Prehistory and Prehistoric Art
PREHISTORY: refers to the time period before people could write, the time before written records.
- Objects are the documents of record
- Challenage is to "read" the nonverbal info found in objects.
CHRONOLOGY: divided into three general phases
- Paleolithic (Old Stone Age) c40,000-8,000 BCE
- Mesolithic (Middle Stone Age) c8,000-7,000 BCE
- Neolithic (New Stone Age) c7,000-2,300 BCE
PAINTING-represents the most extensive example of Paleolithic art.
- Altimira, Spain-Bison (fig.1-9), c14,000-12,000 BCE
- Altimira, Spain-Dead Bison (fig.1-9), c14,000-12,000 BCE
- Lascaux, France-Well Scene c15,000-10,000 BCE
- Lascaux, France-Hall of Bulls (fig.1-11), c15,000-10,000 BCE
- Lascaux, France-Chinese Horse c15,000-10,000 BCE
SCULPTURE-examples predate painting and drawing in archaeological record.
- Venus of Willendorf (fig.1-4), Vienna, Austria, c30,000-25,000 BCE
- Venus of Laussel c23,000-20,000 BCE
- Woman from Brassempouy (fig.1-6), France, c22,000 BCE
- Bison (fig.1-13), Le Tuc d'Audoubert, France, c13,000BCE
The Mesolithic was a transitional period, when the climatic, geographical and biological patterns of today were established. Artistically, the human figure was represented in groups rather than the single figure of the Paleolithic.
- Marching Warriors, Castellon, Spain, c7000-4000 BCE
Change from hunting and gathering to sedentary existence, new art form, monumental architecture, Megaliths-Greek-Megas, made from huge stones without mortar
- Carnac, France, c3,000 BCE
- Stonehenge, England (fig.1-21), c2750-1500 BCE