What Is Paleolithic Art?

Cave Paintings and the Dawn of Human Creativity

Author: Jean Clottes

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 022618806X

Category: Art

Page: 192

View: 1532

DOWNLOAD NOW »

Was it a trick of the light that drew our Stone Age ancestors into caves to paint in charcoal and red hematite, to watch the heads of lions, likenesses of bison, horses, and aurochs in the reliefs of the walls, as they flickered by firelight? Or was it something deeper—a creative impulse, a spiritual dawn, a shamanistic conception of the world efflorescing in the dark, dank spaces beneath the surface of the earth where the spirits were literally at hand? In this book, Jean Clottes, one of the most renowned figures in the study of cave paintings, pursues an answer to this “why” of Paleolithic art. While other books focus on particular sites and surveys, Clottes’s work is a contemplative journey across the world, a personal reflection on how we have viewed these paintings in the past, what we learn from looking at them across geographies, and what these paintings may have meant—what function they may have served—for their artists. Steeped in Clottes’s shamanistic theories of cave painting, What Is Paleolithic Art? travels from well-known Ice Age sites like Chauvet, Altamira, and Lascaux to visits with contemporary aboriginal artists, evoking a continuum between the cave paintings of our prehistoric past and the living rock art of today. Clottes’s work lifts us from the darkness of our Paleolithic origins to reveal, by firelight, how we think, why we create, why we believe, and who we are.

Cave Paintings and the Human Spirit

The Origin of Creativity and Belief

Author: David S. Whitley

Publisher: Prometheus Books

ISBN: 1615920560

Category: Science

Page: N.A

View: 4254

DOWNLOAD NOW »

The magnificent prehistoric art discovered in caves throughout France and Spain raises many questions about early human culture. What do these superbly rendered paintings of horses, bison, and enigmatic human figures and symbols mean? How can we explain the sudden flourishing of artistic creativity at such a high level? And in what ways does this artwork reflect the underlying belief system, worldview, and life of the people who created it? In this fascinating discussion of ancient art and religion, Dr David S Whitley -- one of the world's leading experts on cave paintings--guides the reader in an exploration of these intriguing questions, while sharing his firsthand experiences in visiting these exquisite, breath-taking sites. To grasp what drove these ancient artists to create these masterpieces, and to understand the origin of myth and religion, as Whitley explains, is to appreciate what makes us human. Moreover, he broadens our understanding of the genesis of creativity and myth by proposing a radically new and original theory that weds two seemingly warring camps from separate disciplines. On the one hand, archaeologists specialising in prehistoric cave paintings have argued that the visionary rituals of shamans led to the creation of this expressive art. They consider shamanism to be the earliest known form of religion. By contrast, evolutionary psychologists view the emergence of religious beliefs as a normal expression of the human mind. In their eyes, the wild and ecstatic trances of shamans were a form of aberrant behaviour. Far from being typical representatives of ancient religion, shamans were exceptions to the normal rule of early religion. Whitley resolves the controversy by interweaving the archaeological evidence with the latest findings of cutting-edge neuroscience. He thereby rewrites our understanding of shamanism and its connection with artistic creativity, myth, and religion. Combining a colourful narrative describing Whitley's personal explorations at key archaeological sites with robust scientific research, Cave Paintings and the Human Spirit makes for engrossing reading. It provides a profound and poignant perspective on what it means to be human.

What Is Paleolithic Art?

