Recreating a lost treasure – Somaskanda Paintings of Kanchi Kailasanatha – Part 1

The lure of the recreating the lost treasures of Rajasimha’s famed paintings has been on my drawing board for long. Having experienced the sheer ecstasy of seeing the fragments of brilliance that are still remaining, my heart wept with a strange mixture of joy and sorrow. Joy at knowing that the pinnacle of artistic talent that my land had 1300 years ago, that he could still take my breath away – albeit only in traces, the grace of his lines, the versatility of his palette, the excellence of form , stumped me. Sorrow at the realisation, that having survived for so long, the day that these would not be there anymore to inspire and impress a future generation, was not far away.

Modern photography techniques and the net, could help me to a certain extent, to at least capture these for posterity, but then there was always a niggle, a silent wish to be able to see these beauties in their original finery. My imagination helped in painting them in my mind, but to be able to transfer this onto the physical plane, needed greater acumen. My early attempts are tracing them, using manual tracing paper and online trace software, proved that this was not a task for technologically empowered, but for someone who had it in the genes.

Call it luck and chance, or maybe an inner desire of these beauties to be recast and re adored – a causal visit to a Art exhibition, of friends from Facebook, led to an introduction to none other than the clan of Sri Maniam. yes, the master who illustrated Kalki’s immortal works,Immortal works , whose Son Sri Maniam Selvan has continued in his tradition, – his works ,but it was not he, but the granddaughters of the great man. The fertile minds of the master has indeed spawned a second generation of divine artists ! So, i did get to meet Mrs. Subhashini Balasubramanian . We talked about Kalki, his works and obviously about art. Being the greedy guy that I am, I immediately sought her help on the long standing wish, and she readily agreed. We decided to start with the Somaskanda Panels of Kanchi Kailasanthar temple.

The task was not easy, but we didn’t know that fate and destiny had in store for us. The paintings are in really bad state and we had to form a collage of about 4 different works, to compare and pick out missing details. Unfortunately, despite my claims of having a large database, i could not get decent quality / resolution of these paintings. A frenetic search with friends and well wishers didn’t yield the desired results either.

We had to work with what we had in hand, putting together the bits and pieces. Just as i was loosing heart,I got the first cut from Subhasini…

I was clean bowled by the clarity in the work and the inherent beauty in the form. Clearly, the genes have gotten to work and I knew that my objective was not a distant dream but a definite reality. We were working for a week on the details, but the problem of obtaining high resolution photos for closer study loomed large. Just then, a mail arrives from a school boy. He had chatted with me sometime in May through sculpture chat on the site, …he was from vellore and was waiting for his ICSE X std results. The mail reads

“You are invited to view prithviraj’s photo album: kanc
Hello anna! Do you remember me? Am Rajakesari. I would like to share some photographs i took in Kanchipuram with u. I would be happy if these photos will be useful to you.”

And inside we see the exact photos which we wanted, the exact angles and he sent me the high resolution images as well. What a coincidence !! I can see you asking me, why all this about high resolution images, well you will understand as we see the recreation process.

Here is our Hero, Jagadesh, studying 11th Std now in Vellore.

The art of the Pallavas, so superbly nurtured by Rajasimha Pallava, finds release through the lens of a 11std Boy today and feeds our aspirations to recreate them.

Brahma

Umai

Vishnu

The need for high resolution images, comes to the fore as we explore the numerous highlights and new motiffs and features come to the fore. This Gana and lady attendant are spotted.

We try and experiment with Lion motifs for the legs of the throne – like the ones we saw in the Mallai Mahishasuramardhini Mandabam

To come up with the next versions of the sketch.

Its shaping up quite well, but you have to wait for the next part of this post to see more !!

Kirata Arjunam – Art meets art spanning 1300 years

How do we reach out to the next generation and imbibe in them the values of our land, of its art, of art appreciation. These are questions which keep coming up during our discussions. Visual art is definitely something that is attracting the next generation and though we may scoff at the comics and gaming culture, its there to stay. So today we are going to marry a Kanchi Kailasanatha sculpture ( one of my personal favorites) with the latest in digital illustrative art.

