Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Secrets Of Ajanta Caves

Ajanta caves (India)
Ajanta caves in India , The Ajanta caves are a series of Buddhist rock-cut cave temples and monasteries, near Ajanta village, north-central Maharashtra state, western India, celebrated for their wall paintings which date from the 2nd century BCE to about 480 or 650 CE. Ajanta caves were discovered by an Army Officer in the Madras Regiment of the British Army in 1819 and listed amongst the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 1983. The rock-cut caves of Maharashtra are world famous and illustrate the degree of skill and artistry that Indian craftsmen had achieved several hundred years ago. Ajanta caves are 29 in numbers (consists of stups halls and monastic halls) and excavated in a horse shoe shaped rock surface, all caves were connected to each other with stairs. Many of the caves have the most exquisite detailed carvings on the walls, pillars and entrances as well as magnificent wall paintings. The main theme of paintings in the caves is the illustration of various Jataka stories and events from the life of Buddha. The caves provide a panorama of life in ancient India and are a source of all kinds of information like hair styles, ornaments, textiles, musical instruments, details of architecture, customs etc. It was from this collection of classical Indian art that a particular style was formed that travelled with Buddhism to many parts of the world. Although the sculpture, particularly the rich ornamentation of the caitya pillars, is noteworthy, it is the fresco-type paintings that are the chief interest of Ajanta. These paintings depict colourful Buddhist legends and divinities with an exuberance and that is unsurpassed in Indian art. The temples are hollowed out of granite cliffs on the inner side of solid rock, now question comes how the artist who painted the detailed frescoes and chiseled out the intricate carvings, managed to work in the dark interiors of the caves. It has been noticed that the caves are illuminated by natural light for part of the day and it is presumed that metal mirrors or sheets of white cloth were used to reflect sunlight into the inner recesses. Windows are arranged according to positions of sun to gather full light inside the Caves and directly focused on the paintings and Statues.
Caves are wonderful places of ancient art, which forces people to think how is it possible to built these beautiful caves by cutting a solid rock with stone tools and hammers in 2nd century. Inside walls of the caves, roofs and pillars are fully carved by designs & layers, and some statues are made from single piece of stone. Still question remains same, what kind of technology and tools they have used to construct these caves in 2nd century, if they used stone tools then i m sure, it required hundreds of people and years to complete. Ajanta caves are one of mysterious places of earth, these are still difficult to built with full modern technology by cutting full rock...
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