cave paintings, 洞窟絵画
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Cave or rock paintings are paintings painted on cave or rock walls and ceilings, usually dating to prehistoric times. Rock paintings are made since the Upper Paleolithic, 40,000 years ago. It is widely believed that the paintings are the work of respected elders or shamans.
1 European rock paintings
2 African rock paintings
3 Australian rock paintings
3.1 Ochre paintings in Kakadu National Park in Northern Australia.
4 Southeast Asia rock paintings
7 External links
European rock paintings
The cave paintings of Lascaux were made in the Upper Old Stone Age
When Europeans first encountered the Magdalenian paintings of the Altamira cave, Cantabria, Spain in 1879, they were considered to be hoaxes by academics. The new Darwinian thinking on evolution was interpreted as meaning that early humans could not have been sufficiently advanced to create art. Emile Cartailhac, one of the most respected prehistorians of the late nineteenth century believed they had been thought up by Creationists to support their ideas and ridicule Darwin's. Recent reappraisals and increasing numbers of discoveries have illustrated their authenticity and indicated the high levels of artistry of Upper Palaeolithic humans who used only basic tools. Cave paintings can also give valuable clues as to the culture and beliefs of that era.
The age of the paintings in many sites remains a contentious issue, since methods like radiocarbon dating can be easily misled by contaminated samples of older or newer material, and caves and rocky overhangs are typically littered with debris from many time periods. The choice of subject matter can indicate date such as the reindeer at the Spanish cave of Cueva de las Monedas which imply the art is from the last ice age. The oldest cave is that of Chauvet, and is 32,000 years old.
Spanish Cave Painting of Bulls
The most common themes in cave paintings are large wild animals, such as bison, horses, aurochs, and deer, and tracings of human hands as well as abstract patterns, called Macaroni by Breuil. Drawings of humans are rare and are usually schematic rather than the more naturalistic animal subjects. Cave art may have begun in the Aurignacian period (Hohle Fels, Germany), but reached its apogee in the late Magdalenian (Lascaux, France).
The paintings were drawn with red and yellow ochre, hematite, manganese oxide and charcoal. Sometimes the silhouette of the animal was incised in the rock first. Stone lamps provided some light. Breuil interpreted the paintings as being hunting magic, meant to increase the number of animals. As there are some clay sculptures that seem to have been the targets of spears, this may partly be true, but does not explain the pictures of beasts of prey such as the lion or the bear.
An alternative and more modern theory, based on studies of more modern hunter-gatherer societies, is that the paintings were made by Cro-Magnon shaman. The shaman would retreat into the darkness of the caves, enter into a trance state and then paint images of their visions, perhaps with some notion of drawing power out of the cave walls themselves. This goes some way towards explaining the remoteness of some of the paintings (which often occur in deep or small caves) and the variety of subject matter (from prey animals to predators and human hand-prints). However, as with all prehistory, it is impossible to be certain due to the relative lack of material evidence and the many pitfalls associated with trying to understand the prehistoric mindset with a modern mind.
Paintings on Lol-Tun cave from Yucatn
Rock painting was also performed on cliff faces, but fewer of those have survived due to erosion. One well-known example are the rock paintings of Astuvansalmi in the Saimaa area of Finland.
In 2003, cave etchings also were discovered in Creswell Crags, Nottinghamshire, England.
Well known cave paintings include those of:
* Lascaux, France
* La Marche, near Lussac-les-Chateaux, France
* Chauvet Cave, near Vallon-Pont-d'Arc, France
* Altamira, near Santillana del Mar, Cantabria, Spain
* Cosquer Cave, with an entrance below sea level near Marseille, France
African rock paintings
At Ukhahlamba-Drakensberg, South Africa, now thought to be some 3,000 years old, the paintings by the San people who settled in the area some 8,000 years ago depict animals and humans, and are thought to represent religious beliefs.
Cave paintings are found in the Tassili n'Ajjer mountains in southeast Algeria also in the Akakus, Messak Settafet and Tadrart in Libya and other Sahara regions including: Ayr mountains, Niger and Tibesti, Chad.
Australian rock paintings
Significant early cave paintings have also been found in Australia.
Ochre paintings in Kakadu National Park in Northern Australia.
A male hunter (or warrior ).
The park has a large collection of ochre paintings. Ochre is a not an organic material, so carbon dating of these pictures is impossible. Sometimes the approximate date or, at least, an epoch, can be guessed from the content.
A wallaby (and some other things).
A sailing ship -- this one is easier to date even without carbon dating.
An elaborate turtle.
Fishes -- an X-ray style painting -- with some internal organs shown in detail.
A macropod's (probably kangaroo's) skeleton
Southeast Asia rock paintings
There are rock paintings in caves in Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia. In Thailand, caves and scarps along the Thai-Burmese border, in the Petchabuan Range of Central Thailand, and overlooking the Mekong River in Nakorn Sawan Province, all contain galleries of rock paintings. In Malaysia the oldest paintings are at Gua Tambun in Perak, dated at 2000 years, and those in the Painted Cave at Niah Caves National Park are 1200 years old. See prehistoric Malaysia. In Indonesia the caves at Maros in Sulawesi are famous for their hand prints, also found in caves in the Sangkulirang area of Kalimantan.
* Sympathetic magic
* Rock art
* Parietal art
* Prehistoric art
The above explanation comes from 出典: フリー百科事典"ウィキペディア"