Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Stories of the Past

I feel the artist was interpreting the cycle of life in the form of animals.  The fact that the different species of animals were depicted in the time of their mating rituals (spring, summer, and fall) led me to believe that the artist was either inspired or purposely depicted the animals during this time. I furthermore think that the artist was providing this as a roadmap or story to guide future generations.
This leads me to think that this is the reason that not as many people were included. Because the informational art would not be as resourceful for the future human generations humans were not depicted as often
Difficulties that I think early humans may have navigated in order to paint the pictures depicted in the caves are light and time. Among other difficulties time was probably a major issue due to the fact agriculture was not quite in full effect. Utilizing times when hunting and gathering food would mean that they were painting using a basic form of a torch. Since electricity had not been invented light and the fuel that provided light was a resource not to be wasted (especially since the light was probably also the source of heat in those times).
Things that I feel are possible functions of early art are storytelling, a record of the history (visual forms of language), or possibly a way to persuade or influence the soon to be masses of people. Storytelling has a prominent pastime is a sort of all-encompassing function. It somewhat includes a record of history although storytelling in my eyes is not as subjective. Art used to create a general consensus I feel could have been purposely distorted towards one side to help persuade people to favor the artist opinion.
                Modern art I feel generally has the same function. Modern art similar to the art of the Lascaux Caves may provide future generations into what was occurring at the time. If dated, modern art could show why the artist or what influenced the artist to create their art. 
I like many forms of art, but the pain and time (devotion) someone endures to receive a tattoo makes it one of my favorites. The artist that create tattoos perform a service. Tattoos provide many functions which include memorials, self-expression, something meaningful that a person wants to share with the world, a story, a brand that may mark someone as part of something larger or just the opposite provideing uniqueness. There are many examples of tattoos in different cultures. A few examples are Polynesians, Yakuza (Japanese), even Egyptians had tattoos. The main repercussions of tattoos is that they are painful to remove and some see it in a negative light even sinful.


  1. Great post :), I enjoyed the train of thought that you carried with the concept of tattoos. How it can be a way of self expression or a way of demonstrating to others that you belong to a certain group. Regretfully somewhere along the line peoples narrow minds and lack of willingness to accept other points of views have take a beautiful art form and attributed sinful characteristics. Great post and connections between the Egyptians and the Yakuza

  2. Great opening discussion on the "calendar-like" function of the paintings. I agree that this may offer an explanation for the absence of humans in the images.

    Missing a section on the other cultural aspects you can learn from the paintings?

    I'm glad you raised the art of tattooing! That is a very unique form of art. It also has a unique culture to it and I would have liked you to have gone into that here. Another possible detriment, though of course this is to the individual, is the negative attitude people tend to have toward body tattooing. Good tie-in with past cultures.

    Other than a couple of missing sections, very interesting post.

  3. Your comment about the art providing a roadmap for future generations was insightful....much like writing a book of information . I had not thought about it like that. Enjoyed the info on tattooing as well. I had to look twice at the tattooed hand. Good post:-)