The story itself is an interesting anecdote from the Vana Parva of the Mahabaratha, wherein Arjuna splits from his brothers to do penance and procure the Pasupatha Astra from Shiva. Being the benevolent but mischievous God that he is, Shiva decides to test his devotee’s prowess himself before bestowing the boon. So he takes the form of Kirata ( a hunter) with his accompaniment of a Bow and quiver full of arrows, accompanied by Uma as the Kirata woman, enters the same forest in which Arjuna is doing his penance. Just at that moment, Arjuna is attacked by a fearsome Demon Mukasura, who has taken the form of a Wild boar. Seeing the wild boar rushing at him, the accomplished marksmen that he is, Partha ( Arjuna) lets fly a deadly arrow from his Bow Gaandiva, going for the Boar’s head. At the same instant Kirata also lets fly an arrow, which find its target in the rear of the Boar. Both the arrows hit the target at the same instant !! Now, this led to a quarrel among the two, with Arjuna claiming the hunt as his and accusing the hunter for shooting from the rear. The hunter explains that this was not a duel to have the rules of engagement drawn and to attack an animal from behind thus is no wrong ! ( Rama felling Vaali ?)

The argument continues and soon escalates into a tussle. Being warriors both settle on a duel to find out the better among them. A Shell shocked Arjuna soon sees his prowess with the Bow is matched if not bettered by the lowly hunter. His Bow string is deftly cut by the hunter’s arrow and he jumps into to engage in a wrestling match, in which too he is matched. To his surprise, the hunter doesn’t even seem to break a sweat, while he is almost dead with exhaustion. The popular version, says that he stops to create a small Linga and offers prayers with flowers to it, to invoke his blessing and taken on his opponent once again, when he is surprised to find the flowers which he offered the Linga are now adorning the hunter. Realising the true identity of his opponent, he falls at his feet and surrenders to his grace. Rest is history. There is another version that during the wrestling brawl, Arjuna accidentally caught Kirata’s feet and since he bestows grace on whoever touched his feet, Shiva immediately stopped fighting etc. But this is the crux of the Kirata Arjunam story.

Now, thanks to Mr. Abhilash Narayanan, Creative designer & Animation director, who is sharing some of his works with us, we see the story brought to life in the technology of today.

you can see more of his works at his site below

Abhiram’s site

Now, we transport ourselves back in time to the Kanchi Kailasantha temple. This panel must have been featured long ago, as its one of my favorite panels. The dynamism and sheer energy captured in this typical Hollywood style ` Face Off ‘ posture is an arresting sight. Maybe it was waiting to be pitted head to head against the best of digital art.

Photos : courtesy Mr Arvind and Mr Swaminathan.

We have the two warriors, standing their ground, locking gazes, as they are caught in the act of drawing their bows. Its interesting to notice how they seem to have slung two quivers on their backs, interesting only one has a waist sword. That this panel depicts the Kirata Arjunam is seen distinctly by the Boar in the background exquisitely sculpted behind the two figures despite the maze of their legs.

Now, comes the difficult question. Who among the two is the Lord Shiva as Kirata the Hunter and who is Arjuna. Lets take a closer look at the two figures.

and focus on the ornamentation and head dress in particular.

Lets list down the major differences between the two fighters.

Clearly, the figure to the left of the panel ( right as you view it) – wears a tall crown and a Yagnopavitham, while the other has his hair tied in a kind of bun, wears the Channavira ( cross belts) and carries a waist sword whose hilt is clearly seen.

The oral tradition is that Arjuna must have gone as an ascetic, must be emaciated from the severe penance ( he is said to have subsisted on air alone in the final months of his penance ) and there is also a ref to him wearing a sword with a golden hilt

Ref in Mahabratha

“At Yudhishthira’s command, Dhananjaya of immeasurable prowess set out (from Kamyaka) to obtain a sight of Sakra, the chief of the celestials and of Sankara, the god of gods. And the strong-armed Arjuna of great might set out armed with his celestial bow and a sword with golden hilt, for the success of the object he had in view, northwards, towards the summit of the Himavat.

But then, when we come to Kirata, he is clearly is portrayed as a hunter and not as a resplendent King, and Shiva is hardly ever shown with a Krita makuda. Further there is this reference in Sri R. Nagasamy’s article.

Kirata or Tripurantaka


However in many Chola sculptures and also Bronzes (Melapperumpallam image) Kirata will be shown like a hunter with round bellied body , beard and cannavira. His hair would be tied as a bun-like knot and not the jata-makuta one sees in the Tripurari form.

