A raw material is made into any thing. For example the dry rice is boiled and consumed as food. The iron is heated to make iron things such as chair, table etc. The same way these ordinary rocks in Mamallpuram lane been transformed by the pallavas into beautiful sculptures and monuments which are beauty to a place. This shows the skills of the pallava craftsmen. The other marvels in and around Mamallapuram are Trimurti cave, Kodikkal Mandapam, Replica of Arjuna’s Penance, Ramanuja Mandapam, Adivaraha Temple, Krishna’s Butter Ball, Koneri cane, Pancha Pandava Mandapam and Sthalasayana Perumal temple.
This rock cut came has three cells which are dedicated to the Hindu Trinity. This is located to the north - east of Arjuna’s penance. There is no portico in front. The figure of Lord Shiva, a Shivalinga, is portrayed. The second cell has two gate keepers at the entrance. There is a carving of a god which some cell it Skanda whereas others call it Lord Brahma. The third cell is dedicated to Goddess Durga who is shown stamping the beheaded Mahishasura’s head. There is a minor - rock cut zoo to the east of Trimurti cane. The zoo carvings are inscribed with an elephant, a calf, a monkey and a peacock.
This has a rectangular shape and it lies south west of Trimurthi cane. There are two maiden door - keepers on the entrance one with a sowed and the other with a bow. The centre is bare. There is a belief that this rock - cut shrine was dedicated to goddess Durga.
REPLICA OF ARJUNA’S PENANCE
This is situated to the south of Krishna Mandapam. Sculptors tried to present a replica of Arjuna’s penance. This lies incomplete but gives a reflection and dedication of the pallava artists. To the south of this replica lies a three celled rectangular mandapam known as Dharamaraja Mandapam. The sculptures in this Mandapam have been scraped off.
Around Mahishasura Mardini Mandapam there are some interesting Mandapams. One of them is Ramanuja Mandapam. It is on the way to the light house which is led by a narrow path. This mandapam is well finished and has three chambers in it. This was earlier dedicated to Lord Shiva. The Vaishnavas, followers of Lord Vishnu wanted to build a Vishnu Temple and so they destroyed this Ramanuja Mandapam is what said about its destruction.
This lies to the south west of the Mahishasura Mandapam. This has both historic and artistic value. The entrance has two gate keeper sculptures whereas inside is the portrayal of Lord Vishnu in the form of Varaha. Here we find the ten incarnations of Lord Vishnu insulted and the 9th one is said to be Lord Buddha. The northern wall has the Portrayal of Lord Shiva receiving river Ganga to his hair locks. Nearby is a splendid sculpture of simha Vishnu seated on a thrown and his beautiful queens standing on both sides. On the eastern wall is the inscription of Goddess, Mahalakshmi, seated on a lotus flower surrounded by her beautiful maidens and two elephants in the backdrop pouring water in her. There are also two figures of the Pallava kings and their names inscribed on top. This is the only pallava monument where worship takes place. This temple is important because it has the best sculptures of gods and kings generally it is closed except for special occasions.
KRISHNA’S BUTTER BALL
There are two rock-out cane temples near a hillock opposite to the river koneri. One temple hare fine cells which is almost a completed architecture. The gate keepers of an impressive carriage and smooth surroundings are the only specialties. There are also two unfinished Mandapams nearly. The sculpture museum is located to the south of Mamallapuram bus stand and preserves about 3000 sculptures made by local artisans with the help of wood, metal brass and cement. The college of traditional Art and Architecture has an association with this museum which helped in the production of many sculptors. The Yamini Krishnamurti Art museum is a little museum is a little museum which is opposite to Arjuna’s penance. One can find few sculptures preserved here.