Author: Bruno David
Publisher: Thames & Hudson
Release Date: 2017-02-28
An archaeological exploration of the mysterious world of cave art through the ages Deep underground, some of humanity’s earliest artistic endeavors have lain untouched for millennia. The dark interiors of caves, wherever they may be found, seem to have had a powerful draw for ancient peoples, who littered the cave floors with objects they had made. Later, they adorned cave walls with sacred symbols and secret knowledge, from the very first abstract symbols and handprints to complex and vivid arrangements of animals and people. Often undisturbed for many tens of thousands of years, these were among the first visual symbols that humans shared with each other, though they were made so long ago that we have entirely forgotten their meaning. However, as archaeologist Bruno David reveals, caves decorated more recently may help us to unlock their secrets. David tells the story of this mysterious world of decorated caves, from the oldest known painting tools to the magnificent murals of the European Ice Age. Showcasing the most astounding discoveries made in more than 150 years of archaeological exploration, Cave Art explores the creative achievements of our remotest ancestors and what they tell us about the human past.
Author: Paul Bahn
Publisher: Thames & Hudson
Release Date: 2017-07-11
Genre: Social Science
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.
Author: David Lewis-Williams
Publisher: Thames & Hudson
Release Date: 2004-04-17
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.
Author: Paul G. Bahn
Publisher: Frances Lincoln
Release Date: 2012-02-21
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.
Author: John Boardman
Release Date: 2006
Divides the ancient world into three broad climatic categories to offer insight into the way artists addressed key environmental challenges, in a lavishly illustrated and captioned reference that includes coverage of each global region and religion.
Author: Jean-Marie Chauvet
Publisher: Harry N Abrams Incorporated
Release Date: 1996-03-30
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.
Author: Jean Clottes
Publisher: Phaidon Press
Release Date: 2010-03-31
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.
From Abgig to Zawiyet Umm el-Rakham, this book will appeal to tourists, museum visitors, armchair travelers, and scholars. All the major archaeological sites of Egypt and Sudan are described in this guide.
Author: Paul G. Bahn
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Release Date: 1998
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
Author: Jean Clottes
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Release Date: 2016-04-25
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.
Author: Paul G. Bahn
Publisher: Univ of California Press
Release Date: 1997
Some of the oldest art in the world is the subject of this riveting and beautiful book. Paul Bahn and Jean Vertut explore carved objects and wall art discoveries from the Ice Age, covering the period from 300,000 B.P. to 10,000 B.P., and their collaboration marks a signal event for archaeologists and lay readers alike. Utilizing the most modern analytical techniques in archaeology, Bahn presents new accounts of Russian caves only recently opened to foreign specialists; the latest discoveries from China and Brazil; European cave finds at Cosquer, Chauvet, and Covaciella; and the recently discovered sites in Australia. He also studies sites in Africa, India, and the Far East. Included are the only photographic images of many caves that are now closed to protect their fragile environments. A separate chapter in the book examines art fakes and forgeries and relates how such deceptions have been exposed. The beliefs and preoccupations of Paleolithic peoples resonate throughout this book: the importance of the hunt and the magic and shamanism surrounding it, the recording of the seasons, the rituals of sex and fertility, the cosmology and associated myths. Yet enigmas and mysteries emerge as well, particularly as new analytical techniques raise new questions and cast doubt on our earlier suppositions. A comprehensive, up-to-date analysis of all that has been discovered about Ice Age art, Bahn and Vertut's book offers a visually rich link with the past.
Author: Bertrand David
Release Date: 2014-04-01
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.