Cave Paintings and the Dawn of Human Creativity

Author: Jean Clottes

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: 9780226266633

Category: Art, Prehistoric

Page: 192

View: 3050

DOWNLOAD NOW »

This is a journey and a personal reflection by one of the most renowned figures in cave exploration and painting. This exploration of the art, which has captivated people the world over, continues Clottes pursuit of an explanation for the why of Paleolithic cave painting, and is steeped in his thoughts about the shamanistic explanations. Clottes summarizes the history of earlier explanations of and approaches to rock art in Southwest Europe, and then takes readers on a tour to visit rock art sites and specialists in aboriginal artists and shamans around the world. He evokes a continuum between the living rock art sites to the Ice Age sites of Chauvet, Altamira, and hundreds of others. Clottes s views illuminate the animals and figures that adorn cave walls, and his deep understanding, love, and empathy that he has for the art, imagination, and spiritual world of our Ice Age ancestors is unparalleled. "

Cave Art

Author: Jean Clottes

Publisher: Phaidon Press

ISBN: 9780714857237

Category: Art

Page: 336

View: 1742

DOWNLOAD NOW »

The discovery of pre-historic decorated caves in western Europe transformed the way we think about the development of art. The earliest known evidence of human artistic endeavor, the awe-inspiring paintings, dramatic engravings and small, delicate sculptures of animals and humans found in these caves still hold a unique power and fascination, more than a century after they were first discovered. In this book, internationally renowned expert on prehistoric art Jean Clottes explores the origins of art and creativity. He takes the reader on a guided tour of 85 caves and rock shelters, many of which are not open to the public, revealing the extraordinary beauty of the works of art within them. Cave Art features more than 300 works from the Paleolithic period, made between 35,000 and 11,000 years ago, presented in geographical and chronological order.This comprehensive, accessible introduction to prehistoric art includes such spectacular works as the famous horses of Lascaux, the buffalo in the Altamira cave in Spain and the ivory carving of a woman's face found at Brassempouy in the south of France, as well as examples from less well-known sites. A wonderful range of animals is presented, from cave bears to reindeer, as well as mysterious abstract signs and schematic representations of human beings. Examples of portable art and sculpture are also included. While most of the caves described in the book are European, Cave Art also includes examples of open-air rock art made after the last ice age at sites around the world. With an unparalleled selection of images, Cave Art offers a unique guided tour of the earliest expressions of human creativity. Each work in Cave Art is illustrated by a color photograph, and accompanied by a clear, vivid explanatory text. A concise introduction tells the story of the discovery of the caves, and gives a clear outline of current knowledge, research and debate on the subject of prehistoric art. The book also includes a chronology, maps of the main caves and sites, a glossary and a list of sites that can be visited.

The Cambridge Illustrated History of Prehistoric Art

Author: Paul G. Bahn

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521454735

Category: Art

Page: 302

View: 1140

DOWNLOAD NOW »

Surveys prehistoric art throughout the world, including body art, art on rocks and walls, and objects; changes in scholarship; and what the art can reveal about early sexual, social, economic, and religious life

Prehistoric Art

The Symbolic Journey of Humankind

Author: Randall White

Publisher: Harry N. Abrams

ISBN: 9780810942622

Category: Art

Page: 240

View: 3558

DOWNLOAD NOW »

Examines prehistoric objects and images from an anthropological, rather than artistic, perspective.

The cave beneath the sea

Paleolithic images at Cosquer

Author: Jean Clottes,Jean Courtin

Publisher: Harry N. Abrams

ISBN: N.A

Category: Art

Page: 200

View: 2208

DOWNLOAD NOW »

