The chennakeshava temple was built by King Vishnuvardhana in 1117 AD and were completed using the pot stone. The temple was built in Hoysala architecture. UNESCO has proposed the temple site for designation as a World Heritage site.
The pillars inside the hall are an attraction and the some of the pillars are said to have revolved on its ball bearings.Each pillar is unique and each one is studied in detail by archeologists and historians.A rich diversity exists in their style. The detail and the craftsmanship surpasses even some of the modern technology.
The historians have stated that the king might have employed craftsmen from different regions to complete the work as some of the designs resembles the chola architecture ( another dynasty to who ruled part of south India).
A Rayagopura, built during the days of Vijayanagar empire, crowns the main entrance to the complex. The Chennakesava temple stands in the center of the temple complex.
The temple has three entrances, the doorways have highly decorated sculptures of doorkeepers. Craftsmen built the Chennakesava temple with a simple Hoysala plan but with extraordinary detail.The main entrance to the complex is crowned by a Rajagopura (superstructure over entrance) built during the days of the Vijayanagar empire.
Within the complex, the Chennakesava temple is at the centre, it is flanked by the Kappe Channigraya temple on its right, and a small Sowmyanayaki temple set slightly back. On its left, also set slightly back is the Ranganayaki temple.
The Hoysala artists, unlike many medieval artists, preferred to sign their work in the form of inscriptions. They sometimes revealed fascinating details about themselves, their families, guilds and place of origin. Stone and copper plate inscriptions provide more information about them.
The temple is located in Hassan dst of Karnataka in South india. It is 3 hours drive and approx 200 KMS from Bangalore city. There are other similar stone temples like Halebedu close to Belur.