Re-Creating Cave Art

Art can convey a great deal about life in earlier times: the way people dressed, what they ate, what entertainments they enjoyed, and more. And art created by cave dwellers of the Paleolithic period is no different.

More than 400 art-filled caves exist around the world, predominantly in France and Spain. The majority of cave art depicts animals that humans would have encountered or hunted for food such as mammoths, horses, lions, and deer; additional images include animal figures and various symbols. Cave paintings were generally created using red or black pigments made from rocks.

For their projects, Ms. Ski’s students were given large pieces of brown packing paper. After a brief discussion on what types of images would be appropriate for their cave art, the students quickly began drawing. They then used pastels in neutral shades to color their drawings. As a last step, they placed their hand in neutral-colored paint and then placed their paint-covered hand on their drawing to “sign” their artwork.

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