Houses of Belgao

Belgaum, Karnataka

Houses of Belgao started as a passion project for Cicada’s love for the city's heritage homes and the stories they behold. The project came into being as a reaction to the rapid transformation Belgaum was experiencing in its urban fabric. In the midst of this shift, we wanted to capture some of its places that stand still in time and greet age with a rare elegance. Like the quiet gardens of Tilakwadi, the intimate roofs in Kadolkar Galli, the secret courtyards of Shahpur, delicate balconies that overlook the busy streets of Gondhli Gali and the vast estates that embrace aloof bungalows in camp.

These houses are a directory of the aesthetic and architectural lineage that overruled the Belgaum area. Apart from the lifestyle and image that these houses represent, they incorporate a sensitivity towards architecture that is rarely seen in today’s practice and therefore offers many learnings.

Through our documentation of these houses we try to bring to the forefront the immense attention to detail and proportions, mastery in craftsmen, knowledge of regional materials, play of light and volume and a vibrant landscape which all count as an experiential treat to the senses. With methods ranging from water-colour, ink , photography, collage and digital medium we created visual art pieces that capture Belgaum’s old world charm and anecdotes from a time gone by.

The documentation alludes not only to the built, but also to verbal and cultural histories. The hope is that through Houses of Belgao we are able to retain, not just in memory but also through paper and ink, a part of Belgaum that used to be.

Mohit Yalgi
Suyash Khanolkar
Tanvi Dhond

Asmita Busgunde
Neeta Vernekar