But again the Book reference is a bit unclear. When Arjuna exhausts the twin inexhaustible quivers gifted to him by Agni ( burning of the Kandava forest episode
Fire in the Khadava forest ) he tried to use his Bow as a spear , but is thwarted by Shiva.

Ref in Mahabaratha

And beholding his bow snatched from him, Arjuna took up his sword, and wishing to end the conflict, rushed at his foe. And then the Kuru prince, with the whole might of his arms, struck that sharp weapon upon the head of the Kirata, a weapon that was incapable of being resisted even by solid rocks. But that first of swords, at touch of the Kirata’s crown, broke into pieces

So, we are left with an Iconographic puzzle. Whats your take on this?

I would go with Arjuna with the crown and Kirata with the Bun head dress.

Controversial sculpture series – Part 1 -He gifts the discus to Vishnu

Gods vs God – Our God against your God – is always controversial and generally you would prefer to step clear of these, inorder not to hurt the sentiments of both sides. But at times we need to dwell on these to understand that whatever physical manifestations we see are but mere rungs of a ladder that are meant to take us to a higher plane and not to defend imaginary territories by laying anchor on these. So, as part of the site’s initiative to bring out purely the story behind sculpture, there are a few such which we cannot ignore – be it the more common Lingothbhavar, to the exotic Sarabeshwarar, to the Ganga’s origins on the other side. Having said that, these have been around for a 1000 years and form part of the religious framework and hence its our duty to look at them objectively. With that as a forward and a warning to increase your patience ( you may please leave now if you may wish !!) am going ahead with the first of this controversial sculpture series. Vishnu Anugraha Murthy and Chakra Dharanar. One is from the Madurai temple – could have been rebuilt post Malik Kafur’s assault – by the Nayak’s but the other is from 8th C CE – Rajasimha Pallava – kailasanathar temple Kanchipuram.

To make sure that this legend is not a figment of my imagination nor am i forced to concoct such a conspiracy theory am taking refuge in the Thevaram hymns of Appar at the outset.

Sixth Thirumurai

O Holy One whose crest is flower-laden,praise be!
O Ens hailed by the gods,praise be!
O Lord of gods,Praise be!
O Giver of the Disc to Tirumaal,praise be!
O One that saved me from Death and rules me,praise be!
O the Adept who is bedaubed with the ash that is white Like conch,praise be!
O the One whose victorious flag Displays the Bull,praise be,praise be!
O Tirumoolattaana,praise be,praise be!

Translation: T. N. Ramachandran,Thanjaavoor ,1995

Now that the ground work has been done and have ensured i have built all my defenses, proceeding with the story – well, there are many versions of it ( as usual).

Part 1:

To be brief – A wicked demon Jalandran gets a boon – who else but from Brahma. Shiva needs to slay him but since his wife is a devotee of his wants to use a proxy. Vishnu meantime needs a powerful weapon and does penance on Shiva ( hang on – dont crucify me just now – there is more to come) with 1000 lotus flowers. As luck could have it, he finds he is short by one – he being the lotus eyed one ( kamalakkannan) himself, he wastes no time in plucking his eye and offering to complete the 1000. ( now – don’t reach out for your daggers yet ! let me put across the exhibits as well)

The sculpture from Rajasimha Pallavas Kanchipuram Kailasanthar Temple:

Well, well – what do we have here now. The classic free wheeling style of the Pallava sculptor comes to the fore here. You can see the relaxed seated style of Siva, Stylistically folding one leg up, while he seems to leaning on his right hand for extra comfort. The Back two hands seem to be in the process of tying up his headdress or something of that sort. Vishnu on his part, kneeling on one knee – both his lower left and right hands seem to be in the act of offering something to Siva ( lotus flowers??) – the most interesting thing to note is the upper left hand – seems to be in act of plucking his left eye – a la Kannappar !!

I for one expected a more balanced portrayal of the chief characters, but then that is maybe the core devotion that is the basis of this panel. You must be prepared to forgo your ego and submit totally to him to realise God.

But the next part, have to renew my life insurance at a hefty premium after seeing this in Madurai.