In 1991, a professional diver named Henri Cosquer discovered a wealth of prehistoric art in a cave near Marseilles, France. The opening to the cave, once several miles inland from the Mediterranean, became submerged when the sea began to rise at the end of the last ice age, about 12,000 years ago. Since that time, no human had entered this deep cavern or seen the paintings and engravings of animals, human hands, and signs that cover the walls and ceilings until Cosquer swam cautiously up the flooded entrance passage. News of Cosquer's extraordinary find flashed around the world. The French Ministry of Culture immediately sent two eminent archaeologists, Jean Clottes and Jean Courtin, to study the cave. Assisted by teams of specialists, they carried out two diving missions to the site, in 1991 and 1992. This book describes what they found and provides the first complete photographic documentation of this incredible site, one of the major decorated caves of Europe. Because charcoal and charcoal pigment were found in such abundance at the site, and because the archaeological context was undisturbed, Cosquer is now one of the most thoroughly and firmly dated Paleolithic caves in the world. Thanks to a series of twelve radiocarbon dates, we know that the images at Cosquer were made during two different eras. The stenciled hands are extremely ancient, created about 27,000 years ago. The land animals - cold-loving plains horses, ibex, chamois, aurochs, and the huge ice-age deer called megaloceros - are some 18,500 years old. There are also marine animals, very unusual subjects in Paleolithic art: they include seals, great auks (penguin-like birds that are now extinct), and mysterious imagesthat may represent fish and jellyfish. Throughout this fascinating book, which includes notes, a full bibliography, and a glossary of 125 key terms, the Cosquer cave is discussed in relation to other prehistoric decorated caves in Europe. The authors judiciously speculate on the meaning of the ancient images and what they can tell us not only about the lost world of our remote ancestors but about the origins of mythmaking, symboling, and artmaking - in other words, of being truly human.

Cave Art

A Guide to the Decorated Ice Age Caves of Europe

Author: Paul G. Bahn

Publisher: Frances Lincoln

ISBN: 9780711232570

Category: Art

Page: 248

View: 6972

DOWNLOAD NOW »

The decorated Ice Age caves are some of mankind's greatest artistic achievements, and there is no substitute for seeing the caves themselves. There you can see the art – paintings, engravings, bas-reliefs or drawings – in its original, natural setting, and stand where the artists did 30,000–10,000 years ago. For speleologists and holidaymakers alike – indeed anyone who wants to add a visit to a cave to their itinerary – here is an essential handbook. The first guide to all the decorated Ice Age caves in Europe that are open to the public, Cave Art covers more than 50 caves in England, France, Spain, Portugal and Italy, as well as relevant museums and centres. This second edition has been fully revised and includes one additional cave and three new facsimiles.

The Palaeolithic Societies of Europe

Author: Clive Gamble

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521658720

Category: Social Science

Page: 505

View: 5823

DOWNLOAD NOW »

Clive Gamble's overview of Palaeolithic societies, building on his The Palaeolithic Settlement of Europe (1986).

The First Signs

Unlocking the Mysteries of the World's Oldest Symbols

Author: Genevieve von Petzinger

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 1476785503

Category: Art

Page: 328

View: 2944

DOWNLOAD NOW »

The First Signs is the first-ever exploration of the little-known geometric images that accompany most cave art around the world--the first indications of symbolic meaning, intelligence, and language. Join renowned archaeologist Genevieve von Petzinger on an Indiana Jones-worthy adventure from the open-air rock art sites of northern Portugal to the dark depths of a remote cave in Spain that can only be reached by sliding face-first through the mud. Von Petzinger looks past the beautiful horses, powerful bison, graceful ibex, and faceless humans in the ancient paintings. Instead, she's obsessed with the abstract geometric images that accompany them, the terse symbols that appear more often than any other kinds of figures--signs that have never really been studied or explained until now. Part travel journal, part popular science, part personal narrative, von Petzinger's groundbreaking book starts to crack the code on the first form of graphic communication. It's in her blood, as this talented scientist's grandmother served as a code-breaker at Bletchley. Discernible patterns emerge that point to abstract thought and expression, and for the first time, we can begin to understand the changes that might have been happening inside the minds of our Ice Age ancestors--offering a glimpse of when they became us.

