Its been an amazing journey taking our readers through the last couple of posts, as we are treated to ring side seats to this delightful recreation of a lost pallava painting, from the Kanchi Kailasantha temple of Sri Rajasimha Pallava ( 700 CE !!), moving with the artist stage by stage.
We had started of by blocking in most of what we could salvage from the surviving pieces and started working on filling the finer details. The main hero of this panel comes up now. Shiva.
Next Umai, takes form.
Working on the divine mother a bit more. We notice that she is wearing a thin yellowish blouse or has applied turmeric on her upper torso.
The coloring starts now, with very light skin tones.
Shiva gets his color including his famous Neelakanta !
Umai matches her beloved now.
Lets see how they both pair up.
Its coming up quite well. lets add more color and fill in the details of Shiva’s Keyuras ( arm bands)
The bottom ganas and stands get colored up.
and as we approach the final stages of the composition, time for a quick stock taking. Have we missed any detail.
We forgot to correct the hands of Brahma, to be in the anjali pose.
This is where we go back to the origins of this study on Somaskanda evolution - the 1971 article of Dr Gift Siromoney.
“Of Siva’s four arms, his lower right arm is extended horizontally to the side with his hand in the position of holding something, such as a flower, though no object is actually shown. With his upper right hand he holds a snake by its tail. His lower left hand is in the ardha-dhyana mudra. His upper left hand is near his shoulder as though holding a rosary or akshamala. Siva’s left leg is down.”
This is ofcourse his reference to the early pre Rajasimha Style somaskanda sculptures. But there is no reference to the snake in the Rajasimha style Somaskanda. But his pointer made us search for the snake in more detail.
Do we see something in the lower right hand?
Do you see the raised hood of a beautiful Cobra. We incorporate it into ours.
and without further delay, with many thanks to the artist Mrs. Subhashini Balasubramanian and our young photographer jagadeesh, we have our recreation of the 8th Century lost wonder.
We hope you all enjoyed this attempt ( any mistakes are purely unintentional and we are open to comments)