Views From the Black Mountain: The Rock-Cut Mahavihara at Kanheri/Krishnagiri

Views From the Black Mountain: The Rock-Cut Mahavihara at Kanheri/Krishnagiri

  • 29 Aug
    2022

    Buddhist Aesthetics

    Pia Brancaccio

Views From the Black Mountain: The Rock-Cut Mahavihara at Kanheri/Krishnagiri

The Buddhist complex of Kanheri/Krishnagiri (Black Mountain) in Mumbai, is the largest and longest lasting cave monastery in Western Deccan. It comprises of over one hundred caves and inscriptions spanning a thousand years, from the beginning of the Common Era to the 11th century. A thorough re-examination of archaeological and artistic evidence from the site indicates that the Black Mountain monastery, often overlooked, had become in the last phase of activity a major religious center with far reaching connections across the Buddhist world. The Sri Krishnagiri Maharaja Mahavihara, as the monastery was called in the Rastrakuta epigraphs, was well connected to Buddhist esoteric circuits and entertained exchanges with the mahaviharas of North India, the Himalayan regions and possibly Southeast Asia.

Duration -

August 29, 2022

Timing: 6:30 - 7:30 pm IST

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Pia Brancaccio

Pia Brancaccio

Pia Brancaccio is Professor of Art History at Drexel University in Philadelphia, USA. She completed her Ph.D. in South Asian Art and Archaeology at the Universita’ degli Studi di Napoli l’Orientale in Italy. Her research focuses on early Buddhist art in South Asia, with a special focus on the ancient regions of Gandhara and the Western Deccan. She is currently working on a research and documentation project on the Buddhist caves at Kanheri , and is finishing a manuscript on Buddhist Monumentality. Her publications include the volumes The Buddhist Caves at Aurangabad: Transformations in Art and Religion (Brill Publishers, 2010); Living Rock: Buddhist, Hindu and Jain Cave Temples in Western Deccan (Marg, 2013), and Gandharan Buddhism: Archaeology, Art and Text co-edited with Kurt Behrendt (UBC Press, 2006), in addition to numerous articles in festschriften, conference proceedings and academic journals (Ars Orientalis, Archives of Asian Art, East and West, South Asian Studies, Hualin International Journal of Buddhist Studies).