Agra’s Arches

This montage represents the myriad cultural and architectural influences evident across the North Indian city of Agra, usually known more for the Taj Mahal than anything else. This motley collection of arches photographed at the city’s various historic sites and structures shows the inherent human creativity in attempting to span spaces and openings with simple materials like stone, or more contemporary ones like brick and mortar. It is also an attempt to take the focus away from the ‘monument’; instead showcasing the beauty in its structural details.

1. Akbar’s Tomb at Sikandra; 2. Looking from Itmad-ud-daula’s Tomb to Gateway; 3. Boundary wall at Akbar’s Tomb at Sikandra; 4. Myriam’s Tomb at Sikandra; 5. Marble jaali at Salim Chishti’s Dargah at Fatehpur Sikri; 6. Marble jaali at Salim Chishti’s Dargah at Fatehpur Sikri; 7. Apse and Altar at St.Paul’s Church; 8. Radha Soamibagh Temple with two-cusped arches (Gothic influence); 9. Looking from Itmad-ud-daula’s Tomb to Gateway; 10. Platform ruins at Mehtab Bagh on the banks of the Yamuna River; 11. Narthex at St.Paul’s Church; 12. Entrance portico of Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception with distinct Greek influences; 13. Inlaid arch and dome profile inside Akbar’s Tomb at Sikandra; 14. Akbar’s Church with a distinct Greek temple pediment, housed next to the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in the Roman Catholic ComplexThis trip was made possible through a Preservation Fellowship by Global Heritage Fund during my doctoral study at Cornell University, Ithaca, NY.

© Ashima Krishna
Photo taken at Agra in 2012

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