Facade and Entrance
Dated approximately 550 CE, Cave – 1 is the first of the four rock-cut caves carved out of a soft sandstone hill near Badami in Karnataka, India. The temple structures inside the cave were created by meticulously carving out the stone material from rock to create beautiful structures, sculptures, and sculptural reliefs.
Like any traditional mantapa style temple, there is a sabhamantapa (main hall) in front of the garbhagriha and a mukhamantapa (verandah) in front of the sabhamantapa. The entrance to the temple is through a flight of steps leading to the mukhamantapa.
The facade shows the pillars of the mukhamantapa. Inside the mukhamantapa and sabhamantapa, there are more pillars, each embellished with beautiful carvings.
Carved on the extended wall on the right side of the entrance is a large-size sculptural relief depicting Shiva as Nataraja (Dancing King) performing Tandava Nritya (Tandava Dance).
Carved on the left side extended wall is a panel with the large-size relief of Shiva’s dwarapala at the center, Vrishaba-Kunjara illusionary carving at the bottom and Shiva-Parvati on Nandi at the top.
Cave – 1 Images
– Cave – 1 Ground Plan
– Right side view: Nataraja performing Tandava Nritya
– Left side view: Dwarapala, Shiva-Parvati, Vrishabha-Kunjara
– Mukhamantapa right wall: Ardhanarishvara and Sage Bhringi
– Mukhamantapa left wall: Harihara – Fusion of Shiva and Vishnu
– Mukhamantapa ceiling: Nagaraja
– Interior: Garbhagriha and pillars
– Garbhagriha: Shivalinga
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