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Hinduism Dravidian (South) and Nagara (North) Styles Hinduism Polytheistic religion (worship many gods and goddesses) Goal is to achieve moksa --by praying, worshipping (darsana) and giving offering to gods

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Dravidian (South) and Nagara (North) Styles

  • Polytheistic religion (worship many gods and goddesses)
  • Goal is to achieve moksa--by praying, worshipping (darsana) and giving offering to gods
  • Each god has a female companion and rides on vehicle such as bull (Nandi), lion, goose; each holds some attributes (Siva: tridents and Vishnu: conch shell and wheel)
  • Brahma-God of Creator
  • Vishnu-God of Preserver (has many incarnations such as Rama and Krishna)
  • Shiva-God of Destroyer (also the protector of animals)
  • Devi-goddess (e.g., Laksmi (“Good Fortune”) and Parvati); symbolizing beauty, benevolent, and wealth as well as power and wrath
vastu purusa mandala
Vastu-purusa mandala
  • A myth explains the symbolic diagram (mandala): the gods in seeking to impose order on chaos, forced the primeval man, Purusa, into a square grid, the vastu-purusa mandala, whose basic unit is the square pada
  • Hindu temple is the dwelling of the gods. It is based on the grid systems of 64 (8x8) and 81 (9x9) squares.
  • Square is the prefect shape for the ground plan.
  • Priests perform ritual of consecrations which connect between sexual rites and fertility in Hindu architecture.
hindu temples
Hindu temples
  • The temple is a holy site (tirtha), where they practitioners can perform circumambulation (pradaksina). They also perform the pious act of gazing at the deity (darsan) and offering prayers, flowers and food (puja). The temple is never a meeting place for a congregation, but it came to be a focal point of the community.
  • The heart of the temple is the dark hall called garbha grha (womb hall), where the most important icon is placed. It is the most important area.
  • Pillared halls (mandapa) and porticos were added to the garbha grha, which was surmounted with a tower (sikhara)--center of the universe (axis mundi).
media and ornaments
Media and ornaments
  • Many varieties: wood, brick, terracotta, and variety of stone (e.g., schist, chlorite, marble)
  • Temples required to be heavily ornamented (things lacking in ornament were considered imperfect or incomplete.
  • Motifs: narrative reliefs, animal motifs, floral and vegetation motifs.
dravidian architecture
Dravidian architecture
  • Stone used as medium for funerary monuments
  • Religion developments, particularly bhakti cult, played an important role
  • Early phases of architecture consisted of rock-cut monuments
  • Later phase is dominated by structural buildings; Gopuras became larger than the main building
  • The emphasis is on horizontality lines; one or more stories, topped with stepped-pyramidal shikhara and a mushroom cap
  • Large remains of Pallava period, 7th century
  • Most of the monuments are rock-cut, carved out of the boulders and cliffs in the area.
  • Descent of Ganges River or Arjuna Penance
  • Rathas
  • Kailasanatha temple (Ellora 16)
the descent of ganges
The Descent of Ganges
  • Mid-7th century, Mamalla I at Mamallapuram
  • 30 meters in length; 50 meters in height
  • Contains animals and other objects
  • Approximately life-size scale
  • Sculptures were done in realistic manner

3.20 The Descent of the Ganges (or the Penence of Arjuna)

Mamallapuram. Pallava period, 7th century


3.20 The Descent of the Ganges (or the Penence of Arjuna)

Mamallapuram. Pallava period, 7th century

rathas mamallapuram
Rathas, Mamallapuram
  • Mid 7th C, Mamalla I period
  • Consists of five free-standing rock-cut structures: Draupadi (dedicated to Durga), Arjuna, Bhima (to Vishnu), Dharmaraja, and Nakula-Sahadeva; three free-standing animals: lions, bull, and elephant
buddhist art
Buddhist Art
  • Read Fisher, Buddhist Art and Architecture, chapter: pp. 11-64.
  • Important figures: 16, 17, 18, 21, 22, 32, 33, 37, 38, 40, 42, 43, 44
kailasanatha temple ellora 16
Kailasanatha temple, Ellora 16
  • World Heritage site
  • Built during the reign of King Krisna I of the Ratchatrakuta Dynasty, 757-773
  • **Free standing rock-cut architecture**
  • Main building: exterior richly carved with niches, high reliefs, windows as well as images of deities, mithunas and the other figures; main subjects are Saivite
  • Nandi Shrine: solid
  • Built in rectangular format
rajareshvara temple great temple at thanjuvar tanjore
Rajareshvara Temple (Great Temple) at Thanjuvar (Tanjore)
  • Chola period (9th-13th centuries)
  • Centered at Thanjuvar (Tanjore)
  • Rajarajeshvara or Brihadevara temple to Shiva at Thanjavur (Tanjore), c. 1000 CE
  • Temples made of bricks and stone (for base)
  • Rectangular enclosure
  • Large gateways (Gopuras)
  • Niches: 30 representations of Siva in his Tripuramtaka (Destroyer of three Cities)
minakshi temple at madurai
Minakshi Temple at Madurai
  • Nayak period (16th-18th centuries)
  • Dual shrines dedicated to Siva (known locally as Sundaresvara, “Handsome One,” and Minakshi “Fish-Eyed One”
  • Hall of thousand pillars
  • Gopuras (gate): S was built by a wealthy landowner (197 feet) is covered with over 1500 plaster figures of gods and demons
  • Refers to art in the regions of Bengal, Orissa, NE, and NC, Delhi and Gujarat region.
  • Used stone such as Chlorite, sandstone and white marble
  • Temple emphasis is primarily on vertically; horizontality is suppressed.
  • High base emphasis the vertically of the whole
  • The porch and congregational halls are called mandapa, which in the S style was clearly separated with the tower over the shrine.
  • Sikhara is the tallest structure, symbolizing the center of the universe; often rose around 24-30 meters (79-98 ft) some reached over 60 m (196 ft).Amalaka is a capstone.
  • Amalaka-the finial in a shape of a turban
  • Torana-Gate
  • There are 2 main type-sited in the N style: Khajuraho and Bhuvanesvara