ITUMBAHAFEBRUARY 2002 - NOVEMBER 2005
THE GOVERNMENT OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF GERMANY
WORLD MONUMENTS FUND
SANGHA OF ITUMBAHA
ORIENTAL CULTURAL HERITAGE SITES PROTECTION ALLIANCE
Itumbaha, one of the five principal monasteries of Kathmandu, is regarded for its ritual importance in Newar Buddhism, its wealth of early woodcarvings, and its architectural configuration which dates to the 13th century. Itumbaha preserves its square ground plan and roof form as well as numerous carved elements such as windows, columns, and struts. The courtyard contains additional votive structures, some of great artistic importance such as the 17th-century chaturmukhi chaitya (“four-faced stupa”). In 2001, Itumbaha was included in the World Monument Watch, a list of the world’s most threatened monuments.
The monastery is located in the heart of Kathmandu in a rapidly developing area north of Darbar Square. Between 2002 – 2005, KVPT restored the south and west wings of Itumbaha as part of its Buddhist Kathmandu Campaign. From 2005 – 2006, Itumbaha’s religious trust (sangha) restored the north wing. In 2014, KVPT will begin work to restore the remaining east wing. This restoration effort will include the rebuilding of all dilapidated masonry walls, reconstruction of the roof using traditional tiles, and conservation of carved timber elements, employing seismic strengthening methods.