June 2011 Ezine - " The Ajanta Caves" a must see for Art Lovers
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Summer is soo here. Growing up I would eagerly wait for the summers. It meant no school, no exams, no homeworks , but just lots and lots of time to play and laze around. Every summer we would travel to our grandparents village. Of all the things I remember grandma would buy big fresh yellow mangoes and store them in the rice bin. Everyday after lunch and dinner I would put my hand into the bin and dig through the rice for the sweet smelling mangoes ( most part of the summers were all about mangoes..).
But, one summer when I was about 15, my parents decided we go on a trip to the Western India visiting Mumbai(the cosmopolitan city), Shirdi (a holy town), Aurangabad (a historic town) and Ajanta Caves.
Ajanta, a UNESCO world heritage site, is famous for its Buddhist rock-cut cave temples and monasteries with their extraordinary wall paintings. They are cut into the volcanic lava of the Deccan plateau of India in the forest ravines of the Sahyadri Hills and are set in beautiful serene surroundings.
About 30 caves were excavated between the 1st century BCE and the 7th century CE. 5 of the caves were "caityas"(sanctuaries/temple) and the rest 25 were "viharas"(monasteries). The temples and monasteries, thought to have been occupied by some 200 monks and artisans. Although the sculpture, particularly the rich ornamentation of the caitya pillars, is noteworthy, it is the fresco-type paintings that are of chief interest in Ajanta. These paintings depict colorful Buddhist legends and divinities with an exuberance and vitality that is unsurpassed in Indian art.
By AD 650 the caves were gradually forgotten until their rediscovery by a British tiger-hunting party in 1819.. The caves are cut into the side of a cliff which rises above a meander in the Waghora River. Today the caves are reached by a road which runs along a terrace mid-way up the cliff, but each cave was once linked by a stairway to the edge of the water.
The trip to the caves was my first experience with original art. I was ecstatic with the beautiful colors, the theme, the jewelry, the mystery in the paintings and everything about the Caves.
One of the Original paintings from the cave
The trip was an experience that I can never forget, it gave me my purpose in life and it changed me inside out. I was in awe...and was sure to become either an Archeologist or an Artist. For the sake of my mother's peace of mind... here I am an Artist.
A lot of my works are inspired by the Ajanta Paintings.
If you are in India or ever visit India, this is one place you ought to-got to visit after the Taj Mahal (of course!!).
My new series "Ganesha - The Obstacle Remover" is offically completed and is up for sale. The series contains three paintings..
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Meet Sandhya Manne
Hey there... Glad to see you here!! I am a self-taught Indian Artist living in Garland,Texas with my husband, and two little kids. I paint everyday at my studio in the Mall. While my predominant medium is oils and Ink drawings, I also enjoy creating mixed media.. Since the start of my art career in 2009, my artworks have been part of private collections in Canada, USA and India. I am currently exhibiting through juried shows in Dallas-Fort Worth area. Learn More
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Sandhya is a very talented artist, her artworks are truly amazing. The color schemes and the designs that she uses is very unique and is kind to the eyes and happy at heart. All her paintings and artwork reflect a...