Sunday 27 November 2011

Hoysala Architecture at Somanathapura.....

After a brief rest from a nagging shoulder pain (thanks to wrong posture and continuous use of computer), here I am back again to my blog. My post today is an interesting one and that which is pre-dominantly seen in parts of Karnataka, India. This is called the Hoysala Architecture.
For anybody travelling to Mysore from Bangalore or vice versa and have a flair for design, this place is highly recommended. This is a small, quiet town located approximately about 35 kilometres from Mysore and is called  Somanathapura. This town boasts of an architectural marvel. It is the famous Chennakeshava temple in Hoysalan Architecture.
The view of the temple as you enter through the smoothly textured columns which form the highlight of this architecture.
According to me, this town which is located on the banks of river cauvery goes unnoticed as it is hidden from the commercial areas.  It is now a protected monument. This temple was built by Soma (also known as Somanatha) who was a commander under the king Narasimha III.
The temple is built using a soft grey stone with tints and shades of yellow on ít. It is also called as Soapstone and is a sculptor' delight

The original deity of Chennakeshava is missing but one can  see a similiar deity as you enter. The ceiling carved out in several layers highlights the work of the skilled sculptors 

Thís symmetric structure  has a rectangular mantapa at the center and is surrounded by 3 star-shaped towers called vimana

The finely finished stone pillars adds character and form to the temple. Also notice the stone lattice (Jaali) behind the pillars which is the only source of light into the temple.

Most Hoysala temples are built on a platform called Jagati

The outer wall consists of various sculptures of gods, goddesses and members of the royal family 

The Venugopala deity

This temple houses 3 deities namely Janardhana, Venugopala and Chennakeshava

The other carvings include processions of elephants, horsemen, warriors. The paisleys and the florals follow a rhythm.

Hope you all enjoyed this and will surely plan for a week-end getaway to Somanathapura....