VISHNUDHARMOTTARA PURANA PDF

Vishnudharmottara Purana Encyclopedic work of three khandas The Vishnudharmottara Purana is an encyclopedic work of three khandas and dealing not only with various stories, myths and legends but also with varied subjects, viz. This work is divided in three khandas according to their subjects. First khanda is related with the pauranika legends and rebirths. The second khanda deals in pauranika ritualism.

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It also briefly mentions about shading and how to go about drawing. The current article covers the concepts about depiction of things seen and unseen in the world around us, or rather how the objects in nature could be visualized and personified as if each aspect of it is a living person with a character and attribute of its own. The abstract and the realistic depiction The Chitrasutra, at several places, discusses how the persons and objects that we see in our day to day life, as also the nature that surrounds us could be depicted in art.

It adopts a two-pronged approach. In other words, it was emphasizing that art was more than photographic reproduction of visible objects. It was not about how the world appears to one and all, but how the artist experiences and visualizes it. These two approaches are not mutually exclusive; they exist side by side on a canvas and complement each other.

The abstract and the realistic depiction are thus the two sides of Indian art. The latter is outward looking, and derived through observation; while the other is inspired by emotive perception and visualization of its essence. The two together enrich the aesthetic experience provided by an art work. Realistic depiction of objects As regards the realistic depiction of the objects, the text considers it essential to lend credibility to their depictions.

Rupa-bheda consists in the knowledge of special characteristics of things — natural or manmade; say, the differences in appearances among many types of men, women or natural objects or other subjects of the painting; while Sadrushya aims to depict, in painting, those distinctions and resemblances.

The Chitrasutra instructs the resemblances should not merely be general but should extend to details as well. Every part of the object represented should agree with the general treatment of the whole object. It also says that the persons should be painted according to their country; their region, their colour, dress, and general appearances as observed. The text also describes the characteristics of different tribes and castes as distinguished by their complexion; noticeable physical features, costumes and habits.

Since it is rather detailed, I have posted it separately. Please check Part four ] The representation of objects as they are seen or observed normally in life, is termed in the text as Drista, meaning in the way the things appear or as they are visible.

In contrast to that, the text speaks of Adrista, meaning objects as visualized or personified by the artist, though they might not actually appear as such. Having made this distinction, the text suggests that the two should together be employed to harmoniously blend the subject and its illustration; the subject and its effect; and the reality and its symbol, in order to provide the painting an expressive language.

For instance, while faithfully depicting the details of the subject say, the hours of day or night, or the seasons , its effect on the nature around and on the persons are also to be symbolically pictured. These help enhancing the quality of depiction of the subject and the artistic eloquence of the painting. The daybreak is suggested by the opening of the lotus petals in the pond and the bees swarming around; the farmer with his plow proceeding to his fields Midday is suggested by the Muni-kumaras clasping their hands in yama-pasa-mudra peeping at the sun through the aperture created by the joining of the fingers.

Evening is suggested by the approaching darkness, lighting of the lamps and return-home of the cows at go-dhuli. The twilight is also suggested by the roaming on highstreets of courtesans and paramour vita-s, cheta-s and raja-vallabhas. It argues that the art of sculpting is far more difficult than painting. And, it is also not easy to bring out the differences between a dead body and a sleeping person, particularly if the two are placed side by side.

The sculptor — artist shilpi will have to resort to some other clever suggestions to bring out the differences. That depends on the ingenuity of the artist. The seasons Similarly, the text describes the characteristics of each of the six seasons as are gathered through keen observation of nature.

It says that in general, the seasons should be shown according to their character. The text suggests showing the ways of depicting in the painting the six seasons ritu of the year. Such descriptions also abound in the classic Kavyas. The fresh blossoms of the Asoka trees excite the amorous lovers with budding sprouts decorating their ears.

And, by merry men and women, vernal trees in bloom, bees swarming about and cuckoos perched on tree branches. The Rainbow on dark clouds stimulate mirth of the peacocks with spread colorful tails dancing as if to celebrate the arrival of cool showers, add luster and grace to beauty of the picture.

In the paintings, the gentle rain is shown by slight vertical dots in white, like scattered pearls, against the darkened sky. Ghana eva tarala-balike tatid iva pite Gitagovinda Garajabhis satadid-balakas-balair meghais sasalyam manah Mricchkatika. Niruddha-vatatayanam-mandirodare hutasano bhanumato gabhastyah , guruni vasamsyabala sayau-vanah prayanti kaletra janasya sevyatam Ritusamhara. There is even a case of an impetuous young girl , aided by her chamber-maid, eloping with her Lover, riding an elephant of all the escape vehicles…!!

She looks anxious and rather scared. The lovelorn viraha vyasthaya , lonely maiden in search of lover is to be drawn as pale vyanjayanti and emaciated krisyam ; her hair in a single braid eka-veni is twisted and unkempt.

She , in sorrow, has given up applying cosmetics or wearing ornaments and colourful dresses. She has grown lean and pale ; her eyes are constantly searching for her separated lover. Pregnancy is suggested by pallor in the face, slimness of the body, sparce ornaments and a natural languor. It was a popular design. His torso is somewhat thrust out, the hair tied up, the front knee is bent back and retracted; and he is ready to attack.

That is the reason the Indian figurative art is not mere portraiture of the specific; but it is a symbol pointing to a larger principle, akin to the finger pointing to the moon. Barahmasa Inspired by the vivid word-pictures portrayed in the Chitrasutra, a school of painting known as Barahmasa meaning, the twelve-months , flourished during the later periods.

Its scenery epitomizes the landscape of the imagination, in Indian painting. This school lovingly captures the delights, the emotions and the enjoyment of the lovers in each of the six seasons. These sublime works of art, which gained fame as iconic representations of the seasons and as metaphors for emotions, have inspired generations of artists, poets and lovers. Each month bringing a special message to the beloved, every season a special reminder of the joys of love and longing.