Part 2:

Pleased with Vishnu’s devotion, Shiva conjures up ( some versions say he drew a circle on the ground and cut out a discus form and proceeded to cut the demon into two himself and later presented it to Vishnu, some others say there were some more deceit involving the wife of the demon – am stepping away from these – not wanting to create more controversies- am sure you would google these up) – crux is Shiva gifts the Discus to Vishnu.

We swing across to the Madurai Meenakshi Amman temple to view this sculpture.

That it is Vishnu and Shiva – with Brahma watching reverently by the side is clear from the relative attributes held. You can see that the cannons have become more rigid and the sculptor has merely sculpted to definition following set rules – leading to a duller or rather less artistic output.

It is a pillar sculpture but I do wish the sculptor be bit more balanced in depicting his subjects – especially the relative sizes and the problem is compounded by the size of Vishnu and he having to match the size of the discus to that of Vishnu. It would have been more pleasing both aesthetically and politically to have sculpted …. hmm, let me stop with that.

Kanchi Mathangeshwara Temple + Somaskanda Evolution Part 5

Today we are being treated to an excellent travelogue by Arvind – on a little known attraction in the well visited Kanchipuram environs. Arvind is a Software professional with a fanatic interest in sculpture 🙂 and is currently working on bringing out an online catalogue of sculpture. He is a enthusiastic and voracious reader on sculpture apart from many other interesting passions…Read on…

Visiting Kancheepuram was a long pending item on my to do list. Though I made few visits in my school and college days, I had not visited this treasure trove for long.

The interest to visit was rekindled during my conversations with a good friend. Finally last week, made an impulsive decision to visit the place. I also gave myself the whole weekend to visit as many places as I could.
My good friend Gopinatha Srinivas readily accepted to join me for the trip.

As we were temple hopping, drunk in the beauty of the sculptures, battling the heat, we could cover Kailasandhar Kovil, Katchepawarar Kovil, Kamatchi Amman kovil and Ulagalantha Perumal Kovil on Saturday. We called it day then.

Next morning we wanted to cover as many as possible by the time the temples closed in the afternoon. We started with Ekkamabareswarar Kovil and moved on to Vaikunda Perumal Kovil. Ekkambareswarar Kovil, though huge did not have as many interesting sculptures proportionate to its size. While Vaikunda Perumal koil, was a riot. Every panel there is exquisite and was forcing us stay put.

Interestingly there are panels with Huang-San, replica of Mahabalipuram shore temple (in the Nandivarma Pallavamalla’s ascend to the throne). The panels on the praharas were filled with various coronations of the Pallava Kings. The priest there was kind enough to tell us the other temples we need to visit in the vicinity.

Mathengesawar Temple is just 200 meters away from Vaikundaperumal Koil. This should be the most well hidden temple I had come across.


The directions given to us was to take the 2nd right from where we had parked at Vaikunda perumal koil, the second right was a small lane, as we entered it, we could see a gopuram and our eagerness soared, but there was no approach from the lane we had taken. We reversed and went the next right, which happens to be a main road. As we moved along the road looking for the temple, it never came to our sight. We parked our car and started to walk back to check again, if we had missed the temple.

As we retraced our route, we caught the little ASI board and an adjacent narrow lane, which was the entrance to the temple. This lane is about 30 feet, leading to open clear space. The whole temple complex should be less than 4000 sq.ft. There is single shrine which is well elevated from the ground level. There is a nandhi opposite to the shrine and a banyan tree adjacent to it. From the looks of it the Banyan tree attracts more visitors than the temple.


10 steps lead to the corridor of the shrine, which are quiet steep.


Central shrine houses the linga with a backdrop of Somaskanda panel, which is exquisite. Which styling is this?

The three walls of the the shrine on the outer has some brilliant sculptures, the sandstone had lent itself for some intricate carvings.

Small and very beautiful temple, the sculptures here stays in my eyes now, and hope it would for ever. If not, I can go back to these photographs or back to Kancheepuram to see the beauty again.

Wait for part 2 – for more beauties from here and more history about it….

Later Pallava Doorguardians – Mathangeshwara Kanchi

To continue the thread on the Door guardians – we proceed today to a very innocuous looking temple lost midst all the developments in Kanchi. Arvind had a tough time spotting this temple and many thanks again for his untiring efforts to get us these images from the shrine – The Mathangeshwara Temple ( will feature its twin the Mukteshwara shortly as well).

