Sunday, September 18, 2016

Video of the Reclining Buddha cave 26 at Ajanta near Aurangabad India

Reclining Buddha at Ajanta Cave (cave 26), Aurangabad, India

Here is a video clipping of cave 26 from Ajanta caves. This cave has a reclining Buddha depicting the moment of his death. The sculptures and the intricate work in this cave is amazing. In case you are short of time, I recommend that you see caves 1, 2, 16, 17, and 26.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

The reclining Buddha at Ajanta, A UNESCO World heritage site, near Aurangabad, India

Reclining Buddha, Ajanta cave 26
Ajanta, a UNESCO world heritage site in Aurangabad district, India, depicts the finest Indian wall paintings and architecture (quite a bit of it is still surviving). There are a total of 30 rock-cut caves dating back to the 2nd century BC, many are unfinished and quite a few have deteriorated a lot, but there are some better preserved caves where we can get a glimpse of ancient Indian art and architecture.

These caves had been long forgotten until a British officer stumbled upon one of the caves in 1819.

I will start my Ajanta diary by posting pictures and a short video clipping of Cave 26; this cave has a reclining Buddha, and some very nice sculptures and interesting paintings.

Ajanta cave 26

Ceiling of cave 26

Painting on the wall of cave 26

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Wildlife of Ladakh - Animals & Birds of Ladakh, India

Kiangs,Ladakh, India
I thought I would take a break from ancient architecture for a bit,and post something else today.

I am sharing pictures of animals and birds from Ladakh, courtesy Soma Jha, who was in Ladakh earlier this month.

Some of these are commonly sighted, but the black-necked cranes are special, they are not very often sighted because they come to Ladakh around this time of the year, to breed. Quite a few juvenile black -necked cranes can be sighted during this time. The Great-crested grebe and Bar-headed goose are found near the Tso Moriri Lake in Ladakh. The Woolly Hare is found everywhere in Ladakh, but the The Cape Hare is found in the Nubra region only.

Bharal-Blue Sheep-Ladakh,India

Long-tailed Marmot-Ladakh-India
Long-tailed Marmot-Ladakh-India

Woolly Hare-Ladakh-India
Bar-headed Goose- Tso Moriri Lake-Ladakh

Black-necked Crane,Ladakh
Chukar, Ladakh

Tibetan Snowfinch-Ladakh-India
Great Crested Grebe-Tso Moriri Lake-Ladakh

Hill Pigeons-Ladakh
White-winged Redstart,Ladakh-India

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Bibi Ka Maqbara, Aurangabad, India

Bibi Ka Maqbara, Aurangabad
There are quite a few places to see in Aurangabad, one of them is Bibi Ka Maqbara. If you have time, may want to spend another day in Aurangabad and see Bibi Ka Maqbara, Daulatabad Fort, and if time permits Pani ki chakki. I will cover these places in my next few posts.

Built by Aurangzeb's son's, Azam Shah in 1678 in Aurangabad in the memory of his mother Rabia-ud-Durani, Bibi Ka Maqbara is a beautiful structure and looks like a replica of The Taj Mahal. There is a reason for the similarity, it was intended to be as much an imposing structure as The Taj Mahal, but due to lack of funds imposed by Aurangzeb, it could not be what it intended to be, and therefore this structure is often referred to as the Poor Man's Taj.

If one were not to compare this structure to the Taj Mahal, it would be a beautiful structure anyway, the carvings and the work on the walls and ceilings are beautiful. Interestingly, this structure was designed by Ata-Ullah, who was the son of Ustad Ahmad Lahauri, one of the chief designer's of the Taj Mahal.

Entrance to the Maqbara

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Ellora Cave temples, UNESCO World Heritage site India

Cave temple 21, Ellora, India
This is my last post on Ellora cave temples and paintings...I hope I could bring a little bit of Ellora to you through my posts...this is one place you must visit, especially if art and sculptures interest you.

Excavated in the 7th Century A.D, Cave temple 21 is another beautiful cave temple dedicated to Shiva. I loved the sculptures in this cave. There is a sculpture of Ravana shaking Kailasa, and this seems to be one of the most popular themes in Ellora, we saw similar sculptures in a couple of other cave temples in Ellora.  

Ravana shaking Kailasa

Carvings on a pillar