Overview for Exploring the Sacred Art of Andhra
The significant contribution of the Vaishnava temple at Korukonda and the Siva temple at Bendi to the religious art of the country is hardly noticed. These temples situated in small villages, withstood the ravages of nature, time and human vandalism and preserve the sculptural art and architecture. The present work focuses on the iconological and interpretative study of the images and their contextual significance. The book offers a closer view of the relief sculptures of the temple at Korukonda as the themes are based on the epic Ramayana. The different episodes of the Ramayana story depicted on the walls of the temple highlighting the heroism of Rama are intended to impress upon the minds of the devotees, the nature and character of an 'ideal hero'. It concentrates on the narrative scenes portrayed on the koshthas of the Nandisvara temple at Bendi, which display the construction of new and variant myths as in the case of Siva over powering the demon Gajasura, observance of cultic practices like the Linga puja by the followers of Pasupata Saivism etc. It focuses on the iconic schemes of the well-known Kadhukevara temple at mukhalingam and attempts to reinterpret the enigmatic images within a well integrated scheme, by bringing comparisons with the images of similar iconographical features noticed elsewhere. In this process, several earlier non-specified images could be seen in their proper context and for the first time identified and interpreted. The study of certain rare type of images like Tripadamurti, Ekapada-Trimurti and Svabhishe-kamurti noticed on the temples of Andhra is another special feature of the book. Analysis of the images of Lakulisa and the development of the Pasupata cult in Andhra based on the stone and copper plate inscriptions are some such new interpretations offered in the Book. The Book is intended to serve as a source book for the future researchers working in the field of iconography, religion and art history of Andhra region. An exhaustive bibliography and a large number of line drawings and photographs add to the value of this Book.