Thursday, 3 December 2015

”Stone Age Picasso” Challenges Views of Ancient Man

Ancient Australians were clever artists. Image courtesy of TimJN1, Creative Commons (CC BY-SA 2.0). It seems that early Europeans also knew how to make sophisticated art.

Joel Kontinen

Most people used to think that ancient man was not sophisticated enough to produce great works of art. However, many great cave paintings challenge this view that has roots in Darwinian evolution.

Now, a new paper published in the journal PLoS One brings down yet another false belief.

Marcos García-Diez and Manuel Vaquero discovered an engraving at Molí del Salt near Barcelona. They think that it describes six beehive-shaped huts. It seems that “hunter-gatherers” were able to produce art that not only depicts animals but also buildings.

And an older study has shown that their menu was more varied than we would assume.

Previous research has brought about the demise of the view that hunter-gatherers were unable to build cities. The ruins of Göbekli Tepe in Turkey show that they were skilled architects.

According to Genesis, humans were inventive from the dawn of mankind, so we would expect to find evidence of creativity in old rocks.

That is exactly what we find.


Coghlan, Andy. 2015. Stone Age Picasso made oldest known drawing of human settlement. New Scientist (2 December).