Immediately after the earthquake, be it Rani Pokhari in Kathmandu or Harishankar temple in Patan, it was artisans like Shilpakar from Bhaktapur who utilised their skills to build back the heritage sites in the three cities of Kathmandu Valley.
The earthquake highlighted not only the importance of Kathmandu’s heritage sites but also the artisans whose skills and knowledge made it possible for the numerous temples to stand once again. In fact, periodic earthquakes in Kathmandu have also helped preserve the ancient craftmanship of the Valley’s artisans from one generation to the next, as temples are rebuilt.
With younger generation turning away from the profession, Shilpakar worries that he may be the last in his clan to continue woodcarving. But for now, he is satisfied with the work he has done throughout the Square. He says, “I am happy with what I have accomplished, and will continue to work as long as my hands can carve.”