I must start with a confession. While I love the temples at Halebidu in the South Indian state of Karnataka, I really have very little clue about the carvings.
I remember the trip pretty well though. It was one of those trips that we used to take on the weekends when I was doing my MBA, oh so many, many years ago. When the world was a younger and more innocent place. Or so we'd all like to believe.
Actually, I don't think that the world ever was an innocent place. And, most certainly not since we started to record history. The Myth of the Golden Age is just that - a myth. Nostalgia. Selective memory.
What I do remember from this trip is, that we got to the temple in the lateafternoon. And, I fell in love with it. The carvings are fantastic. Brilliant. Shooting the temple and the carvings in black & white is like a dream come true . I said it then, and I will say it again, I could spend a week in Halebidu shooting the temple in various lighting conditions.
For those who are interested in a little bit of history, here's a little bit of stuff that I gleaned from the Internet, that wonderful source of information. Halebidu was the capital of the Hoysala Empire, after Belur. The temple itself is considered to be a masterpiece of Hoysala architecture. It has twin Shiva temples, on a "raised platform", each of which contain a Shive Lingam. Behind is a statue of Surya, or the sun.
And that is the beauty of this temple. The carvings, with their history and mythology are fascinating in themselves. For me, photographically, this place is a gem. The photographic possibilities are endless. And this, in itself, is sufficient reason for me to want to go there again. This is the stuff that dreams and memories are made of. Places visited, desires (unfulfilled), to return. And yet, I would love to go there again. I really, really would.