Cave paintings

I thought the cave paintings at Peche Merle in the Lot were old but not so much compared to these-


Banksy has been around longer than you think…

This is a good programme

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There’s so much speculation about Neolithic cave painings and other artefacts, but we probably understand very litttle of it. A healthy and fresh (except it’s now been around been around for quite a long time is Timothy Taylor (1996) The Prehistory of Sex: Four Million Years of Human Sexual Culture that deconstructs the Sixties origins of Earth Goddess culture. He’s very good on so-called ‘neolithic virgins’ , pointing out that the so-called Venus of Willendorf is obviously post-menopausal (I own an exact copy) whereas many ivory Venuses from Northern Europe resemble dildoes!

In other words, we are too far away from these people’s beliefs to do little more than speculate.

However, this much I do know, having taught drawing and visited the caves at Peche Merle. The makers of these images could draw very well, and there are many large lines, like the sinuous back of an antelope that instantly told me that their creators were boldly and confidently drawing from the shoulder, rather than more tentatively from the wrist. A moment of communion with the distant past.

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I can see the wild pig – that’s quite clear – I know what I’m looking for, but what does a human-animal hybrid look like? There are 3 of them here but I can’t see them! What am I looking for? Are they big, small, stick-like?

Oh dear… I’m a complete failure :frowning:… and yet I’ve always been able to clearly see all sorts of things in the dark, velvet flocked wallpaper often found in chinese restaurants :wink:

Five bottle of Tsingtao will do that to a person.

:rofl: nope… stone-cold sober… and I can still “see” all sorts of things in the world around us… which aren’t really there… my imagination runs riot at times… :wink: :wink:

Today’s trivia fact: It’s called “pareidolia”.

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I must tell OH there is an official reason he can mistake a clump of weeds for a person/sanglier/whatever…

He and I are a well-matched pair, each as daft as the other … :wink: :wink: :wink:

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They’re symbolic representations, not portraits! Think, ‘two legs not four’.

This is the same photo from another publication (Nature) with the human applied ‘paint’ emphasized in dark red. The 3 human-animal hybrids are arrowed.

There are hand prints as well somewhere in the cave painting.