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Cave Painting Notes

by: Joanna Nawn

Cave Painting Notes Art H 111

Joanna Nawn
Penn State
GPA 3.94

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About this Document

These notes contain the notes from the Cave Painting video and Cave Painting lecture.
Ancient through medieval art
Dr. Bruhn
Class Notes
Cave Painting, Chauvet Cave, Lesco Cave, Alta Verra Cave
25 ?




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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Joanna Nawn on Thursday February 11, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to Art H 111 at Pennsylvania State University taught by Dr. Bruhn in Winter 2016. Since its upload, it has received 54 views. For similar materials see Ancient through medieval art in Art at Pennsylvania State University.


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Date Created: 02/11/16
Cave Painting video  Northern Spain, Alta Vera  A discovery was made by a nine year old girl named Maria  1879 Sautoula and his daughter went to caved to get floor samples when Maria found the paintings  depicted images of extinct ox  other archeologists didn’t believe prehistoric savages were capable of making beautiful paintings  other findings in France and Spain proved that the paintings were in fact prehistoric Cave Painting lecture  Chauvet Cave- France o Oldest cave art found o 30,000-28,000 BCE o Most variety of subjects painted o 427 images with 17 different species (lion, bears, rhinos and cattle) o Handprints and an image of a human female were found o Images were made of black and red outlines o Sometimes made with multiple colors (polycromy) o Shading and smudging was used as well o The animals painted were very expressive o Animals painted in different sizes and overlap to show movement o The handprints were found to be from women and teens o They used wooden scafoldings to reach high areas o Painting  Black pigment- made from charred bones or vegetable matter  Oaker (iron ore)- used to make yellow, orange, red and brown shades  When placed in the heat you could have varying shades of reds and yellows  The paint was grinded into a powder and blown through weeds or bone onto the cave  It also could have been mixed with a liquid (water, eggwhite, fat or blood) to paint with  Paint could be applied with sponges made from moss or fur  Paint could also be applied with paintbrushes made from fur, feather or a chewed stick o To make outlines they used charcoal and oaker chunks  Pesh Mural Horse- Chauvet Cave o Shows technique o The pattern was made possibly by throwing rocks at the painting o The horses heads seem delicate for their long and bulky bodies o An archeologist recreated the painting  He chewed pieces of charcoal and blew the paint onto the wall using his hand  For the spots he used a stencil with leather that had holes in it  It was completed in 32 hours  Lasco Cave o 600 paintings o 1500 engravings o 15,000 BCE o Found in 1940 o Was open to the public after WWII o Carbon dioxide damaged the works o 1963 the cave was closed so that scientists could attempt to fix the damage o Lasco 2 was made, it is a replica of the original  Hall of the Bulls – Lasco Cave o Located near the entrance o Concentrated towards the roof where the limestone was the most smooth o Reindeer are in this image but are very small o The bulls are huge, with one measuring 18 feet long o They were drawn thick and shaded with some completely filled in o Like at Chauvet Cave some animals are shown on top of each other indicating that more than one artist worked on the piece over time  Image near the 16 foot shaft o Only image in the cave that shows a story o A wounded bison is depicted with a spear through its stomach with its guts coming out  Next to it is a male figure with a bird head, at his feet is a broken spear  Beside him is a staff with a bird on top  This is probably a spear thrower, which gives hunters better range and force  The rhino seen in the picture is running off o Some people question why the man is drawn with such little detail  Alta Vera Cave- Spain o Found in 1869 o Painters used the natural forms of the cave to highlight the three dimensions of the cave o Scholars have some ideas why the paintings were done  Magical function making sure the herds are plentiful  Sympathetic magic  Example: a sleeping animal- hunters would hope that they would come across sleeping prey  Ritual- initiation into adulthood and gatherers  Bison Sculpture- Alta Vera Cave o 13,000 BCE o 2 feet long in high relief o Muscles are shown and engravings for fur make them seem more realistic  Lamp from France o 15,000-13,000 BCE o Stone lamp with an engraving of an ivex  Mesolithic Facts o Mesolithic meaning the middle stone age  Neolithic Area Characteristics o An organized system of agriculture o The maintenance of herds and domesticated animals o Permanent year round settlements  Neolithic facts o New climates and hunting technology helped make changes o The standard of living improved for early people o Plants were now cultivated (wheat and barley) o Agriculture started  Art from the Mesolithic Period featured: o Geometric shapes and patterns with simplified representations of humans and animals doing everyday activities in Europe o These images were painted or engraved in the walls of shallow rock shelters  Mesolithic Painting- Cohole Spain o 4,000- 2,000 BCE o One of many images in the same rock shelter o Shows women near large animals


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