Bagh-e Babur, Kabul, Afghanistan
Gardens of Babur, locally known as “Bagh-e Babur”, is a historic park in Kabul, Afghanistan, and also the last resting-place of the first Mughal emperor Babur, a native of Uzbekistan. The gardens are thought to have been developed around 1528 AD (935 AH), when Babur gave orders for the construction of an ‘avenue garden’ in Kabul, described in some detail in his memoirs, the Baburnama. Having initially been buried in Agra, India, where he died, Babur’s body was moved to the grave enclosure in the garden around 1540.
But time has taken its toll on Babur’s original garden. By 2001, foreign occupation and fighting between militant groups caused them to be almost destroyed, especially under the civil war in 1992. Since the collapse of the Taliban regime in 2001, however, the gardens have been completely restored. Restoration of the site began in 2002 by the Aga Khan Foundation. Now, the gardens attract more than 300,000 visitors per year who pay 20 afghanis (25p) to enjoy the open spaces and picnic beneath shady trees.
Victoria Siemer, aka Witchoria, is a Brooklyn-based graphic designer who produces new and unusual realities by blending geometric shapes into natural landscapes, altering expected perceptions of space.
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