By Christine Desdemaines-Hugon
Well-written and eminently obtainable, this e-book explores and celebrates the higher Palaeolithic paintings of the Dordogne, admirably conveying the author's enthusiasm for her topic. Desdemaines-Hugon's textual content reads as a personalized guided travel to 5 well-known websites, all of that are nonetheless open to the general public: Font de Gaume, Combralles, Cap Blanc, Rouffignac and Bernifal. The descriptions are fantastically performed, marrying the artwork with its surroundings, and transportable and ornamental arts also are coated, giving the reader a true think for the sophistication of Cro-magnon tradition, in addition to insights as to its improvement.
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Additional resources for Stepping-Stones: A Journey through the Ice Age Caves of the Dordogne
Entirely painted in shades of brown, the contours of these animals are sharp. The shapely hind legs are depicted in perspective, and details such as the bisons’ pointed horns and browed eyes are perfectly defined and finely outlined by a thin space of the paler natural stone surface, carefully reserved for this effect. A strip of hide might have been used to mask the wall, or some clay or vegetation—or, perhaps, for the animal’s body, the artist’s own hand shielding the outer space. ) Subtle shading, as well as judicious use of the natural rock, accentuates the shapely rump, thigh, and hump curves.
To let the art and the designs, mysterious and magical as they are, ultimately, perhaps, speak for themselves and for their creators. Font de Gaume, cave entrance t wo Font de Gaume T he steep climb up to the mouth of the cave of Font de Gaume can be experienced as a transition from present to past, a gradual shedding of modern everyday concerns. Bright wildflowers are scattered over the flaky rock surface on the way up. If you’re lucky, you might see some wild orchids in the spring, especially the rare “bee” orchids with their delicate mauve flowers lined up along the stem, each centered with what looks just like an intrusive bee.
Most remarkable are the first two bison. The state of their preservation Font de Gaume 23 gives us an opportunity to evaluate—better here than anywhere else in the cave—how fine the Magdalenian engraving and polychrome painting techniques were. Entirely painted in shades of brown, the contours of these animals are sharp. The shapely hind legs are depicted in perspective, and details such as the bisons’ pointed horns and browed eyes are perfectly defined and finely outlined by a thin space of the paler natural stone surface, carefully reserved for this effect.