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Cave Art
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ramonmercadoOffline
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PostPosted: 05-01-2006 11:21    Post subject: Cave Art Reply with quote

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Cave art: men and women each did their own thing



Analysis of stencilled handprints found on the walls of an Indonesian cave suggest that prehistoric men and women chose not to mix genders when it came to this enigmatic art form.

Experts from France's National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) looked at handprints left at the Gua Masri II cave in Indonesia, using a new computer model to determine whether the hand which made the mark was male or female.

They found that the male cave dwellers grouped their handprints in given locations and the females put their own handprints in their own areas.

"This discovery supports evidence put forward by ethnologists showing that prehistoric man had different rituals than women," Jean-Michel Chazine of France's Centre for Research and Documentation on Oceania (Credo) told AFP this week.

"The findings suggest that the female role was far more important than was previously thought," he said, venturing that women in primitive societies might have played the part of magician or shaman.

The new software is based on research that can calculate the gender of a hand's owner according to the proportionate lengths of the ring and index fingers.

These two fingers are of equal length among women but there is a big difference in their length among men.

The two Gua Masri sites, found in limestone rock in the highlands of Borneo in the 1990s by a Franco-Indonesian team, comprise hundreds of hand stencils that are believed to be between 8,000 and 20,000 years old.

CNRS archaeologists are looking at other handprints at the Pech Merle and Cosquer caves in France, at the Cueva de las Manos Pintadas in Argentina and other caves in Indonesia.

http://www.physorg.com/printnews.php?newsid=9573
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WhistlingJackOffline
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PostPosted: 05-06-2006 15:43    Post subject: Cave Art Reply with quote

There doesn't seem to be a general thread on this subject, so...

Quote:
The Times, June 05, 2006

Cave face 'the oldest portrait on record'

By Adam Sage

A DRAWING discovered by a potholer on the wall of a cave in the west of France appears to be the oldest known portrait of a human face.

The 27,000-year-old work was found by a local pensioner, Gérard Jourdy, in the Vilhonneur grotto near Angoulême.

Drawn with calcium carbonate, and using the bumps in the wall to give form to the face, it features two horizontal lines for the eyes, another for the mouth and a vertical line for the nose. “The portrait of this face is unique,” said Jean Airvaux, a researcher at the French Directorate of Cultural Affairs. “We have other drawings, but they are more recent. Here, it could be the oldest representation of a human face.”

Archaeologists are particularly interested in the Vilhonneur cave because there are several drawings, including one of a hand in cobalt blue, along with animal and human remains.

Jean-François Baratin, the regional director of archaeology in western France, said that there were only two known examples of prehistoric caves from this era containing both bones and drawings. The other is at Cussac in the Dordogne.

The discovery was made by M Jourdy in November, but kept secret until February while the site was sealed. The results of a scientific analysis were made public on Friday.

M Baratin said ribs, a thigh bone and a tibia taken from the floor of the cave had been dated by scientists in Miami, as were the drawings. These turned out to be about 11,000 years older than the renowned paintings at Lascaux in the nearby Dordogne.Michel Boutant, chairman of the local Charente department council, said: ‘The face reminded me of a Modigliani portrait.”

Copyright 2006 Times Newspapers Ltd.


Click the link for a pic Wink
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rynner2Offline
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PostPosted: 06-07-2009 08:19    Post subject: Reply with quote

A woman's touch: Prehistoric cave paintings were made by women as well as men, scientists discover
By Daily Mail Reporter
Last updated at 9:41 PM on 05th July 2009

For thousands of years, these artworks have been credited as the genius of cave men.
Scientists believed these artistic visions were dreamed up and executed by male hands.
But after more than 25,000 years, the results of a recent study have indicated prehistoric female artists also helped to create the famous 'Spotted Horses' cave mural and various others.

After re-analysing the hand stencils inside the Pech Marle and Gargas caves in France, an archaeologist from Pennsylvania State University has said that 'even a superficial examination of published photos suggested to me that there were lots of female hands there'.
Speaking to National Geographic magazine, Professor Dean Snow discussed his findings in the French caves and in the El Castillo cave in Spain.

His findings suggest the woman's role in prehistoric society was much greater than previously thought.
He said: 'I had access to lots of people of European descent who were willing to let me scan their hands as reference data.'

Snow also examined stencils in the Gargas cave - also in France - and discovered the artwork there suppported his findings in Peche Marle.
He said to the magazine: 'We don't know what the role of artists were in the Upper Paleolithic society (roughly 20,000 to 40,000 years ago) generally, but it is a step forward to be able to say that a strong majority of them were women.'

