Paleolithic and Neolithic Cave and Rock Art

The Creative Revolution
Paleolithic Cave Art
35,000 BC – 14,000 BC
Western Europe
200+ sites
Famous sites:
Chauvet , France
Lascaux, France
Altamira, Spain
Chauvet Cave, France
32,000 B.C.
Carbon 14 dating of charcoal and
animal bones established age of
Cave Art sites.
 Paint made out of charcoal , rocks and
minerals mixed with animal fat.
 Black made from charcoal or Black Hemalite
 White made from chalk.
 Yellow , red and brown made from Ocher
Why did Paleolithic Man make Cave Art?
 The paintings are believed to
have a religious purpose.
 Religious leaders known as
Shamans were painted at Les
Trois Friers and Lascaux.
 The paintings may have been
visions the Shamans had during
trances they entered into trying
to contact the spirit world during
religious ceremonies.
 The animals they painted were
the largest in their world and
NOT their main sources of food.
Ice Age Southern Europe
Ice Age: 100,000 BC – 10,000 BC
Ice Age (The earth was colder)
Chauvet Cave
Chauvet cave
Cave Bear and Leopard
Chauvet Cave
Cave Lions:
Chauvet Cave
Wooly Rhino, Bison, Mammoth
Chauvet Cave
Running Bison and Fighting Rhinos
Chauvet Cave
Aurochs: Ancestor of all Cattle
Roufignac, France 22,000 B.C.
Lascaux, France 17,000 B.C.
Hall Of Bulls
Altamira, Spain
14,000 BC
European Bison
Altamira: High Point of Cave Art
Highly Detailed
Dramatic Action
“In 20,000 years, we have
learned nothing!”
Pablo Picasso
Why were the Cave Art sites abandoned Circa
14,000 B.C.?
 Humans began building
stone temples.
 The archaeological dig at
Gobekli Tepli in Turkey
has unearthed stone
structures filled with
carvings of animals.
 Gobekli Tepli has been
dated to 11,000 B.C. The
Neolithic Age had begun.
Saharan Rock Art
8,000 BC to 4,000 BC
Saharan Desert 2010 AD
The Saharan 8,000 BC
The Saharan was a Steppe
(Savannah) in the Ice Age.
Neolithic Rock Art
8,000 BC- 2,000 BC
People and domestic animals appear
Hippos: Tassili d’ Ajjer
Saharan Desert
Elephant: Libya
Giraffes and Elephants
Tassili d’ Ajjer
Herding Domestic Cattle
Tassili d’ Ajjer
African villagers
Tassili d’ Ajjer
Tassili d’ Ajjer: Villagers, Jellyfish,
Domestic Goat, Man riding Camel
Cave of Swimmers, Egypt
Tassili d’ Ajjer: Herding
Domestic Camels

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