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About Omthara Kala Kuteera
Om (Aum) is the ‘cosmic sound’ sacred to all Hindus and to the Vedic culture. Thara (Tara) is the ‘mother Goddess’ venerated in Hinduism, Buddhism and other cultures. Kala means ‘art’ in Sanskrit. Kuteera means a ‘hermitage’ in Sanskrit.
Picture a place where one can go to experience the variegated culture, religions, and traditions of India; from its ancient roots to its modern times. That is the vision of Omthara Kala Kuteera. Although only a very small fraction of this vision has taken shape as of now, the environs of Omthara Kala Kuteera will give the visitor a glimpse into the future of this place.
India’s culture and spirituality is depicted visually in the form of art of various forms; from sculptures in stone, metal, wood and stucco, to paintings made of oil & vegetable dyes.
The structure of Omthara Kala Kuteera is itself a work of art. With soaring ceilings, beautiful cornices, decorative beams, grand arches, statuesque columns, multilevel porticos, grand staircases, massive doors, circular rooms, curved granite walls, multilevel floors, the structure of Omthara Kala Kuteera, even without the art work in it, is a pleasure to behold.
Art from different regions of India adorn the walls and halls of Omthara Kala Kuteera. Serpentine stone and Sandstone sculptures from Orissa, Bronze and Wooden sculptures from Tamil Nadu, large Frescoes of vegetable and oil paints from Bihar & Orissa, Marble designs from Rajastan, oil paintings from Kerala, and much more make Omthara Kala Kuteera what it is.
This is the main building dedicated to Lord Vishnu, and is therefore called ‘Vishnu Dhama’ (abode of Lord Vishnu). Each work of art in Vishnu Dhama has a story to tell. One can spend hours learning about the story behind each work of art.
For instance the columns and arches of the main entrance of Vishnu Dhama are thematically designed after Lord Vishnu’s four Chaturdhamas (four abodes). The four abodes are Rameswaram (Lord Rama), Puri (Lord Jagannath), Dwaraka (Lord Krishna), and Badarinath (Lord Narayana).
At the top of the stairs at the main entrance is Rama Rajya. Embellishing an entire wall, carved in stone, there is the life story of Lord Rama, including his birth on earth, his Vanavasa (life in the forest), abduction of Sita, defeat of Ravana, Sri Rama Pattabhishekha (Lord Rama’s coronation) etc.
Carved into the panels of the massive main doors of Vishnu Dhama are images from the auspicious celestial marriages of Meenakshi Kalyana, Laskshmi Kalyana, Saraswati Kalyana, Srinivasa Kalyana, Rukmini Kalyana, and Shanmukha Kalyana. Likewise, carved into the panels of similar large doors on the upper level are Ashta Lakshmi images (eight forms of Goddess Lakshmi).
Upon entering the main foyer of Vishnu Dhama, you will find Srinivasa Sannidhi. The entire story of Lord Venkateshwara of Tirupathi is carved in serpentine stone on the walls and arches.
In an adjoining space, adorning the walls, you will see beautiful stucco sculptures bringing to life some of the stories of Lord Krishna, including a captivating artwork of Geethopadesha (imparting the knowledge of Geetha) and Vishwaroopa (cosmic universal form of the Lord).
Levels above and below the main entrance have numerous artwork of Lord Vishnu, including a room that is adorned ceiling to floor, and wall to wall, with action sculptures form Dashavathara (the ten main incarnations of Lord Vishnu).
As is customary in all Hindu temples, a pantheon of other gods and goddesses adorn the Vishnu Dhama. One hundred and eight dancing poses from Lord Shiva’s Thandava Nrithya (Lord Shiva’s cosmic dance) is shown along with corresponding Sanskrit verses for each one of them, on the pillars of Vishnu Dhama.
Under construction right behind Vishnu Dhama, is a much larger structure that is being dedicated to Lord Shiva and his consort Shakthi (Parvati).