Sacred Darkness

A Global Perspective on the Ritual use of Caves

Author: Holley Moyes

Publisher: University Press of Colorado

ISBN: 1457117509

Category: Social Science

Page: 520

View: 9747

DOWNLOAD NOW »

Caves have been used in various ways across human society but despite the persistence within popular culture of the iconic caveman, deep caves were never used primarily as habitation sites for early humans. Rather, in both ancient and contemporary contexts, caves have served primarily as ritual spaces. In Sacred Darkness, contributors use archaeological evidence as well as ethnographic studies of modern ritual practices to envision the cave as place of spiritual and ideological power and a potent venue for ritual practice. Covering the ritual use of caves in Europe, Asia, Australia, Africa, Mesoamerica, and the US Southwest and Eastern woodlands, this book brings together case studies by prominent scholars whose research spans from the Paleolithic period to the present day. These contributions demonstrate that cave sites are as fruitful as surface contexts in promoting the understanding of both ancient and modern religious beliefs and practices. This state-of-the-art survey of ritual cave use will be one of the most valuable resources for understanding the role of caves in studies of religion, sacred landscape, or cosmology and a must-read for any archaeologist interested in caves.

The First Artists: In Search of the World's Oldest Art

Author: Paul Bahn,Michel Lorblanchet

Publisher: Thames & Hudson

ISBN: 0500773920

Category: Social Science

Page: 240

View: 2330

DOWNLOAD NOW »

Two of the greatest living authorities on Ice Age art delve hundreds of thousands of years into the human past to discover the earliest works of art ever made, drawing on decades of new research Where is the world’s very first art located? When, and why, did people begin experimenting with different materials, forms, and colors? Prehistorians have long been asking these questions, but only recently have they been able to piece together the first chapter in the story of art. Overturning the traditional Eurocentric vision of our artistic origins, Paul Bahn and Michel Lorblanchet seek out the earliest art across the whole world. There are clues that even three million years ago distant human ancestors were drawn to natural curiosities that appeared representational, such as the face-like “Makapansgat cobble" from South Africa, not carved but naturally weathered to resemble a human face. In the last hundred thousand years people all over the world began to create art: the oldest known paint palettes in South Africa’s Blombos Cave, the famous Venus figures across Europe all the way to Siberia, and magnificent murals on cave walls in every continent except Antarctica. This book is the first to assess the discovery, history, and significance of these varied forms of art: the artistic impulse developed in the human mind wherever it traveled.

The Oldest Enigma of Humanity

The Key to the Mystery of the Paleolithic Cave Paintings

Author: Bertrand David,Jean-Jacques Lefrère

Publisher: Skyhorse

ISBN: 1628723939

Category: Art

Page: 176

View: 1449

DOWNLOAD NOW »

A mystery spanning thousands of years—and a compelling study of early mankind and the first sparks of human artistic creativity. Thirty thousand years ago, our prehistoric ancestors painted perfect images of animals on walls of tortuous caves, most often without any light. How was this possible? What meaning and messages did the cavemen want these paintings to convey? In addition, how did these perfect drawings come about at a time when primitive man's sole purpose was surviving? And why, some ten thousand years later, did startlingly similar animal paintings appear once again, on dark cave walls? Scholars and archaeologists have for centuries pored over these works of art, speculating and hoping to come away with the key to the mystery. No one has ever come close to elucidating the paintings’ origin and meaning—until now. Here, the stunning truth is revealed by artist Bertrand David and Professor Jean-Jacques Lefrère, giving us a new understanding of an art lost in time, explaining what had once been unexplainable, and solving the oldest enigma in humanity.

World Rock Art

Author: Jean Clottes

Publisher: J Paul Getty Museum Publications

ISBN: 9780892366828

Category: Art

Page: 140

View: 2493

DOWNLOAD NOW »

Although cave paintings from the European Ice Age have has gained considerable renown, for many people the term "rock art" remains full of mystery. Yet it refers to perhaps the oldest form of artistic endeavor, splendid examples of which exist on all continents and from all eras. Rock art stretches in time from about forty thousand to less than forty years ago and can be found from the Arctic Circle to the tip of South America, from the caves of southern France to the American Southwest. It includes animal and human figures, complex geometrical forms, and myriad mysterious markings. Illustrated in color throughout, this book provides an engaging overview of rock art worldwide. An introductory chapter discusses the discovery of rock art by the West and the importance of landscape and ritual. Subsequent chapters survey rock art sites throughout the world, explaining how the art can be dated and how it was made. The book then explores the meaning of these often enigmatic images, including the complex role they played in traditional societies. A final chapter looks at the threats posed to rock art today by development, tourism, pollution, and other dangers, and discusses current initiatives to preserve this remarkable heritage.

