Candi Penataran

high-definition creative commons photographs from Candi Penataran, a Hindu temple complex in East Java with many fine reliefs, together with further information.

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Candi Penataran

One of the finest examples of Hindu architecture in Java, Candi Penataran is located around 10km north of Blitar in the low foothills of Mount Kelud.

From an inscription in the grounds it appears it was first founded in 1194 by King Srengga, who ruled duing the Kediri Period. It also mentions that the temple was visited by King Hayum Wuruk who ruled a few centuries later, between 1350 and 1389 CE.

The temple is again mentioned in 15th century Sundanese chronicles as a place of learning. The temple seems to have been in continuous development then from the 12th to the 15th centuries, when the Majapahit kingdom fell.

It is laid out in three walled courts, with the entrance at the north-west, and the main temple at the south-east.

1. Forecourt

The forecourt has a number of foundational remains, and includes one remarkable set of reliefs of Javanese folk stories. The entrance is guarded by a pair of dwarapalas before a small staircase, which leads into the complex proper.

On the left of the entrance is Bale Agung, which is notable for having a nāga sculpture running round the whole building, but only the foundation remains.

01 Entrance

01 Entrance

02 Dwarapala

02 Dwarapala

03 Dwarapala

03 Dwarapala

04 Bale Agung

04 Bale Agung

05 View across the Lawns

05 View across the Lawns

06 Stone Remains

06 Stone Remains

07 Marker Stones

07 Marker Stones

08 Off-Balance Stones

08 Off-Balance Stones

09 View of Complex

09 View of Complex

 

Panoramas

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Pendopo and Reliefs

In the middle of the forecourt there is a pendopo, which it has been suggested, may have been used for sacrificial offerings, before entering deeper into the complex. Only the foundation remains, but it has a remarkable set of reliefs running round the building, which illustrate the Javanese folk stories of Bubhuksah and Akagang Gagang on the south and east sides; and starting at the west and running south is the story of Sri Tanjung, a faithful wife wrongly accused of adultery.

010 Pendopo and Reliefs

010 Pendopo and Reliefs

011 Pendopo from South

011 Pendopo from South

Story of Bubhuksah and Akagang Gagang

012 Pendopo Relief

012 Pendopo Relief

013 Pendopo Relief

013 Pendopo Relief

014 Pendopo Relief

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025 Pendopo Relief

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027 Pendopo Relief

027 Pendopo Relief

028 Naga in Center

028 Nāga along the Wall

029 Pendopo Relief

029 Pendopo Relief

030 Pendopo Relief

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043 Naga in Center

043 Nāga along the Wall

044 Pendopo Relief

044 Pendopo Relief

045 Pendopo Relief

045 Pendopo Relief

046 Pendopo Relief

046 Pendopo Relief

047 Pendopo Relief

047 Pendopo Relief

048 Pendopo Relief

048 Pendopo Relief

049 Pendopo Relief

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050 Pendopo Relief

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052 Pendopo Relief

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053 Pendopo Relief

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054 Pendopo Relief

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055 Pendopo Relief

055 Pendopo Relief

056 Naga at Corner

056 Naga at Corner

Story of Sri Tanjung

057 Pendopo Relief

057 Pendopo Relief

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072 Naga Staircase

072 Naga Staircase

073 Pendopo Relief

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075 Pendopo Relief

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076 Pendopo Relief

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077 Pendopo Relief

Candra Sengkala (Ganesh Temple)

This temple, which is at the southernmost point of the forecourt, is dated to 1291 Saka Era (1369 CE), and is often used as the symbol for the whole complex. It is also known as the Brawijaya Temple. The entrance to the sanctum, where sits the Ganesha statue, is facing north-west. On the other sides there are false doorways, and above each is a kāla head protecting the entrance. Outside there is a statue of Gayatri Rajapatni standing on a lotus on one side, and an unidentified figure on the other side.

