Tag Archives: cave paintings

Primitive art: Wall and cave paintings

What I’m looking for here is how sophisticated art is. To begin with, how good are artists from any given period at portraying three dimensions in two dimensions? Receding train tracks, or the pre-train era equivalent, indicate a minimum of late concrete operational (linear logical) thinking. So I will only be looking at drawings and paintings, not sculptures. My main source for art history is Gardner’s Art Through the Ages: A global history. (Thirteenth edition, by Fred S. Kleiner, 2009. Boston: Thomson Wadsworth, but also some earlier editions, depending on what was on the library shelf at the time.)

The oldest paintings we have are from caves in Europe and the Middle East. These date from the early creative explosion (circa 30,000 years ago). Continue reading