The lady-love is frightened and she clings to her lover in delicate embrace. Yet, she cannot take her eyes away from the spectacular and amazing drama of thunder and lightning being enacted in the skies. The lady love, dressed in her best, is exhorting her lover to stay at home and enjoy with her the intoxicating delights of Chaitra. The painting that illustrates the month of Agahana Agrahayana or Margashira: Nov-Dec , in Hemantha ritu, the early winter, depicts clear skies, the swans migrating from the cold mountains and the lovers standing on the terrace overlooking the river with water-birds floating lazily.

The day is neither cold nor warm; it is just comfortable. The lovers are wrapped in light-warm clothing. Peace and tranquillity abounds in nature. The lovers are saying to each other how fortunate we are to be alive and to be together in this lovely evening. All these produced a series of most enchanting pictures. Those paintings are a delightful combination of art, music, poetry and a studied, controlled sophistication.

It also elucidated the season and the time of day and night in which a particular raga is to be sung. It is a delightful amalgam of art, colour, poetry and music. Here, a young woman plays veena as she waits for her lover. As she stops playing the veena and paces restlessly, clutching a flower garland, the deer in the park surround her as if expecting her to continue playing the melody.

Its scenery epitomizes the landscape of the imagination. For instance, along with the bright sun, one could depict the images of creatures suffering from heat; and of the flowers and creepers wilting under the hot sun. The shower of rain could be suggested by a person well covered; or running for shelter under a tree. Similarly, along with the full moon the kumuda flower in full bloom could also to be shown.

Such artistic suggestions, symbols and effects add to the depth of a painting. Some of the pictures lovingly capture the delights, the emotions and the enjoyment of the lovers in each of the six seasons. She wears his peacock feather, He dons her lovely, delicate crown; She sports his yellow garment, He wraps himself in her beautiful sari How charming the very sight of it.

Srivasta Goswami, Trans. The Divine Consort, 87 Elaborating on how the nature in a landscape painting could be depicted, the text suggests: The sky should be shown without any special colours and full of birds; A hill — by a cluster of rocks, peaks, trees, creepers, waterfalls; A forest — by various sorts of trees, birds and beasts; Water — by fish, tortoise, lotuses and other water plants.

Please tell me more about representation of water. What are its true and untrue colors? Cities and village scenes The text also explains the ways for depicting the atmosphere of a locale. While Elaborating on Adrista, the text says the objects in nature could also be visualized or personified by the artist, endowing its objects with distinct personality.

A painting can comfortably handle things that are virtually impossible to be shown in sculpture; those things include the color, space or the darkness of the night etc.

Painting enjoys the virtue and facility of rendering the absolute in tangible and visual forms. Each form of depiction had a purpose and a place of its own; but they often combined to produce a magical effect, bestowing on the Indian art a unique character and vision.

We therefore see in the work of the ancient painters, subtle nuances as also the representations of the tangible world, the beauty of its forms, its volume and weight; and yet there is always a suggestion of something which is more and beyond.

The visualization and personification of objects in nature, as envisaged in the Chitrasutra, employs whole sets of symbolism. For instance, the sky when painted in its natural and descriptive context should be painted almost without any color. But, when sky is personified, it should be depicted as noble person, blue-lotus in color, wearing a garment of that color; and carrying sun and moon in his hands.

The sun in its natural depiction should be bright and shining, lightening up the canvas. His left and right hands should be shown projecting sunbeams, resembling reins of a chariot. The personified Moon should be made with a white body as composed of water , in white garments, lustrous, with all ornamental and four hands.

In his two hands he should be shown holding two kumuda night-lotuses flowers in full bloom. While visualizing and personifying the rivers, they are to be represented as persons having their own character and personality. They have to be given a human shape, and they should be astride their vahana mount on bent knees, and holding in their hands a pitcher.

Each river it is said has a distinct personality and character. The Yamuna, in contrast, is of dark hue, placid and wide. Another name for water in Sanskrit is Apah.

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Vishnudharma and Vishnudharmottara Purana

Along with the narratives, it also deals with cosmology, cosmogony, geography, astronomy, astrology, division of time, pacification of unfavourable planets and stars, genealogies mostly of kings and sages , manners and customs, penances, duties of Vaishnavas, law and politics, war strategies, treatment of diseases of human beings and animals, cuisine, grammar, metrics, lexicography, metrics, rhetoric, dramaturgy, dance, vocal and instrumental music and arts. Chapters deal with grammar, lexicography, metrics and rhetoric. Chapters deal with vocal and instrumental music. Chapters deal with dance and dramturgy.

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The Vishnudharmottara Part III

It also briefly mentions about shading and how to go about drawing. The current article covers the concepts about depiction of things seen and unseen in the world around us, or rather how the objects in nature could be visualized and personified as if each aspect of it is a living person with a character and attribute of its own. The abstract and the realistic depiction The Chitrasutra, at several places, discusses how the persons and objects that we see in our day to day life, as also the nature that surrounds us could be depicted in art. It adopts a two-pronged approach. In other words, it was emphasizing that art was more than photographic reproduction of visible objects. It was not about how the world appears to one and all, but how the artist experiences and visualizes it.

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Vishnudharmottara Purana

Contents[ edit ] The extant text is divided into three khandas parts. The first khanda comprises adhyayas chapters , the second khanda comprises adhyayas and the third khanda comprises adhyayas. The third Khanda[ edit ] Chapter I of the third khanda deals with the origin of image making and the interdependence of arts. Chapters deal with grammar, lexicography, metrics and rhetoric. Chapters deal with vocal and instrumental music. Chapters deal with dance and dramaturgy.

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