078 Candra Sengkala from West

078 Candra Sengkala from West

079 Candra Sengkala from South-West

079 Candra Sengkala from South-West

080 Candra Sengkala from South-East

080 Candra Sengkala from South-East

081 Candra Sengkala from North-East

081 Candra Sengkala from North-East

082 Candra Sengkala Entrance

082 Candra Sengkala Entrance

083 Ganesha

083 Ganesha

084 Temple Date

084 Temple Date

085 South-East Kala

085 South-East Kala

086 South-West Kala

086 South-West Kala

087 Gayatri Rajapatni

087 Gayatri Rajapatni

088 Unknown Figure

088 Unknown Figure

089 Gayatri from Side

089 Gayatri from Side

2. Middle Court

090 Dwarapala

090 Dwarapala

091 Dwarapala

091 Dwarapala

092 Dwarapala

092 Dwarapala

093 Dwarapala

093 Dwarapala

094 View of Complex

094 View of Complex from 3rd Terrace of Main Temple

Nāga Temple

The temple is so-called from the large intertwining nāga that runs round the temple, and which is being held up by the kings portrayed on each side. The foundation measures approx. 5m x 6.5m and stretches to a present height of 5m, though it appears the topmost floor is now missing. There are medallions on each side of the temple, except the front.

095 Naga and Main Temples

095 Nāga and Main Temples

096 Naga Temple

096 Naga Temple

097 Naga Temple Entrance

097 Nāga Temple Entrance

098 Naga Temple from North-East

098 Nāga Temple from North-East

099 Naga Temple from South-East

099 Nāga Temple from South-East

10 Naga Temple from South-West

10 Nāga Temple from South-West

101 Corner of Naga Temple

101 Corner of Nāga Temple

3. Innermost Court

The innermost court contains the main temple in the complex, still in fairly good condition, though the top floor is on the ground to the left of the temple, and only partly reconstructed. There is a statue of Bhairawa in front of the temple, and dwarapalas guard the two staircases which lead to the terrace.

Around the base of the temple are alternating reliefs and medallions. The reliefs illustrate the Rāmāyana story, while the medallions show animals. On the first terrace there are reliefs telling the Krishnāyana story. Both sets of reliefs are distinctive as being influenced by the representations in the wayang puppetry. Only the base of the 3rd level is in place, and has some fine representations of the winged lion motif. The rest of the building is in a partly reconstructed state to the north of the temple.

102 Dwarapala

102 Dwarapala

103 Dwarapala

103 Dwarapala

104 Temple from North-West

104 Temple from North-West

105 Temple from South-East

105 Temple from South-East

106 Bhairawa

106 Bhairawa

107 Skulls and Date

107 Skulls and Date

108 Dwarapal and Stairway

108 Dwarapal and Stairway

109 Dwarapala

109 Dwarapala

110 Dwarapala from Behind

110 Dwarapala from Behind

111 Corner Section

111 Corner Section

112 Ramayana Reliefs

112 Ramayana Reliefs

113 Ramayana Reliefs

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178 Medallion

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193 Krishnayana Reliefs

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244 Base on 3rd Level

244 Base on 3rd Level

245 View of Stairway and Reliefs

245 View of Stairway and Reliefs

246 Winged Lions

246 Winged Lions

247 Winged Lions

247 Winged Lions

248 Winged Lions

248 Winged Lions

249 Winged Lions

249 Winged Lions

250 Winged Lions

250 Winged Lions

251 Winged Lions

251 Winged Lions

252 Winged Lions

252 Winged Lions

253 Winged Lions

253 Winged Lions

254 Winged Lions

254 Winged Lions

255 3rd Terrace Building Parts

255 3rd Terrace Building Parts

256 3rd Terrace Building Parts

256 3rd Terrace Building Parts

257 3rd Terrace Building Parts

257 3rd Terrace Building Parts

258 3rd Terrace Building Parts

258 3rd Terrace Building Parts

Temple Inscription and other Buildings

259 King Srengga's Palah Inscription

259 King Srengga's Palah Inscription

260 Side Temple

260 Side Temple

261 Pond

261 Pond

262 Pond

262 Pond

263 Pond

263 Pond

264 Pond

264 Pond

 

Photographs by Anandajoti Bhikkhu

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