Development of Art in Post Mauryan Age

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The period witnessed the development of a sophisticated kind of sculpture, which came to be associated with three different regions i.e. Gandhara, Mathura and Amravati. Sculpture art was never shown in this form and this quality before. Religion played a great role in the development of this art. The subject matter and content was provided by religion. In the case of Gandhara school, the style was foreign (Hellenistic/Greek), but the subject matter and contact was indigenous. In the case of Mathura as well as Amravati, both the Subject matter and style was indigenous.

Gandhara School of Art

The influence on this art was mainly Hellenistic in context of style and Buddhist in context of religion. The main centres were Peshawar, Jalalabad, Taxila, Bamyan, Begram and Shah-ji-ki-Dheri, where we find the remains of this art form. The main patrons of this art form were the Kushanas and Shakas. Certain distinctive features of Gandhara school of art were
Realistic representation of human figures (also the hallmark of this art form) Clearly indicating limbs and other organs of body, i.e. the representation was proto-type of human body.
In realistic representation, the anatomical accuracys was emphasised.
Distinguished muscles constituted a distinctive part of the images made under this art.
The hair style was curly, which represents Greek influence.
The drapery was transparent and here we find a beautiful harmony between the drapery and physical features of human body.
One excellent example was the Bamiyan Buddha of Afghanistan.
Grey Sandstone is used in Gandhara school of art and the other materials used were mud, lime, stucco, Marble was not used.
Grey Sandstone is used in Gandhara school of art and the other materials used were mud, lime, stucco, marble was not used.

The various Mudras of Buddha in Gandhara art

All the Buddhas depicted in the Gandhara art, are shown making four types of hand gesture and this is a remarkable feature in this art. These are as follows
Abhayamudra: Don’t fear
Dhyanamudra: Meditation
Dharmachakarmudra: A preaching mudra
Bhumisparshamudra: Touching the Earth

Development of Art in Post Mauryan Age
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