CHARACTERIZATION AND PROPOSALS FOR RECOVERY OF TRADITIONAL TAMANG CONSTRUCTION IN NORTHERN NEPAL
This article is the result of the work of four years of field trips (2016-2019) to the village of Gatlang (Nepal) and visits to some of the surrounding villages in the Rasuwa district. This area is mainly inhabited by Tamang, of Buddhist culture and of distant Mongolian origin. The architecture of the Tamang ethnic group is unique although shares some common characteristics with other mountain or isolated architectures around the world. Due to its difficult access and remote location of these communities, the architecture uses mostly local materials (stone and wood). Although this characteristic is common to many other communities of the Himalayan mountain range, even today it is possible to differentiate architectural styles associated with ethnic groups in different regions. The primitive state of these constructions is progressively altered by the inclusion of new materials, especially in areas affected by earthquakes, such as this one, where the urgency and need to guarantee the safety of new constructions has resulted in disparate and uncontrolled reconstructions. The article aims to identify and analyze Tamang vernacular architecture constructions, their invariants, and gain in-depth knowledge of their general behavior when faced with environmental factors, as well as conservation possibilities. The final objective is to promote the recovery of this architecture, guaranteeing its structural safety and adapting it to the current habitability needs, but trying to maintain the typological invariants that preserve its value as a set of historical, cultural and tourist interests, which form part of the Tamang Heritage Trail.