Saturday, June 27, 2009

Chola temple at Binnamangala

Not very far from Nelamangala the Bangalore – Tumkur highway, a drive of about a kilometer on kutcha road leads to the Mukti Nateshwar temple and regular worship is on these days.
This temple is rebuilt by the ASI, I would say they have done a reasonable job, but I would always want to see ancient ruins preserved in the conditions it is found rather than remodel and built it. To cite an example, I have Seen the Urga Narashima statues at Hampi in ruins, with the legs broken and lying in the floor. One should see this now, the legs are joined using cement plaster. I would say preservation and not restoration is what is important.

Well, expect for the Nelamangala town website, I do not find anything much about this temple other than that it was built by Raja Raja Chola. Though a local man tells his parents from the nearby village used to come to this temple to pray for rains and at times it used to rain on their journey back home.

Rich caving of the old and new on the walls.

Pillars are ancient all right

Friday, June 26, 2009

Manne_ The Capital of Gangas

With a history as old as Greece, Mesopotamia and Egypt, Most of the places one visits in India are replete with tales associated with Puranas, Mahabharata, Ramyana and also the various kings who ruled the area. While on a visit to Kaivara, It was interesting to learn that the hillock in the village was where the duel between Bhima and Bakasura took place.

So, When I had to visit Nelamangala, A quick search on the net and lo! What do I find? the ancient capital of Ganga’s of Talakad called Manne today but Manyapura in its hey days. A further research tells the Ganga shifted their capital from Talakad in last days of their reign, probably after the rise of Hoysala.

Manne is a small village today with green pastures on all the sides, very quietly the arch at the entrance welcomes you to the capital of Ganga. There are three temples we could see scattered around the village. But I am sure a little more patience and exploring the area may have many more such ruins.
Alas, there were none to tell us the names of the temple, the website of Nelamangala town lists two temple Kapileshwara and Someshwara
The temple below which I assume is Kapileshwara does not have a scantum scantorium, whether it existed at all is a question

But then, year of neglelect and growth of vegetaion may have left the original complex depleted

A Close up of the sclupture at the entrance

and beautifuly decorated windows, A careful look at the details of the carvings gives a insight to this structure

Another one of the windows

The structure below called the sule gudi (A prostitute's temple, probably built by a prostitute) is today cleverly used to store fodder, located as it is among a cluster of houses. Oldtimer recall that few decades back it used to be a big complex atleast four times the present size, and the diety present here was carried to Shivagange which is another beautiful hillock nearby.

The temple below probably Someshwara temple is situated in field, away from the road. Vegetation has completly engulfed it from all the sides and this is the only decent shot I could manage, but the intricacies at the roof and the pillar indicate this must be a beautiful structure, wish the local authorites would clear the bushes

I could not resist clearing a litte and what I see inside is this, I know this is a lousy shot

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Banashankari_Temple Town

This temple town is a short distance away from the famed Badami caves and located at Cholchigudda. The deity inside the temple, an incarnation of Parvathi is ancient and worth seeing. Apart from visiting the temple, one can eat Jowar and Bajra roti, with various chutney powder and curries sold by women wearing colorful sarees. The tower which forms the centre part of the temple complex looks straight for the caste of Hogwarts

A Big tank opposite the temple called the Harida teertha

The tower as viewed from across the temple

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Caves of Badami

A visit to Badami caves is a dream come true. Especially so, 'coz I have still retained by childhood interest in history and archeology. The sight of the huge caves thrills me to such an extent, That I could hardly compose a shot. Ideally way to explore the surroundings of the caves and the whole of Badami would be spend a full day if not two.

These caves, constructed by the Chalukyas have huge sculptures of vashinavaite, Shavite and jains. I forgot the tale behind the famous bhajan in carnatic music "Vatapi Ganapathim...". Faintly recollect that this has something to do with the Pallavas carrying a Ganapati from here when they briefly occupied Badami.

Awesome first sight of the Badami cave

Finely carved entrance

Image of Vishnu in a hall with intricately carved pillars

This one is on the Ceiling

Entrance door to the caves further on the top

Grinding stone, we used this too about 25 years back

Magnificent view of the boothnath temple from across the caves

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Shishuvinala_ revisited

I love this hamlet near Hubli, I do not really know the reason.
All I know is Sheriff, was a great poet who could transcend the boundaries of religion and has written some beautiful verse, most of it I can’t comprehend, but yet moves me to tears each time I listen to.
The tomb amidst fields, has goats grazing at all the places. This picture shot by my daughter is apt for the surroundings, reminds me of the shepherd who pursues his dream in the book Alchemist by Paul Coelho.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Modern art on the streets of Paris

Paris boast of many museum from the Louvre where one can recieve a bewitching smile from Mona Lisa or La Giaconda as called in french, to the modern arts museum called Pompidou Centre ( a unique building with exposed interconnected brightly connected pipelines exibiting modern art, sculptures and painting of Matisse etc.). But the impressive fact about Paris is the art you see on the streets. The Buildings, the Sculptures , the Graffiti, the fountains, all these are a treat to see and experience.
Here are some photographs of modern works in the City of Lights.

Stravinsky Fountain

A Sculpture at La Defence (modern suburbs of Paris)

A sculpture

Paintings on sale at Montmarte

These are from the walls near the metro

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Eiffel Tower

The Eiffel Tower easily among the four most photographed monument, the other being The Taj Mahal, The Statue of Liberty and the Big Ben, is a delight to photograph. Almost every side and every angle gives a different perceptive. Some shots...
A Street View

A close up
Growing atop a tree

The Base of the tower

Illuminated tower shot from a moving boat

Twinkling lights every hour shot from a roof of the boat