The learned author has missed many aspects of Nepalese culture.
The so called Virupakshya is described by him as a nobel man. If the author
had studied more carefully he would not have missed the third eye indicating
that the figure is one of the manifestations of Shiva and not a nobel man.
Nepal is a tourist's paradise with an infinite variety of
interesting things to see and do. Nepal has many things to offer the visitor
the flourishing of art and architecture a demonstrated by the temples of
Kathmandu Valley, the natural beauties of the soaring peaks of Himalayas
including Mountain Everest and others.
is rich in art, architecture, and iconography of the images,
the way of life of its people, festivals, panoramic view of
the Himalayas and different ethnic groups that live within the
parameters of this area. The art and architecture at valley
has cornered more glory than similar shrines anywhere else in
the country. The monuments of valley are glorious proportions
and richly ornate Sculpture works and wood works are incredibly
finding. Most of the art and architecture is based on the religious
themes taken from Hinduism and Buddhism. To understand valley
art and architecture thus requires knowledge of these two religions,
their characteristics, development and nature. Katmandu art
and architecture in time has developed characteristics of its
own. The reasons lay in the Nepal's geographic location and
the extraordinary inhabitants of the Katmandu valley. The art
and architecture has been influenced by the Newars since earliest
times. They carried their craft and artistic skills beyond the
borders of Nepal to Tibet and China as well. The renowned artist
and architect Arniko (1245-130A. D.) who came from Patan worked
in Lhasa and Peking on the commission of the emperor of China,
Katmandu valley is the magical kingdom's capital having seven
world-renowned heritage sites within a distance of 20 km radius.
All three Durbar squares, Kathmandu, Patan and Bhaktapur are
full of art, architecture, iconographic antiquities and festivals.
There are metaphorically more festivals than the days in our
calendar. Corneal w. Kirkpartick remarks Kathmandu valley
has "as many temples as houses and as many Gods as people".
of the temples of the Katmandu valley have layers of the roofs
which is called Newar style. The scholars give many names to
Nepalese pagoda: Nepal style, Newar style, multi roofed temple,
storied style temple, multi staged temple etc. There are mainly
four kinds of plan in Nepalese pagoda temple: rectangular square,
circular, and octagonal.
Nepal is the home of the so-called Pagoda style architecture
in the world. The main features of Nepalese style pagoda are:
the temples with multiple plinths. The stairs are made by cutting
the plinth. Important and big square temples have either a door
or four in each direction. Raising wooden pillar from the sanctum
and making space to circumambulate the temple often make pagodas.
Above main gate there is always a tympanum (torana). The image
of the main God of torana corresponds with the God of the temple.
After completing the wall of the ground floor, wooden beams
are kept above the wooden base support of bamboo or wood is
used to hold the soil kept above. Vertical beams are put to
support all the storeys. These vertical beams in turn are supported
by horizontal beams kept in slanting shape. Struts (tundal)
are kept in 45 degree angle to support the horizontal beams.
Struts add beauty to Nepalese Pagoda. In fact, struts are the
supporting element of the Nepalese Pagoda but they also serve
as decorative architecture.
If observed carefully, corner struts contain united shape
of human being, animals and birds. They have wings, horns,
human shape or image of birds. It is totally in anthropomorphic
style. They are also called Kushala (horse corner). The struts
have idols of God and Goddess. Whether the Pagoda is one storey
or five, the corner of roof is always bent upward. Birds and
other addition at the top of the bent corner is the common
feature of Pagoda temple. These birds give symbolic meaning
that they seem like taking the temple to the heaven from the
sky. Another feature of the Nepalese Pagoda is the artistic
window, wind bell (fegan), erotic carving, caption of pictures
and numbers found in some carved struts.
Nepalese Culture, Society and Tourism By: Diwas Dhakal