In this book, Jean Clottes (internationally renowned expert on prehistoric art) explores the origins of art and creativity.
He takes the reader on a guided tour of 85 caves and rock shelters, many of which are not open to the public, revealing the extraordinary beauty of the works of art within them. Cave Art features more than 300 works from the Paleolithic period, made between 35,000 and 11,000 years ago, presented in geographical and chronological order.
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The discovery of pre- historic decorated caves in western Europe transformed the way we think about the development of art. The earliest known evidence of human artistic endeavor, the awe-inspiring paintings, dramatic engravings and small, delicate sculptures of animals and humans found in these caves still hold a unique power and fascination, more than a century after they were first discovered.
More about this Phaidon edition
With an unparalleled selection of images, Cave Art offers a unique guided tour of the earliest expressions of human creativity. Each work in Cave Art is illustrated by a color photograph, and accompanied by a clear, vivid explanatory text. A concise introduction tells the story of the discovery of the caves, and gives a clear outline of current knowledge, research and debate on the subject of prehistoric art. The book also includes a chronology, maps of the main caves and sites, a glossary and a list of sites that can be visited.
This comprehensive, accessible introduction to prehistoric art includes such spectacular works as the famous horses of Lascaux, the buffalo in the Altamira cave in Spain and the ivory carving of a woman's face found at Brassempouy in the south of France, as well as examples from less well- known sites. A wonderful range of animals is presented, from cave bears to reindeer, as well as mysterious abstract signs and schematic representations of human beings. Examples of portable art and sculpture are also included. While most of the caves described in the book are European, Cave Art also includes examples of open-air rock art made after the last ice age at sites around the world.
More about the author
Jean Clottes (b. 1933) is one of the world's leading specialists in prehistoric art. A researcher and academic, Clottes is an expert for the International Committee on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS- UNESCO) and president of the International Federation of Rock Art Organizations (IFRAO). He is the author and co-author of numerous reference works about Palaeolithic art, including Chauvet Cave: The Art of Earliest Times (2001), World Rock Art (2002) and The Shamans of Prehistory (2007).