Early Artists

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There’s a good article on Smithsonian about cave art. According to the article,

“The oldest sculpture of a human being is so small it could be hidden in your fist. Carved out of mammoth ivory, the 40,000-year-old figurine clearly represents a woman, with ballooning breasts and elaborately carved genitalia.

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“The discovery of the “Venus of Hohle Fels”—named by Conard for the cave where it was found—made news around the world. Headlines called the busty statuette “prehistoric porn.” But the Venus renews a serious scholarly debate that has flared now and then since Stone Age figurines—including a waterfowl, lions and mammoths—were first discovered early last century at Hohle Fels and nearby caves. Were these literal representations of the surrounding world? Or artworks created to express emotions or abstract ideas?”

To find out, read the entire article at Smithsonian: The Cave Art Debate.

Also on Smithsonian, there’s another article about an early artist’s studio that sounded interesting:

“Call it an early artist’s studio or a primitive chemist’s lab: Last week scientists announced the discovery of a 100,000-year-old paint-processing workshop in a cave in South Africa, where early humans stored paint mixtures in shell containers. The finding demonstrates that our ancestors had some basic understanding of chemistry and a capacity for long-term planning at this early point in our species’ history, the researchers reported in Science.”

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Read more about it at Smithsonian: The Earliest Known Artist’s Studio.

Even better, check this out: Ancient Women Artists May Be Responsible for Most Cave Art

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