¤ The Historic Perspective
Kangra Valley - a identify which spells a rich history. A capital city which the Katoch dynasty guarded for ages. A Pandora’s box which attracted quite a few plunderers. An alcove where bloomed the well-known Kangra school of artwork.
That’s Kangra. and significantly extra.
Tour this ancient city of Kangra that lies overlooking the gushing torrents with the Banganga River, a tributary on the Beas rising through the southern slopes on the milky Dhauladhars. But stating basically that Kangra is definitely an historical town just isn't enough; it has the distinction of being the internet site of your oldest recorded war in human background. The Rig Veda (roughly 1200 BC), one in the oldest texts inside the world, mentions the 12-year war in between Divodas (king of your Aryans) and Shambar (king from the hill areas once the Aryans initial arrived in India) being fought right here. That was around 1500 BC. The land also figures in innumerable episodes of history, legends and folklore. It even finds a mention in Alexander’s (about 326 BC) war information. The great Indian epic Mahabharata cites this great Kangra as Trigarta.
The existing identify - Kangra - given to this region isn't quite previous. It came into vogue inside the late medieval period and is supposedly derived through the time period kan-ghara (a location where ears are cast). However it just isn't recognized why the expression arrived to become utilized to this place, almost certainly simply because of some long-lost legend or folktale.
¤ Primary Tourist Attraction Places of Kangra Valley
Today Kangra is also referred to as Bhawan or Nagarkot. Bhawan for the reason that of your Bajreshwari Devi Temple, and Nagarkot since from the fort Nagarkot. The cruel earthquake of 1905 saw to it that Nagarkot’s impermeability became a issue on the past. The place where the dilapidated fort mutely stands is called Purana Kangra or Previous Kangra. The other points of interest with the town would be the Gorakh Dibbi Temple, the old Jain Temple and the Gupt Ganga Temple.
Although Kangra served as the hotbed of power in the olden occasions, all the hustle-bustle of a funds metropolis has now shifted elsewhere - to Dharamsala, the present district headquarter. Leaving Kangra with recollections of a glorious past and creating to get a destination par excellence.
¤ The Kangra School of Miniature Painting
Different schools of miniature painting, collectively referred to as Pahari, flourished between the 17th and 19th centuries within the sub-Himalayan states.
The hilly region, then divided into 22 princely states, was ruled by Rajput kings or chieftains who had been all great connoisseurs of art, with most of them maintaining ateliers.
The focal points of their lives were war, hunting, lineage, and the zenana. Also partial to really like themes, particularly the legends of Radha and Krishna, the Rajputs liked them depicted in their paintings.
¤ Pahari Paintings
The early Pahari paintings in the mid-17th century had been inside the Basholi design (dubbed so because of its association with the king of Basholi). These are extraordinarily colourful and charged with vitality and emotion.
Two persistent strains may be observed - a fondness for the portraits from the local rajas in plain white clothes and for those gods of your Hindu pantheon.
The paintings bear resemblance to Rajasthani and Malwa paintings but this can be attributed towards the truth that the kings of the princely states in Himachal had been Rajputs.
Some of the telling traits are the use of very classy two-dimensional architectural settings topped by domes or pavilions, bands of scrollwork pattern and the use of elaborately figured rugs. There are many striking works in this genre as the Basholi fashion, with its powerful indigenous Indian factor, is nicely suited towards the portrayal of many-headed Shivas and many-armed Durgas (figures through the vast stockpile of Indian mythology).
¤ Basholi Style Paintings
The coming of painters from your Mughal court in the 2nd quarter in the 18th century (on account of the decline of your Mughal Empire) led to a complete transformation from the existing Basholi type. There was a wholesale ferrying in of Mughal design and fashion, from dress to architecture to the arts. The resultant was the Guler-Kangra type. The model owes a great offer to later Mughal painting, especially in its receding planes, its fondness for quasi-realistic landscape and its regular enlargement of the figures around. This late Pahari fashion 1st appeared in Guler, after which in Kangra. Raja Goverdhan Singh (1744-1773) of Guler gave shelter to quite a few artists.
Below the ambitious Sansar Chand (1775-1823) from the excellent Katoch dynasty, the Kangra College flourished happily. It's mentioned that Sansar’s enjoy to get a gaddi (a tribe of Chamba-Kangra area) maiden drove him to commission the paintings. Nagarkot or Kangra Fort, exactly where he held court for nearly 25 years, was adorned tremendously with paintings and it attracted artwork lovers from far and broad. Later he moved his funds to Nadaun and as a final point to Sujanpur Tira. The temples and palaces at each of these locations were also adorned with lovely miniatures. The 1905 earthquake damaged many of these buildings but you can still see a number of the miniature wall paintings.
The Kangra design is by significantly the most poetic and lyrical of Indian styles, says art historian J. C. Harle. His favourite subject right here is ‘the idealization of woman, in flowing sari, head half-covered having a shawl, demure but stately, passionate and shy’.
The additional complicated many-figured compositions - typically larger and horizontal in format - tend to illustrate activities from your Krishna legend - the cowherd god putting out a forest fire, subduing the serpent Kaliya, or stealing the clothing of gopis (milkmaids of Braj) even though they were bathing inside the river. The ability to manage substantial groups of figures and landscapes with towns or clusters of houses inside the distance is admirable. Aside from intricate brushwork, Kangra miniatures are characterized by the skillful use of outstanding mineral and vegetable extract colours that have an enamel-like lustre. But the strangest thing about these hill paintings is always that you’ll never uncover snow-capped mountains in them!
Analysis reveals that whilst the Kangra fashion grew to become well-entrenched in the Hills, many offshoots emerged in regions like Kullu, Nurpur, Chamba and Mandi. The Bhuri Singh Museum in Chamba is best-known for its beautiful assortment of Pahari miniatures.
¤ Fairs & Festivals in Kangra Valley
This festival is celebrated only inside the Kangra district inside the month of March/April. Clay figurines of Shiva and Parvati are worshipped by young unmarried girls who gown up in their finery and gather about a heap of grass to sing and dance. Immediately after being worshipped for 10 days, the figurines are immersed in a pond or river on the very first day of Vaisakha or Baisakhi (13th April).
The festival is held to commemorate the tragic death of a beautiful young girl called Rali. It's said that Rali was engaged to Shankar, a boy significantly younger than her, but arrived to know about it (the fact that he was younger) only around the day in the marriage. Overcome with grief and resentment, she decided to end to her life. But before doing so she called upon god to become considerate to all marriageable girls so that they uncover suitable matches. Properly, strange as it could possibly sound, marriage between a younger boy and elder girl is taboo in traditional Indian society!
Though celebrated in numerous northern states, this agrarian festival is celebrated differently in unique areas of Himachal. Generally held around the 1st of Baisakh (13th April), it really is called Bissu or Bisha. It signifies vigour and vitality and serves as being a ritual before the onset of the harvesting season.
Haryali signifies greenery, and in the Kangra Valley, it really is the festival that celebrates rain. Because fantastic rain suggests a beneficial harvest and prosperity, it really is important to keep the rain god happy. Haryali is celebrated around the first of Shravana (July 16). Some 10 days before this, seeds of five or seven grains (wheat, barley as well as the like) are mixed together and sown ceremoniously by the head from the family or the family priest in a small basket filled with earth.