Art and Architecture
They developed the Deccan or Vesara style in the building of structural
temples, which reached culmination, however, only under the Rashtrakutas
and the Hoyasalas.
It was the Chalukyas who perfected the art of stone building, that is, stones
finely joined without mortar.
Under their auspices, the Buddhists, Jainas and Brahmins competed with
each other in building cave temples.
Though the cave frescoes began earlier, some of the finest specimens
belonged to the Chalukya era. The murals that were executed on the walls
dealt with not only religious themes but also with secular ones. In the first
monastic hall at Ajanta, we notice a painting depicting the reception given to
a Persian embassy by Pulakesin II.
The temple-building activity under the Chalukyas of Badami can be
broadly divided into two stages. The first stage is represented by the
temples at Aihole and Badami. Aihole is a town of temples and contains
no fewer than 70 structures, of which four are noteworthy.
Ladh Khan temple is a flat roofed building.
Durga temple was an experiment seeking to adopt the Buddhist chaitya to
a Brahmanical temple.
Hucimaligudi is very similar to the Durga temple, but smaller than it.
The Jaina temple of Meguti shows some progress in the erection of
structural temples, but it is unfinished.
Of the temples at Badami, the Melagitti Sivalaya is a small but finely
proportioned and magnificently located temple. A group of four rock-cut
halls at Badami (three of them Hindu and one Jaina) are all of the same
type. The workmanship in the caves is marked by a high degree of
technical excellence. Though the front is very unassuming, the interior is
treated with great skill and care in every detail.
The second stage is represented by the temples at Pattadakal. There are
about ten temples here, four in the northern style and six in the southern
style. In the Deccan both styles were used. There was even a tendency to