Ground plan of the Kolaramma Temple, Kolar (KA).‘Ground Plan of the Ancient Temple of Coll Amma at Colar. 1807
Medium: Pen and ink on paper
Pen-and-ink and watercolour plan of the Kollarama Temple at Kolar in Karnataka. This plan is taken from an album of 156 drawings (185 folios) chiefly of architecture and sculpture in S. India, dated 1803-08. The drawing depict specimens of architecture mainly from Kolar, Sravana Belagola, Conjeeveram and Shimoga and sculpture from Halebid, Amritapura and various Jain monuments. Some drawings are by MacKenzie himself, others by his assistant surveyors and draftsmen, including H. Hamilton and J. Newman.
Kolar, previously known as Kuvala-pura, was the capital of the Ganga dynasty who ruled in many parts of Karnataka until the 10th century. It was successively occupied by the Cholas, the Hoysala and the Vijayanagara rulers and later changed hands from the Marathas to the English and then the Mysore kings.
The ancient Kollarama Temple was renovated by Rajendra Chola around 1040 AD. It is built in the Dravidian or south Indian style. The temple stands in a walled courtyard lined with a colonnaded portico. The east gateway is richly-carved with scrollwork and volutes containing mythological figures. The sanctuary is roofed by a pyramidal tower with a vaulted roof and has pilastered walls with inscriptions. The temple is a centre of Shakti worship, a cult of ancient origins of the divine creative force of the goddess. The deity in the sanctuary was Mahishasuramardini, known as Kolaramma. This had replaced the original image of Kolarammma. The image has been replaced again by Saptamatrika figures.