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1197680/After-25-000-years-scientists-discover-artwork-created-cave-men-AND-cave-women.html
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ramonmercadoOffline
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PostPosted: 13-02-2011 19:19    Post subject: Giant Rats Quest Leads Scientists to Ancient Face Carvings Reply with quote

Great title! The movie about it will no doubt feature live rats.

Quote:
Quest for Extinct Giant Rats Leads Scientists to Ancient Face Carvings
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/02/110211095557.htm

Grou.p of petroglyphs in Lena Hara Cave, East Timor (Credit: John Brush)

ScienceDaily (Feb. 11, 2011) — Ancient stone faces carved into the walls of a well-known limestone cave in East Timor have been discovered by a team searching for fossils of extinct giant rats.

The team of archaeologists and palaeontologists were working in Lene Hara Cave on the northeast tip of East Timor.

"Looking up from the cave floor at a colleague sitting on a ledge, my head torch shone on what seemed to be a weathered carving," CSIRO's Dr Ken Aplin said.

"I shone the torch around and saw a whole panel of engraved prehistoric human faces on the wall of the cave.

"The local landowners with whom we were working were stunned by the findings. They said the faces had chosen that day to reveal themselves because they were pleased by the field work we were doing."

The Lene Hara carvings, or petroglyphs, are frontal, stylised faces each with eyes, a nose and a mouth. One has a circular headdress with rays that frame the face.

Uranium isotope dating by colleagues at the University of Queensland revealed the 'sun ray' face to be around 10,000 to 12,000 years old, placing it in the late Pleistocene. The other faces could not be dated but are likely to be equally ancient.

Lene Hara cave has been visited by archaeologists and rock art specialists since the early 1960s to study its rock paintings, which include hand stencils, boats, animals, human figures and linear decorative motifs. The age of the pigment art in Lene Hara is currently unknown but a fragment of limestone with traces of embedded red ochre was dated previously by Professor Sue O'Connor of The Australian National University to over 30,000 years ago.

Although stylised engravings of faces occur throughout Melanesia, Australia and the Pacific, the Lene Hara petroglyphs are the only examples that have been dated to the Pleistocene. No other petroglyphs of faces are known to exist anywhere on the island of Timor.

"Recording and dating the rock art of Timor should be a priority for future research, because of its cultural significance and value in understanding the development of art in our past," Professor O'Connor said.

Story Source:

The above story is reprinted (with editorial adaptations by ScienceDaily staff) from materials provided by CSIRO Australia.

Journal Reference:

1. Sue O'Connor, Ken Aplin, Emma St Pierre and Yue-Xing Feng. Faces of the ancestors revealed: discovery and dating of a Pleistocene-age petroglyph in Lene Hara Cave, East Timor. Antiquity, Volume: 84 Number: 325
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rynner2Offline
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PostPosted: 13-02-2011 23:10    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oi! Title too long!

I was looking forward to learning about Ancient Carvin (who he?), but I was disappointed... Sad
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WhistlingJackOffline
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PostPosted: 14-02-2011 11:50    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've juggled the title about a bit Wink
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rynner2Offline
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PostPosted: 25-07-2011 16:57    Post subject: Reply with quote

Carving found in Gower cave could be oldest rock art

An archaeologist believes a wall carving in a south Wales cave could be Britain's oldest example of rock art.
The faint scratchings of a speared reindeer are believed to have been carved by a hunter-gatherer in the Ice Age more than 14,000 years ago.
The archaeologist who found the carving on the Gower peninsula, Dr George Nash, called it "very, very exciting."
Experts are working to verify the discovery, although its exact location is being kept secret for now.

Dr Nash, a part-time academic for Bristol University, made the discovery while at the caves in September 2010.
He told BBC Wales: "It was a strange moment of being in the right place at the right time with the right kit.
"For 20-odd years I have been taking students to this cave and talking about what was going on there.
"They went back to their cars and the bus and I decided to have a little snoop around in the cave as I've never had the chance to do it before.
"Within a couple of minutes I was scrubbing at the back of a very strange and awkward recess and there a very faint image bounced in front of me - I couldn't believe my eyes."

He said that although the characteristics of the reindeer drawing match many found in northern Europe around 4,000-5,000 years later, the discovery of flint tools in the cave in the 1950s could hold the key to the carving's true date.

"In the 1950s, Cambridge University undertook an excavation there and found 300-400 pieces of flint and dated it to between 12,000-14,000 BC.
"This drawing was done with the right hand and the niche is very, very tight and the engraving has been done by somebody using a piece of flint who has drawn a classic reindeer design.

