Art Before History PDF



Art Before History PDF
Prehistoric Art
William V. Ganis, PhD
Dating Conventions and Abbreviations
B.C.=before Christ
B.C.E.=before the Common Era
A.D.=Anno Domini (the year of our Lord)
C.E.=Common Era
c. or ca.= circa
Pebble resembling a human face
from Makaspansgat South Africa
ca. 3,000,000 B.C.E.
reddish brown jasperite
approximately 2 3/8 in. wide
Paleolithic Art
Apollo 11 Cave
ca. 23,000 B.C.E.
charcoal on stone
5 in x 4 3/4 in.
Human with Feline Head
from Hohlenstein-Stadel, Germany
ca. 30,000-28,000 B.C.E.
mammoth ivory
11 5/8 in. high
Human with Feline Head
from Hohlenstein-Stadel, Germany
ca. 30,000-28,000 B.C.E.
mammoth ivory
11 5/8 in. high
Venus of Willendorf
from Willendorf, Austria
ca. 28,000-25,000 B.C.E.
4 1/4 in. high
Woman of Lespugue
from cave of Les Rideaux, France
ca. 20,000 B.C.E.
mammoth ivory
5 3/4 in. high
Various European “Venus” figures
Woman of Laussel
from a cave in
Laussel, Dordogne, France
ca. 25,000-20,000 B.C.E.
painted limestone
approximately 18 in. high
Bison reliefs
from a cave at Le Tuc d’Audoubert,
Ariége, France
ca. 15,000-10,000 B.C.E.
each approximately 2 feet long
Figure 1-8 Bison with turned head, fragmentary spearthrower, from La Madeleine, France,
ca. 12,000 BCE. Reindeer horn, 4” long.
Altamira Cave paintings
Santander, Spain
ca. 12,000-11,000 B.C.E.
pigment on stone
Figure 1-9 Bison, detail of a
painted ceiling in the cave at
Altamira, Spain, ca. 12,000–11,000
BCE. Each bison 5’ long.
Pech-Merle Cave paintings
Lot, France
ca. 22,000 B.C.E.
pigment on stone
Figure 1-10 Spotted horses and negative hand imprints, wall painting in the cave at Pech-Merle, France,
ca. 22,000 BCE. 11’ 2” long.
Figure 1-11 Hall of the Bulls (left wall) in the cave at Lascaux, France, ca. 15,000–13,000 BCE. Largest bull 11’
6” long.
Lascaux Cave paintings
Lascaux, Dordogne, France
ca. 15,000-13,000 B.C.E.
pigment on stone
Figure 1-13 Rhinoceros, wounded man, and disemboweled bison, painting in the well of the
cave at Lascaux, France ca. 15,000 – 13,000 BCE. Bison 3’ 8” long.
Chauvet Cave paintings
Vallon-Pont-d’Arc, Ardèche, France
ca. 30,000-28,000 B.C.E.
pigment on stone
35 ca.
Figure 1-12 Aurochs, horses, and rhinoceroses, wall painting in Chauvet Cave, Vallon-Pont-d’Arc, France,
30,000–28,000 or ca. 15,000–13,000 BCE.
Mammoth bone dwelling
from Ukraine
ca. 16,000-10,000 B.C.E.
Neolithic Art
Great Stone Tower of Settlement
Jericho, Israel/Gaza
ca. 8,000-7,000 B.C.E.
Human Skulls with
Restored Features
from Jericho, Israel/Gaza
ca. 7,000-6,000 B.C.E.
skulls, plaster, shells
Human figure
From Ain Ghazal, Jordan
ca. 6,750-6,250 B.C.E.
plaster, painted and inlaid with
cowrie shell and bitumen
Figure 1-16 Restored view of a section of Level VI, Çatal Höyük, Turkey, ca. 6000–5900 BCE
(John Swogger).
Çatal Höyük
ca. 6,000-5,900 B.C.E.
Deer Hunt
detail of a wall painting from
Level III
Çatal Höyük, Turkey
ca. 5,750 B.C.E.
Çatal Höyük
ca. 6,000-5,900 B.C.E.
Landscape with Volcanic Eruption
Çatal Höyük, Turkey
ca. 6150
watercolor copy of a wall painting
Figures of Man and
From Cernavoda,
ca. 4,000-3,500 B.C.E.
4 1/2 in. high
Menhir alignments at
Carnac, France
ca. 4,250-3,750 B.C.E.
various Menhirs
Ireland, Scotland, England, France
Ireland, Scotland, England, France
Figure 1-19 Gallery leading to the
main chamber of the passage
grave, Newgrange, Ireland, ca.
3200 – 2500 BCE.
Salisury Plain, Wiltshire, England
ca. 2,550-1,600 B.C.E.
sarsen and bluestone
Figure 1-20 Aerial view of Stonehenge, Salisbury Plain, England, ca. 2550–1600 BCE. Circle
is 97' in diameter; trilithons 24' high.

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