Archive for the Category » Ajanta wall paintings «

Cave Paintings

Saturday, May 16th, 2009 | Author:

India has always been very illustrious when it comes to creativity and artistry.

Cave painting or rock painting is one of the oldest forms of art in India. Caves of Bhimbetka, Ellora, Bagh, Sittanavasal and Ajanta are the landmarks of the Indian skill and expertise. Cave paintings are a casement to the history of our country. People then, used to live in these caves


Ajanta caves are one of the biggest tourism spots in India. There are around thirty caves that are a part of Ajanta caves. The Ajanta caves have attractive paintings on the walls. The detailed work on the caves is outstanding. The themes of the paintings on the Ajanta caves depict the life of Lord Buddha. Caligraphic lines like portraits, narrative illustration and ornamental embellishment are the main characteristics of these paintings.


Besides the Ajanta caves, the Ellora caves portray some exceptional art work. These caves are situated in the city of Aurangabad and depict the lives of Lord Vishnu and Goddess Laxmi. The Kailasa temple at Ellora caves is a splendid construction carved out of a solid rock and is one of the chief beauties of the Ellora caves.


Some of the other magnificent examples of cave paintings can be observed in the Bagh caves, Sittanavasa, Ramgarh hill caves, Bhimabetaka and many more. The Bagh caves exhibit the traditions of the Indian art forms whereas the Sittanavasa caves display the Pandyan period. The Bhimabetaka consist of rock paintings describing the intricacies faced by the native man.


Cave paintings are a representation of the pre-historic period in India and they also give us a picture of the talent and excellence of artistry and proficiency in India. Many organizations have come up to preserve and protect caves but it is our responsibility as a citizen to safeguard these symbols of history created by our ancestors.

Wall paintings at Ajanta

Sunday, April 12th, 2009 | Author:


ajanta-caves-paintingsThe wall paintings at Ajanta were carved out as a result of the Buddhists and the Jain monks’ retreat for meditation and reflection during Indian monsoon season. Paintings at Ajanta seem to have started in the second century BC. Though some of the original paintings seem to have deteriorated, what still remains is a stunning manifestation of art with Buddha depiction ornamenting the pillars.

All the walls and the ceilings of the cave are covered with paintings. Symbolisms about forms of existence, life in hell and life in heaven, Gods, etc are depicted here. The ceilings usually have a simple circle with human figures inside it; the walls at Ajanta have a multiplicity of themes. In one of the verandas of the temple, is a painting depicting the ‘wheel of life’. It is known for its exquisite artistry and innate carvings. In this wheel, passion is depicted in the form of a turtledove, hate is depicted in the form of snake and delusion is depicted as a pig. These form the center of the painting. Painting analysts across the globe are still trying to decipher the painting, but they have not been fully successful at it. Moreover the paintings of the human world on the wheel are damaged and all that one can see is a few men conversing and some parts of the animal world.

In other paintings at Ajanta, Buddha is illustrated preaching to his mother Mahamaya and others in Tushita heaven. There is hardly any evidence or information about the artists of the Ajanta wall paintings. It is belived that due to the remoteness of the place, the artists came from all over the allied territories and the empire. Paintings at Ajanta are a retreat to the eyes and all ardent Indian paintings lovers must visit this magnanimous center of art atleast once!