Monday, February 22, 2010
Sri Chandramouleswaraa Temple, Arsikere
Grandeur Etched In stone (Part-5)
The ancient Siva Temple at Arsikere with a unique frontal polygonal Mandapa (hall) reflects the architecture and sculpture of the Hoysalas. The ancient temple dedicated to Lord Siva, known as Kattameswara and also Chandramouliswara Temple,
It reflects the grand architectural style of the Hoysalas with a specially designed polygonal ‘Mandapa’ (hall), in the front though modest in size and figure sculpture, is considered the most complex in architecture among surviving Hoysala monuments because of its ground plan: a 16-pointed star shaped Mantapa(hall), in addition to an asymmetrical star shaped shrine, whose star points are of three different types.The archives of 1220 AD refer to this temple as ‘Sri Kalameswara Temple’.
The temple, which faces east like all Hoysala constructions, uses soapstone as basic building material and is an Ekakuta shrine (single shrine) with two Mantapas one open and one closed. All three units are connected to form a unity.
The sanctum (Garbagraha) enshrines a Linga, the universal symbol of God Shiva. The Mandapa is where the devotees gather. The closed Mandapa does not have any windows. The ceiling in the closed Mantapa is divided into nine compartments or "bays" by the four lathe turned pillars that support the ceiling. The entrance is through a "bay" between the two Mandapas.
The outer wall of the vestibule shares the same decoration as the outer wall of the shrine, but is inconspicuous because it forms a short continuation between the wall of the shrine and that of closed Mantapa. Near this temple ‘Malekal Thirupathi’ where the beautiful temple on the name of lord Venkataramana is located.