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The Temple Architecture of India

Adam Hardy (Author)
Synopsis Indian temples represent one of the great architectural traditions of the world. Built for Hindu, Buddhist and Jain worship, they are without parallel in the way that they combine direct sensuous appeal with a highly complex formal structure. This book explains the principles and processes underlying the designs of these monuments, providing essential historical background and placing the architecture in its cultural and religious context. It traces the origins and formation of the two classical architectural ‘languages’ of India-the northern Nagara and southern Dravida- and their extraordinarily varied development during the great age of temple construction between the 6th and 13th centuries. The book surveys the continuing vitality of these systems up to the present, and explores the lessons that can be learned from them by architects and artists today.

By giving a coherent explanation of how to look at this architecture, as a whole and in detail, the book is able to convey a lucid and comprehensive understanding of the design concepts followed be the temple architects and the developments of temple forms. The starting point of the analysis is the realisation that the principal elements of temple designs are themselves images of temples. Once this is recognised, the complex architectural compositions become clear. It can then be seen that a perennial concern of this architecture is the expression of movement. Recurrent perceptions of the cosmos and the divine in Indian religion and philosophy are shown to have close parallels in patterns of emanation and centrifugal growth embodied in architectural form. The book is lavishly illustrated with colour photographs and analytical drawings, which are integral to the ideas and arguments put forward in the text. seminars and retreats. For more than fifteen years he has followed and translated for His Holiness the Twelth Gyalwang Drukpa.
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About the author

Adam Hardy

Dr. Adam Hardy, an architect, was born in 1953, studied at Cambridge, and has since practiced and taught architecture Until recently, he was Senior Lecturer at Birmingham School of Architecture and is now Senior Tutor at the Prince of Wales's Institute of Architecture in London, where he continues to explore the relevance of traditional principles to contemporary design. His passion for Indian temples has been in full flow since his first visit to India in 1981. In the intervening period, he has written and lectured widely on the subject. This book is based on his Ph.D. research on the temple of Karnataka, completed in 1991. He is currently involved in the design of a South Indian temple complex near Birmingham.

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Bibliographic information

Title The Temple Architecture of India
Author Adam Hardy
Format Hardcover
Date published: 18.11.2010
Edition 1st ed.
Publisher Wiley
Language: English
isbn 9780470028278
length 256p., Col. Plates; Drawings; Maps; Glossary; Bibliography; Index; 29cm.