Examples of cave paintings:
from Chauvet-pont d’arc
Cave paintings were a visual way to communicate ideas before spoken language was developed. They were utilized by prehistoric man using natural paints made from water, plant juice, animal blood, soil, charcoal, and hematite. Their brushes also came from nature; they were made from sticks, small stones, leaves, and animal hair. Although archeologists and historians are not completely sure why cave prehistoric man created cave paintings, they have three main theories.
- to tell a story or retell an event
- as visual instructions on hunting methods
- for magical/religious purposes believing if an image of a desired event is created, it may come true
The study of these caves is known as speleology, or the science of exploring underground spaces.