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 JAIN TEMPLES OF RAJASTHAN

SEHDEV KUMAR

 

2001, xiv+207pp., line ills., col. and b&w ills., gloss., indexes, ISBN: 81-7017-348-5, Rs. 2500 (HB) 


 


The Jain temples at Dilwāṛā in Mount Ābu evoke a sense of awe for their sculptural artistry. Unnamed artists who had, for years, created exquisite pieces in ivory, now worked with marble, sculpting ceiling and domes, columns and walls, creating works of unparalleled beauty. They carried forward, and deepened, a rich tradition of temple building in India, with their plethora of images from Indian myths and legends. The most outstanding feature of these temples are the thousand-petalled lotuses that decorate the domes in the raṅgamaṇḍapas, signifying a very highly evolved technical and artistic achievement.

Some 200 km away from the Mount Ābu, in Ranakpur, the Ādīśvara Temple is an achievement of a different kind. It is renowned for its architectural splendour; a thousand columns that define its wondrous spaces are all unique, as no two are alike.

Using these temples as nodal points for a photographic and a reflective study, Prof. Sehdev Kumar explores the artistic nuances of these temples in the context of the rich tradition of temple architecture and iconography in India.

 


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