Odisha: Architecture students from Mangalore join XUB counterparts to learn Kalingan temple style

Bhubaneswar: Architects carry the signature of their times in their designs and creations. Be it the 7th, 10th, 13th Century monuments or the modern day structures, the architects in their designs, capture the essence of their thoughts and hence a team of students from Srinivas School of Architecture (SSA), Valachil, Mangalore arrived here today at Ekamra Walks to study Klingan temple design and architecture as part of their study curriculum.
After spending more than 2 hours studying the temples with three distinct styles, i.e. Rekha, Pidha and Khakhra style of Kalingan architecture the student and faculty members of SSA Mangalore were of the opinion that what the sketches and photos in their text books depict, the temples of Odisha and especially Bhubaneswar are far more beautiful and carry a distinct signature of the respective times and the creative genius of the old school of architecture.
All students of SSA Mangalore, under Visvesvaraya Technological University (VTU), Belgaum, Karnataka, are in the third year of their undergraduate studies in architecture asked questions to tour guides to know about the temple structures, style, types of stone used in them, influences of various school of thoughts, religion, society and the Royals, who through different periods ruled over Kalinga and also had acted as the financer of these magnificent edifices in stone. The students were guided by Associate Professor Leslie Dias and Assistant Professor Anvi Gor.
Ashwathi, a student from SSA Mangalore said “seeing the monuments live was a great moment for all of us as we had only seen their images. We were really fortunate to include the temples of Bhubaneswar as the city is known for its monuments.’’
Another student Jainam Kothari said “every region in the country is dotted with monuments influenced according to the local traditional architecture. Through our study we will be visiting across the width and breadth of the country to understand the traditional architecture, for which India is known in the world.’’
Saying that the Kalingan style of architecture has got an influence over other areas like the South East Asian nations as the ancient Kalinga was having maritime trade with that region, Amrita Adiga termed her experience “precious’’ as it would make her understand the subject of conservation architecture in future as it is also a sought-after specialization for students of architecture.
Ashish Gor, an investment banker from Mumbai, who also joined the Ekamra Walks Old Town Circuit todays said “we have read and learnt a lot about the heritage walk as it is widely publicized in the Internet. I really appreciate the effort of the City authorities and Odisha Tourism for this.’’
More than 30 students of Xavier School of Communications from Xavier University Bhubaneswar, led by their faculty members joined the heritage walk in the Old Town area and learnt the speciality of Kalingan temple building process and architecture.
The students of first year B.Sc. Mass Communication not only documented the entire journey from Mukteswar temple to Ekamra Van, the medicinal plant garden via Parasurameswar, Swarnajaleswar, Kotitirtheswar, Bindusagar, Anantavasudev, Old Dharamsala, Lingaraj, Chitrakarini, Sari Deula, Mohini, Vaitaal temple and Art Vision, an institute to train budding Odissi dancers by well-known Guru Ileana Citaristi, they also captured the video of the event for future reference and use in their in-house publications and productions.
Abhisanka Bhowmick, a student termed the experience as “educative and inspiring’’. The team from XUB also visited the heritage walk at Udayagiri-Khandagiri yesterday. Faculty members of XUB Prof Raj Kishore Patra, S. Tony Raj and Assistant Professor Nadira Khatun guided the students.
Besides others, Dr. Ramchandra R. Chavan from Maharashtra, who is in news recently for his solo cycle trip from Malvan in Maharashtra to Konark, covering 2,006 km, also joined the walk with Director Tourism Dr. Nitin Jawle. With the students from SSA, Mangalore, XUB and other walkers there were 90 participants today at Ekamra Walks.

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