This was my second visit to Shimla & each visit had different intent and different impact. The duality or dichotomy that has surface now is that WHO to conserve for and WHO to construct for. This has been the most difficult visit as witnessed the glaring reality of social life that has literally engulfed the entire topocentric urban-ism of Shimla. The left over struggle for precarious preservation of historic precinct sounds self critical as much as revealing ignorance on audacious participation in displacement of precinct from the rest of the terrain.
Shimla has seen political transformation from summer capital of pre-independence to capital of Punjab & now capital of Himachal Pradesh. Is there any way one can be slightly more analytical in understanding the impact of geo-political metamorphosis on social life?
The topcentric imagination of present living condition is beyond any precursive idea of housing & social life. It defies the any norms of conventional tools to comprehend the situation. The entire terrain is separated by means of roads that occupies the planes and that splits up the terrain that appear to be large block appear to be innocently chiseled out of monolith. The virtue of what is built and what is left is carved relaity of displaced collective. If cities are only seen as solely cultural or social agglomeration than perhaps the concern academic urban-ism is nothing more than fertile imagination for co modification of social life.
The entire terrain rises from terrain as sun penetrates the monolith deep enough to qualify as a science of self alignment/organization. The particles/housing/social life rearranges them under the influence of eternal force. As day transforms the terrain the real duality comes alive with dichotomy of re-arrange vs re-damage is apparent. The setting sun leaves epitomic traces of what the entire day displaced once what was the phenomena of self rearranging selves. The lighted houses in twilight bring strange symphonic seamlessness of convex social entity & urbanity. Isn’t that strange the city concave itself in most lighted condition of the day and convex itself in dark?. Isn’t that contradicts the very nature of ideology of architecture & urban-ism stems from?.
Shimla is necessarily destined from most organized to most un-organization conditions. The two conditions that bestows the city with dualism that fractures the very existence of contextual imperative that we talk always about. Otherwise it is not slightest exaggeration to state that any attempt that necessitates the action shall be nothing more that “ castrated bull trying to elucidate the contraceptive virtues.