16 September 2022 – 22 January 2023
A display of photographs taken between 1857 and 1970, capturing the archaeological site of Hampi.
The Hindu kingdom Vijayanagara (meaning ‘City of Victory’) established its capital at Hampi in southern India in about 1336. Located along the banks of the Tungabhadra River, temple complexes, palaces and administrative buildings were built amongst the rugged landscape of granite boulders.
After flourishing for over 200 years, in 1565, Vijayanagara fell to a rival kingdom and Hampi was abandoned. Hampi’s ongoing religious significance and its designation as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1987 mean it continues to attract worshippers and tourists to this day.
This display provides a lens on the archaeological legacy of Hampi through our archives and the research activities that have played a role in preserving the city’s cultural heritage.
This exhibition is part of a wider programme on South Asia at the British Library and is linked to the forthcoming exhibition Early Photography and Archaeology in Western India held at CSMVS (Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya), a museum in Mumbai, India. The exhibition at CSMVS will be part of the British Council’s India/UK Together, Season of Culture.
Image: Gopura of the Virupaksha temple, Vijayanagara. Photographed by William H. Pigou in 1857. Neg 1000/10(1096) © British Library Board