Publicado el 12/08/2010

Todos Santos complex award by World Monuments Fund and U.S. Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation

Todos Santos complex is located in the heart of Cuenca, Ecuador, deep within the Tomebamba River Valley.

Cuenca’s Inca and colonial heritage are intertwined with a modern city. It is easy to understand the desirability and early prosperity of this Andean settlement because of the convergence of four rivers and abundant natural resources in the basin formed by mountains around the city. The white façade of the Todos Santos church was created in the manner of Spanish colonial Gothic Revival, but was built with the traditional materials of adobe and bahareque, a pre-Inca construction technique mixing sugar cane, straw, local plants, and clay.

The historic center of Cuenca was inscribed on the World Heritage list in 1999, confirming the importance of the ensemble of historic buildings, streetscapes, and cultural patrimony that have endured. In 2005, aging electrical installations caused a fire that resulted in the death of one of the convent’s nuns, and also critically damaged the infrastructure of Todos Santos. Natural aging has also left areas of the complex in states of deterioration, while others have simply been abandoned. Preservation of Todos Santos poses challenges that can only be met through broad community participation and innovation.

UPDATES

— World Monuments Fund awarded $150,000 in Wilson Challenge funding to complete the restoration of the church. The funds are being matched by the Municipality of Cuenca. July 2010.
— The U.S. Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation allocated a 2010 award to support the restoration of an historic conventional bakery in the Todos Santos area of Cuenca. August 2010.

More informations at WMF website

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