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The Indian Temple Traceries

M.A. Dhaky (Author)
Synopsis The present monograph is unique in that it, for the first time, extensively treats the subject of Indian temple jalas or grilles together with an in depth discussion in the light of relevant medieval vastrusastra passages in Sanskrit on Indian architecture. Besides identification, classification, and description of the different grille types as well as their forms, features, and their relationship with the environment as well as their functional engagement with the building of which each example is an integral part. It likewise traces the origins – or at least the earliest incidences – together with the development, wherever discernible, of the Indian grilles. While maintaining the thrust of writing towards the ancient and medieval Indian grilles, it brings within its purview the Islamic screens and the Gothic traceries for comparing and contrasting their characteristics with the earlier Indian. In the process, it also dwells on the factors of concept, form, function and, above all, aesthetics. The visual appearance of the jalas developed in each of these three architectural systems considerably varies due to environmental, creedal, cultural, and hence stylistic differences. The text of the monograph is elucidated by carefully drawn 55 lie drawings and 348 photo illustrations. Being scholarly and, as a result of academic disposition, it will not have the privilege of the company and prestige of coffee table books. It likewise cannot be a companion book for the iconographers who in India dominate the field of ancient art and pass as art historians, nor is it useful to the modernists and lovers exclusively of contemporary arts and literature. What is more, in orientation, treatment of theme, and the tenor of discussion, it adheres to the methodology of art history proper and, by the same token, not that of neo-art interpretatory, a different and new discipline which their protagonists, the Newtrendians in the West and because of them the Newtrendianoids in India, claim and proclaim as ‘New art history,’ just as they look down at the other/original one by qualifying it as conventional, traditional, old-fashioned, and outmoded. They are largely unconcerned about history and chronology, socio-religious and cultural background, and ignore style, inherent concepts, philosophy, metaphysics, and aesthetics.
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About the author

M.A. Dhaky

Professor M.A. Dhaky, currently Director (Emeritus) at the American Institute of Indian Studies (Center for Art and Archaeology), Gurgaon (Haryana), is a historian and researcher of ancient and medieval Indian art, architecture and historical archaeology as also of Sanskrit and Prakrit relate to the architecture of the ancient buildings. Prof. Dhaky had served at the AIIS’ Varanasi Center from August 1966, on deputation first from the Department of Archaeology, Government of Gujarat, and next, from 1974 onwards, from the L.D. Institute of Indology, Ahmedabad, where till 1987 he was posted as the Research Professor Indian Art and Architecture. Among his publications are the short and long monographs and papers, chapters to the volumes of the Encyclopaedia of Indian Temple Architecture, and many research articles in English, Gujarati, and in Hindi. Besides archaeological and art historical themes, he also writes on the history and chronology of ancient and medieval Jaina literature (including the agamas, their commentaries, and ancient and medieval hymns) as well as has determined the dates of the famous authors of Nirgrantha-darsana/Jainism. Moreover, he has published articles and papers involving criticism and interpretation of art, architecture, as also musicology, horticulture, and gemology. Altogether, these writings number over 310. He also has participated in several national and international seminars and delivered lectures in a few prestigious lecture series. He is recipient of several awards and honours: the ‘Kumara’ silver medal (Ahmedabad 1974), silver plaque with citation from the Archaeological Research Society, Porbandar (Porbandar 1974), an award of the Prakrta Jnanabharati, Bangalore (Bangalore 1993), the Campbell Memorial Gold Medal of the Asiatic Society of Bombay (Bombay 1994), the Hemacandracaraya Award from Jaswanta Dharmarth Trust, Delhi (Delhi 1997), and an award with gold medal from Hemacandracarya Nidhi, Ahmedabad (Ahmedabad 1999). He also got two silver plaques, each with citation (Varanasi 1996 and Delhi 1998) from the American Institute of Indian Studies.

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Bibliographic information

Title The Indian Temple Traceries
Author M.A. Dhaky
Format Hardcover
Date published: 01.01.2005
Edition 1st ed.
Publisher D K Printworld
Language: English
isbn 8124602239
length xx+490p., Figures; Plates; Glossary; Bibliography; 29cm.