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Posts Tagged ‘Buddha’

In our continuing pursuit to bring to light the extent of the rot - today we move away from Hindu dieties and metal - to stone and Buddha - not any Buddha but a Buddha from Nagapattinam 11th Century. This was a dynamic period in the Chola rule when the mighty Emperor Sri Raja Raja ruled much of South India. His extensive donations to the Soodamani Vihara in Nagapattinam is studied to this day and to spot one such piece in the September 2010 Catalogue of now arrested Subash Kapoor’s Art of Past is the subject of our post today.

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What is interesting is there is this particular article in the Hindu with the image dated Nov 11th 2012, which seem to bear a remarkable likeness to the catalog sculpture.

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The foot note makes it even more interesting: ” The Buddhist statue marked for theft by alleged Kapoor associate, Sanjivi Asokan, but not stolen owing to police action.”

and the report goes ” One Buddhist idol was said to have been marked for theft by Kapoor’s alleged head of operations in Tamil Nadu, the now-imprisoned Sanjivi Asokan. However, that idol was ultimately not stolen, quite likely due to timely action by authorities. “

The image in the publication is not very clear but there is a very important clue in the Buddha’s hand - his right thumb is broken.

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A careful study of the catalog reveals the same breakage in it as well.

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Now obviously something is amiss. The Catalog listing also boasts that the said sculpture was exhibited in the Asian Civilisations Museum, Singapore ” On the Nalanda Trial “ from 1st Nov 2007 to 23rd March 2008. It was a prestigious exhibition which was seen even by the Prime Minister of India Dr Manmohan Singh.

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The Press release of the ACM for the event has this said sculpture with a detailed foot note as well

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“…viewed stunning Buddhist art, including this 11th Century stone sculpture from South India, weighing over 700 kg.”

Now, what timely action are we talking off. The photo in the Hindu seems to be of the Buddha in situ in a site in India ( large temple wall abutting it??) -

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Today, we are going to see some unconnected icons. But before that, a long pending paintings inspired by sculpture - aka temple. Not any temple but The Kailasantha Temple in Kanchipuram.

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Rendered by Mr B. Sathish !

There are some icons ( and people) who have a magical allure to them and we could Photogenic but not sure if it applies to architecture, but the creations of Rajasimha - be it the Shore temple, the Panamalai Thaalagireershwarar or the Kanchi Kailasantha, they turn even amateur photographers raving mad. So imagine the plight of experts. Take a look at this work of Aadhi arts.

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Really stunning are they not?

Now take a look at these.

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Seemingly disconnected icons - The famous Bodhisattva mural from Ajanta, a slice of the penance panel from Mallai and the somaskanda painting from Kanchi Kailasanthar.

For regular followers, you have already seen the traces of the pallava artist’s fantastic creation in the
Recreating a lost treasure

Let me first explain the location of these amazing paintings.

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You have to twist a bit to enter between the pillars and peep into to your left. If you are lucky you will get to see the four places where the Somaskanda paintings are still visible. Sadly, the rest of the spaces are used as storage for…

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But this one is special. Peep inside the tavern while turning your head to the right.

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What looks like a portion of black and maroon, is actually a portion of the original Pallava painting that would have adorned the whole side wall.

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We step in closer to view the fantastic Kinnara couple. Notice the lovely lady playing a reed flute, the clawed feet and the style of the wings.

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Now lets take a look at the Mallai Penance Panel

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do you notice the similarity between the two couples - the clawed feet and the wings?

Now, both the locations we saw are from the Pallava school. But if i were to tell you that a similar creature is there in Ajanta as well, and that you have seen it so many times without registering it, would you believe me?

Yes, here we go

( photo & line drawing credits - An Album of Eighty-five Reproductions in Colour, Editor: A.Ghosh; Published by Archaeological Survey of India)

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Found them ?

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Truly art knew and knows no borders nor boundaries.

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