The dating of this temple is not clear and we will discuss that more once we see Mukteshwara as well, however, stylistically it placed between CE 700 – 800 – in the reign of Nandhivaraman II Pallavamalla. A king with a very interesting ascension, rule n exile – who inspired the Nandhikalambagam to be sung in his praise.

Without diverting from our focus, lets step inside.

The lion pillars are obstructing our view of the door guardians.

how do they compare with the early Pallava door guardians – Mahendra style? They do look a lot more terrifying – the earlier ones had a mocking look on them. See for yourself.

Mandagapattu

Seeyamangalam

Dhalavanur

We need to study Mathangeshwara more closely.

Left door guardian

The Horns seem a bit more horn and less prongs of a trident ( can’t spot the centre spoke !)

Right door guardian

Is this a variation of the Axe blade – earlier it was vertical and here it seems a horizontal blade !

The most important variation however is the additional two hands – both the door guardians are four armed.

So now comes the trichy question – Vikramaditya II invaded Kanchi around 745 AD, got inspired by Kailasantha Temple, took back the chief sculptors and went about building temples in Pattadakkal. The horns / trident were certainly Pallava features, but what about the additional set of hands of the door guardians ? Was it a Pallava variant or a Chalukyan Variant that reverse flowed into Pallava styling. For that we need to study the Mathangeshwara Icons ( including its twin Mukteshwara ) for stylistic dating comparing with say the Vaikunta Perumal temple – where we have clear timelines established.

A delightful Miniature from Sundara Varadha perumal Temple – Utiramerur

I have been wanting to feature this delightful miniature from Utiramerur Sundara Varadha temple for almost 6 months now, but have been postponing in the hope that i could decipher the story behind the panel. With no luck till now, i guess its best to put it to you all to infer and comment.

First off Utiramerur as a temple town is a treasure trove – its abunds in many pallava beauties and this particular temple is called the ` sun among shrines ‘ – srivastuno bhaskaraah – the aptly named Sundara ( enchanting- beautiful) Varadha temple.

As you circum ambulate the main shrine – the three sculpture panels that adrone the sides of the shrine are masterpieces of stone work. I will try and feature each one by one, but we jump to the last sculptural panel – my favorite, for it is a puzzle that i have not been able to crack. The main sculpture is that of Brihu – a saint ( i had earlier mistaken it for Dhakshinamurthy)

You can see the sculpture from long shot

The main Sculpture now…

But what interested me was the minature panel just above the main sculpture. Lets zoom in a bit and see if you can decipher the amazing panel.

Ok, to make it easier for you – let me break up the key players in the panel.


Am lost to explain how the sculptor could go into such minute details – look at the seated asetic, the classic yoga pose – one feet resting over the other. and look at the detailing of the legs of the pedestal he is seated on – one one side is a lion and another side an elephant Yaazhi motiff.

I just fell in love with this cute lion motiff carved to such detail.

The other two – doing penance on one leg. with snakes for company.

Simply superb, pity the story behind this is not clear !!!

Enchanting Ascetic, Mesmerising Mohini

One of our viewers commented on the post of Sri Dhivakar, as to why despite lots of Shiva Bhikshadana forms being present, why i chose to depict only a few? A very good question and the answer is, inorder for the depth and beauty of his post to reach the audience, i kind of underplayed the sculptural content. Well it does give me a chance to run a sequel to that post.

So here you have Shiva Bhikshanda, you heard the story previously, now see how the master sculptor not only depicted the main form but also brought in the entire scene into his sculpture.

The Kailasantha temple in kanchi, is the grand creation of the great pallava kind Raja simhan, the temple was addressed as the big stone temple, but Great Raja Raja chola himself. Coming from someone who built the grandest of temples it quite a compliment and its not an exaggeration.. Every panel in the magnificent creation is sheer poetry and a delight to watch. Lets take the great shiva bhikshadana panel in long shot. Its beautifully framed by the famous prancing lion yaalis of raja simha. What grace and what artistic brilliance. Before we go into the main sculpture, we can see the left hand index finger of shiva pointing up – whats is it pointing to, the amazing dance of shiva ( see the similarity in the depiction to the one we saw in the mallai olakaneshwara temple)

Ok, lets come back to the composition. Shiva is the charming ascetic, the form of the sculpted youth exudes youth, vitality, the nakedness of his lower body, the grace of his bent knee, the slight flex of his left foot with the sandals, the broad shoulders, the nonchalant manner in which is right hand rests on his staff, the begging bowl stuck into his palm, the mischievous grin on his face – all portray youthful exuberance.


