Chandela and Vijayanagara Art, Important temples and it’s Features
The Rajput rulers had a longing sense of beauty in art and architecture which is seen in the artistic excellence of their temples, forts and palaces. The Indo Aryan style of architecture developed in north India and upper Deccan and the Dravidian style in South India during the Rajput period. Both sculpture and architecture attained a high degree of excellence.
• The pattern and style of architecture in Chandela dynasty have a rugged simplicity and are quite distinct from the works of the later Pratiharas. Indeed, the Chandela architecture is different from their sandstone successors at Khajuraho.
• The Temple complex at Khajuraho was built by Chandela rulers between the 10th and 11th centuries in the Bundelkhand region of Madhya Pradesh. Most important among them is the Kandariya Mahadev temple.
• Chandela were creative builders in their major towns and strongholds, above all, in their capital, Khajuraho.
• With the contemporary efforts of the Solankis in Gujarat and the Somavamshis in Odisha the great series of works of the Chandela’s marked the culmination of the development of northern temples.
• Their Architectural styles are wholly unified, right up to the stage of completion. It is said that there were as many as 85 temples constructed in the city during the region of the Chandela dynasty.
The Vijayanagara style of architecture evolved in the AD 14th century and reached its culmination during times of Krishna Deva Raya and Achuta Deva Raya. The architecture reflected the power of their rulers. Under them, the temples became an elaborate institution containing a large number of structures. The Vijayanagara-era architecture can be broadly classified into religious, Courtly and Civic architecture.
• The Vijayanagara architecture is a harmonious combination of the Chalukya, Hoysala, Pandya and the Chola style which evolved from prior empires in earlier centuries. It is also influenced by the later Deccan and Dravidian styles. It uses granite as its main building material.
• Vijayanagara temples are characterized by ornate pillared halls and rayagopurams, monumental towers adorned with life-sized figure of Gods and goddesses that stand at the entrance of the temple.
• The Courtly architecture of Vijayanagara is generally made of mortar mixed with stone rubble and often shows secular styles with Islamic- influenced arches, domes and vaults.
• The Vijayanagara School of painting is renowned for its frescoes of Hindu Gods and Goddesses and scenes from Hindu mythology on temple walls and ceilings.
Vitthala Temple at Hampi
One of the most splendid of temples at Vijayanagara is the Vitthala Temple, near the Tungabhadra river and is also considered as the most ornate of the Vijayanagara Temples. The temple is dedicated to Vishnu worship.
Virupaksha Temple at Hampi
The Virupaksha or the Pampapathi temple is the main center of pilgrimage at Hampi. It is fully intact and incorporates some earlier structures. This Temple has three towers; the eastern tower rises to a hight of 160 ft and is nine tiered. It dates back to the first half of the 15th century and was renovated in the 16th century by Krishna Deva Raya.
Kulottunga Chola I of Tamil Nadu, made endowments to this temple, as evidenced from the inscription dating back to the year 1087. The Vengi Chalukyas of Andhra Pradesh renovated the original shrines in the 11th century. Much of the structure stands intact.