restoration 9th Edition 2023 by Department of Architecture, University of Ferrara, Italy JURY REPORT

The intervention on the Palay House in the old village of Phey, in the mountain region of Ladakh, India, is an exemplary case of conservation applied to a vernacular clustered architecture. Of particular relevance, from a cultural point of view, is the attention paid on the one hand to the materiality of the building and its construction techniques, and on the other to the immateriality of the traditional skills involved in their conservation. The greatest changes, also from a figurative point of view, were concentrated on the north side, where the degradation of the adobe was heaviest. In replacing the upper stratigraphy of the floors and the layer of earthen plaster, traditional techniques were adopted, but with a peculiar attention to the concept of distinguishability and to the recovery of demolition materials. This intervention stands as a model, also applicable in other buildings in the context, of how sustainable restoration can be carried out, improving the quality of life of the inhabitants of rural houses, with substantial respect for material and historical- testimonial values.


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