Not being content with this masterly depiction, the sculptor continuous with his story board, two rishi wives, are charmed by shiva, captivated by his grace and prostrate at his feet. Seeing this an angry rishi is rushing at shiva, raising his left hand to strike him.

Is there a reference in verse to this, yes there is.
4th Tirumurai

has the instruments such as kokkarai, cymbals and vīṇai to measure time when the youth dances.
adorns his waist with chank beads.has a cobra of five hoods.
remove the snake-bite, 5 he is in vakkari a shrine nāka īccaravaṉār has a form in which the waist is naked without cloth and caused the wives of the sages of tārukāvaṉam to be infatuaged with love.
Translation: V.M.Subramanya Aiyar–Courtesy: French Institute of Pondichery / EFEO (2006)

Ok, but what about the Mohini we saw earlier -thats from the Kanchi Devarajaswami temple pillar. Her you can again see the skill of the sculptor and more so his playfull intelligence.

The rishis are not only drunk on the bewitching charm of Vishnu as mohini, but are also getting drunk on the beverage which she is serving. They are thus shown in various stages of intoxication.

Is there a reference in verse to this, yes there is

2nd Tirumurai


you spread yourself into many living beings and worlds you absorbed them into you at the end of the world you created all the living beings which had a short respite, to be born again, in order that they may be get respite for a short while from their Karmams yourself and the noble-minded Māl who bent the wild lime tree got separated and joined together you desired the cremation ground where corpses come and felt joy in staying there
Translation: V.M.Subramanya Aiyar–Courtesy: French Institute of Pondichery / EFEO (2006)

A stone chain, bears a flower, to attract parrots

Thanks to my friend Mr. Chandrachoodan Gopalakrishnan ( who goes by the screen names ravages) got inspired to do part 2 of this amazing stone chain.
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Came across a similar interesting work in Thalakkad. Thalakkad has some interesting legends and even more interesting sculptures. But today we are just admiring chains, in stone. Just look at the complexity of this creation – a single block of stone ceiling, carved delicately to show the mesmerizing curves of a four headed serpent spreading its hood and from its gentle swaying curve start a chain of stone.
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But then, when we saw the Kanchipuram Varadaraja Swamy temple stone chain – we stopped short – for the sculptor not content at just sculpting a chain of stone, linked to the stone ceiling ( single piece) and not wanting to stop at that _ kind of a attempting to better your world record jump by attempting the impossible – literally goes for broke,a crowing stroke to forever leave his mark on his creation. Take a bow my unknown master sculpture, for who else can even think of attempting such. It drives me mad, how could he even try something as audacious as this .. like an artist finishing his painting with a exaggerated swagger, like a talented musician finishing his concert with a master stroke, he finishes his stone chain with a blooming flower bud and four parrots feasting on it.
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Oh, man, i got to take a break after this. its mind boggling.

Just a Chain, in stone

In Tamil
This stone work is truly the inspiration behind this blog. It is from Varadharaja swami temple,in Kanchipuram, a town on the ourskirts of chennai, which is a honeycomb of temples and steeped in tradition. The stonecraft of this temple, especially the Kalyana mandabam ( marriage hall) is simply astounding,yet due to lack of proper upkeep the only safeguards are a few shrubs of thorny branches.254

What you are seeing,believe me is not just a chain,but one carved out of single stone,its hangs from the stone ceiling and is living testimony to the greatness of the divine sculptor.

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for how else can you describe this piece of art,thousands of years of sculpting knowledge resulting in this sheer essence of architectural brilliance by the master sculptor,imagine the pain passing through his veins as he delicately brought forth his years of knowledge filtered though generations by word of mouth, passing through his blistered hands, into making this poetry in stone, hoping that they will stand till the sun and the moon shine, a testimony to his work…unsigned. The stone too kept up its word, its withstood the onslaught of invaders, forgive them for they were a hostile crowd, at war, but how to forgive the wanton destruction that’s happening now. Sometimes we are left to wonder, if they are better served by art thieves selling them to European museums …at least they will live there, lest stand and rot in the dust here,unappreciated, forgotten, that is the greatest insult to the art and the artist.

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