amaravati-school-of-art

In News: Recently, a Buddhist relic, having features belonging to Amaravati school of Art was unearthed by a group of indologists on the banks of River Gundlakamma in Andhra Pradesh.

About Amaravati School of Art:

  • A different type of art form evolved and flourished in Amaravati for nearly six centuries, commencing from 200-100 BCE. 
  • Patronized first by the Satavahanas and later by the Ikshvakus and other groups (feudatories, officials, and merchants.
  • The Amaravati School of Art flourished in the region of Andhra Pradesh between the lower valleys of rivers Krishna and Godavari.
    • An important characteristic of the Amaravati school is the ‘narrative art’. 
      • The medallions were carved in such a manner that they depict an incident in a natural way. 
      • For example one medallion depicts a whole story of ‘taming of an elephant by the Buddha’.
  • The material used in Amravati stupas is a distinctive white marble. 
  • Amaravati sculptures have a sense of movement and energy with profound and quiet naturalism in human, animal and floral forms.
  • Prominent places where this style developed are Amravati, Nagarjunikonda, Goli, Ghantasala and Vengi.
  • There is Symbolic representation of Buddha's life, although in two or three places he is personified too.
  • The Amaravati Stupa has pradakshina patha enclosed within a vedika on which many narrative stories from the life of Buddha and bodhisattva dominate just like Sanchi Stupa , however its structural anatomy is more complex than Sanchi.
  • Both religious and secular images were present in this style.
  • Later, this style got transformed into Pallava and Chola architecture.
 

Gandhara

Mathura

Amaravati

Nature

Greco Roman Influence

Indigenous

Indigenous

Main Stone

Grey Sandstone

Red Sandstone

White Marble

Religious Connotation

Mainly Buddhist

Budhdist, Jainism and Hinduism

Mainly Buddhist

Main Patron

Kushans

Kushans

Satavahanas

Image

Spiritual Buddha images.

Very Stylish with wavy hair.

Delighted Buddha and no spiritual look.

Mainly depict stories of Jatakas.