"My colleagues in England have been doing some work in Nottinghamshire at Creswell Crags and got very nice dates for a red deer and one or two other images of around 12,000-14,000 BC.
"I think this [newly found carving] may be roughly the same period or may be even earlier."

The limestone cliffs along the Gower coast are known for their archaeological importance.
The Red Lady of Paviland, actually the remains of a young male, is the earliest formal human burial to have been found in western Europe. It is thought to be roughly around 29,000 years old.
It was discovered at Goat's Hole Cave at Paviland on Gower in 1823 by William Buckland, then a geology professor at Oxford University.

Dr Nash added: "We know from the glacial geology of the area this was an open area just before the ice limit came down from the glaciers 15,000-20,000 years ago and it stops just about 2km short of the cave site.
"We know hunter fisher gatherers were roaming around this landscape, albeit seasonally, and they were burying their dead 30,000 years ago and making their mark through artistic endeavour between 30,000 and 40,000 years ago."

The find is now being officially dated and verified by experts at the National Museum of Wales and Cadw.
Its location will be revealed to the public in the future.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-south-west-wales-14272126
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oldroverOffline
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PostPosted: 28-07-2011 14:37    Post subject: Reply with quote

Excellent I'd have missed that and it's right on my doorstep. Thanks for posting.
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PostPosted: 21-08-2011 13:17    Post subject: Reply with quote

Crawled about all over this cave twice now, I can't bloody find it.
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PostPosted: 21-08-2011 13:42    Post subject: Reply with quote

oldrover wrote:
Crawled about all over this cave twice now, I can't bloody find it.

Has the location been revealed yet?
Quote:
Its location will be revealed to the public in the future.

Perhaps you got the wrong cave?
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oldroverOffline
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PostPosted: 21-08-2011 16:27    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Has the location been revealed yet?


Not intentionally but if you know Gower you can tell which one it is from the article.

I now also realise having re-read the article after coming back from there this morning that I was within inches of it both times. It's hidden at the moment and the article even tells you that and how. So I won't try to uncover it because that would be intrusive.

One thing I'm not sure about though is something that's in another chamber there, it looks like a geometric pattern carved into one of the faces. It looks too regular and parallel to be natural wear or veining.

It's a very beautiful cave from the outside, it really looks the part. Standing outside you can easily imagine a group of paleolithic nomads hanging about there. The trouble is though, and this worries me about revealing it's location, is that the cave is so easily accessible. And what must really give the archaeologists kittens, is the amount of Graffiti scratched into the walls of the first chamber over the last few years.

I worry about the balance between preserving something so precious and allowing the public the chance to see it. Maybe it's best if it's never revealed, after all Gower has seen it's fair share of theft and vandalism of ancient objects over the years.

And that's before I start going all Elgin Marbles over the Red Lady.
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PostPosted: 31-08-2011 13:14    Post subject: Reply with quote

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I worry about the balance between preserving something so precious and allowing the public the chance to see it. Maybe it's best if it's never revealed, after all Gower has seen it's fair share of theft and vandalism of ancient objects over the years.


It was on the news yesterday that someone has been fiddling about with it already, scrapping at it and smearing mud over it. Dr Nash is now taking about gating the section off. The BBC were there yesterday filming him stooped in front of it and also them entering the cave. The thing that strikes us around here is if as they said again yesterday it's still being kept secret, what else they could do to give it's location away. If there was any doubt left from the article then the TV pictures show you were it is down the nearest millimeter. And this after the oddballs have started defacing it.

On a relate note, I went to Paviland cave yesterday for the first time ever, it's an amazingly beautiful location, and aside from the very formal and meticulously executed early Victorian graffiti, someone I'd say within the last month or so has carefully carved three runes into the head of the burial area.
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PostPosted: 31-08-2011 14:05    Post subject: Reply with quote

oldrover wrote:
It was on the news yesterday that someone has been fiddling about with it already, scrapping at it and smearing mud over it.


One wonders why people feel the need to do such things.
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ramonmercadoOffline
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PostPosted: 31-08-2011 14:18    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jerry_B wrote:
oldrover wrote:
It was on the news yesterday that someone has been fiddling about with it already, scrapping at it and smearing mud over it.


One wonders why people feel the need to do such things.


Who can fathom the minds of the lumpenproletariat?
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PostPosted: 31-08-2011 15:05    Post subject: Reply with quote

What makes it especially unfathomable is that you either have to have a good working knowledge of local archaeology or to be willing to spend time looking it all up to work out the location, as I did. So what kind of mentality does that point to?

The best case scenario I can up with is that it was some sort of interested layman, like myself, who didn't have the sense to know not to touch.
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