Art in India

Temples as the realm of the gods, breathtaking garden tombs, and awesome stories in stone — there is much to see and learn in India.

The multireligious caves at Ellora
The multireligious caves at Ellora

The caves at Ellora are among the most impressive examples of rock-cut architecture, and are affiliated with three of India’s religious traditions: Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism.

A silk painting of sacred Buddhist images from Dunhuang
A silk painting of sacred Buddhist images from Dunhuang

A fragmentary silk painting tells us about Buddhist art along the Silk Roads, numerous Buddhist sacred icons, and the complex life of an object after its creation.

Humayun’s tomb
Humayun’s tomb

This tomb, built in 1570, is of particular cultural significance as it was the first garden-tomb on the Indian subcontinent.

Ellora caves
Ellora caves

These 34 monasteries and temples, extending over more than 2 km, were dug side by side in the wall of a high basalt cliff

Challenges, opportunities, and approaches for studying South Asian art
Challenges, opportunities, and approaches for studying South Asian art

The diverse objects from South Asia that fill the world’s museums and are valued as important works of art can sometimes be daunting to teach and study.

Bodh Gaya: The Site of the Buddha’s Enlightenment
Bodh Gaya: The Site of the Buddha’s Enlightenment

Bodh Gaya is the place where the Buddha attained enlightenment—over millennia it has been reconstructed and reimagined.

Rajarajesvara temple, Tanjavur
Rajarajesvara temple, Tanjavur

At 216 feet high, the Rajarajesvara temple is a sight to behold.

An Indus Seal
An Indus Seal

A lord and beasts from the third millennium B.C.E.

The Cave of Shiva at Elephanta
The Cave of Shiva at Elephanta

The many forms of Shiva at Elephanta island.

Durga Slays the Buffalo Demon at Mamallapuram
Durga Slays the Buffalo Demon at Mamallapuram

The great goddess Durga slays the buffalo demon Mahishasura in a 7th century rock-cut temple in Mamallapuram, India.

Shore Temple, Mamallapuram
Shore Temple, Mamallapuram

A temple with three shrines, this majestic complex faces the sea and features a rich sculptural program.