Hinduism has always gloried in depicting the divine, and over the centuries has inspired art which is often colourful and visually exciting. This survey provides an introduction to the Hindu temple architecture, sculpture and painting of the Indian subcontinent over more than two thousand years. Styšistically Hindu art is not homogeneous, so this book adopts an approach based on iconography and the history of cults. Two introductory chapters provide historical and religious background; these are followed by a chapter on the architecture, decoration and use of Hindu temples. The central section of the book is devoted to an examination of the art of the three major cults of Hinduism - the worship of Shiva, Vishnu and the Great Goddess, in all their many forms. The last chapter offers a chronological and regional overview of this complex and fascinating subject.
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Andhra Pradesh animal ascetic auspicious avatara Benares Bengal brahmin bronze Buddha Buddhist Central India centre century bc Chola column connection consort cult darshan dated Deccan decorated deity depicted Devi devotees divine Durga earliest early elaborate elements epic especially examples female fertility festival figures frequently Ganesha Ganges goddess gods gopura Gujarat Hindu Hindu art Hindu temples Hinduism human icon iconography important incarnation of Vishnu Indo-Aryans inscription Jain king known Krishna Lakshmi later legend linga located Mahabalipuram Manasa mandapa Mathura millennium Mughal Narasimha northern India Orissa painting Pallava Parvati period pilgrims popular probably Puri Rajasthan Rama recorded region religious ritual river rock-cut sacred sanctuary sculpture seen shikhara Shiva shown shrine Skanda snakes South India southern stone structures style subcontinent surviving Tamil Nadu temple architecture terracotta texts tradition tribal usually vahana Vaishnava Vallabhacharya Varaha Vedas Vedic Vijayanagara Vishnu western India worship