Lascaux

Movement, Space and Time

Author: Norbert Aujoulat

Publisher: Harry N. Abrams

ISBN: N.A

Category: Art

Page: 274

View: 2668

DOWNLOAD NOW »

A photographic and scientific tour of the cave of Lascaux, a treasure trove of ancient wall paintings that was discovered by chance in 1940, discusses what the cave reveals about the Old Stone Age and its animal world of some 18,000 years ago. 15,000 first printing.

Dawn of Art

Author: Jean-Marie Chauvet

Publisher: Harry N Abrams Incorporated

ISBN: N.A

Category: Art

Page: 135

View: 2110

DOWNLOAD NOW »

An intriguing study of the early evolution of human artistic endeavors focuses on recent discoveries in the Chauvet cave, Stone Age paintings and engravings of animals that are more than thirty thousand years old. BOMC Div. Natural Science Main.

Prehistoric art and civilization

Author: Denis Vialou

Publisher: Harry N Abrams Inc

ISBN: N.A

Category: Art

Page: 159

View: 6152

DOWNLOAD NOW »

Discusses prehistoric civilization as represented by art and artifacts of the period, including weapons and tools, architecture, cave paintings, engravings, and statues

The Mind in the Cave: Consciousness and the Origins of Art

Author: David Lewis-Williams

Publisher: Thames & Hudson

ISBN: 0500770441

Category: Art

Page: 320

View: 443

DOWNLOAD NOW »

The breathtakingly beautiful art created deep inside the caves of western Europe has the power to dazzle even the most jaded observers. Emerging from the narrow underground passages into the chambers of caves such as Lascaux, Chauvet, and Altamira, visitors are confronted with symbols, patterns, and depictions of bison, woolly mammoths, ibexes, and other animals. Since its discovery, cave art has provoked great curiosity about why it appeared when and where it did, how it was made, and what it meant to the communities that created it. David Lewis-Williams proposes that the explanation for this lies in the evolution of the human mind. Cro-Magnons, unlike the Neanderthals, possessed a more advanced neurological makeup that enabled them to experience shamanistic trances and vivid mental imagery. It became important for people to "fix," or paint, these images on cave walls, which they perceived as the membrane between their world and the spirit world from which the visions came. Over time, new social distinctions developed as individuals exploited their hallucinations for personal advancement, and the first truly modern society emerged. Illuminating glimpses into the ancient mind are skillfully interwoven here with the still-evolving story of modern-day cave discoveries and research. The Mind in the Cave is a superb piece of detective work, casting light on the darkest mysteries of our earliest ancestors while strengthening our wonder at their aesthetic achievements.

Images of the Ice Age

Author: Paul G. Bahn

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 9780199686001

Category:

Page: 600

View: 3016

DOWNLOAD NOW »

Images of the Ice Age, here in its third edition, is the most complete study available of the world's earliest imagery, presenting a fascinating account of the art of our Ice Age ancestors. Authoritative and wide-ranging, it covers not only the magnificent cave art of famous sites such as Lascaux, Altamira, and Chauvet, but also other less well-known sites around the world, and open-air and portable art. Lavishly illustrated and highly accessible,Images of the Ice Age provides a visual feast and an absorbing synthesis of this crucial aspect of human history, offering a unique opportunity to appreciate universally important works of art, many of which can neverbe accessible to the public, and which represent the very earliest evidence of artistic expression.

The Nature of Paleolithic Art

Author: R. Dale Guthrie

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 9780226311265

Category: Nature

Page: 507

View: 8194

DOWNLOAD NOW »

A richly illustrated study provides the most comprehensive representation of Paleolithic art ever published and offers a radical new way of interpreting the art and artifacts of these prehistoric cultures.