From Royal City to Island Citadel – The Architectural Heritage of Mysuru and Srirangapatna
A captivating illustrated overview of Mysuru and Srirangapatna's diverse built heritage
January 16, 2024
In this illustrated talk, to coincide with the launch of the new Deccan Heritage Foundation guidebook Mysuru Srirangapatna, George Michell, one of the authors and a Co-Founder of the DHF, will discuss the diverse built legacy of the Wadiyars and Tipu Sultan. Despite the vagaries of history over the last 200 years, much of this unique architectural heritage is well preserved; but some of it is neglected or threatened by modern development. Hopefully, the guidebook will contribute to its greater appreciation and, ultimately, protection.
Michell begins his talk with the fabulous Mysore Palace in the middle of the city, the destination of almost all visitors, and its surrounding royal shrines, some with important mural paintings. He then conducts the audience on a tour of Mysuru to admire the Indo-Saracenic and Neoclassical monuments built by the Wadiyars and the British. These range from palaces, hospitals, civic buildings, and educational institutions to pavilions marking the principal road intersections. He then considers the bungalow type recreational pavilions and clubs, and the Mughal layout of the Brindavan Gardens. From Mysuru, Michell travels to Chamundi Hill and then to Srirangapatna to look at the great temples erected there in the traditional southern Indian style. He also looks at the vestiges of what was the greatest fortified citadel in this part of India at the time. The talk concludes with a visit to the garden palace of Tipu, with its unique murals, and the imposing domed mausoleum that Tipu built for his parents, in which he too came to be interred.
Dr George Michell is an architectural historian who has worked extensively in the Deccan region, beginning some 50 years ago with a doctoral thesis on the Early Chalukya temples of Badami. His collaborative publications with Dr John M. Fritz include Hampi Vijayanagara, the popular guidebook issued by the Deccan Heritage Foundation. Michell’s most recent publication is the profusely illustrated Temples of Deccan India, Hindu and Jain.