by Robert Wilkinson
It seems that painters were creating different paints and painting tools a looooong time ago! This is a major find!!
From the Washington Post, a story by Brian Vastag reports that 100,000 years ago, on the coast of South Africa, someone sat in a cave overlooking the Indian Ocean and created paint, and stacked the mixing shell and grindstones in a neat pile where it was found undisturbed just a few years ago.
From the story,
Unearthed in 2008 and described Friday in the journal Science, these paint “tool kits,” researchers say, push deeper into human history the evidence for artistic impulses and complex, planned behavior. Previously, the oldest evidence of ochre paint was found at another site in South Africa dated to about 60,000 years ago....
Traces of paint on the tools show that the cave-dwellers mixed ochre — red or yellow minerals that contain metal oxides — with bone marrow, charcoal, flecks of quartz, and a liquid, probably water. Paint experts at the Louvre in Paris performed the analysis.
With ground ochre as the base, the marrow and charcoal acted as binders. The quartz could have made the compound sticky, with water — in the right amount — providing the proper consistency....
The cave, called Blombos, sits in a cliff on the coast of South Africa about 180 miles east of Cape Town. It shows signs of human use starting 130,000 years ago. Protected from wind and rain and close to seafood, antelope and other game, the cave apparently made for an inviting stopover for wave after wave of nomadic hunter-gatherers.
... the deepest layer, which the team reached in 2008, was different. Instead of scattered remains, two tidy “tool kits” emerged, covered by sand. Both included fist-size abalone shells and lay in neat piles.
In one kit, a round stone sat inside the shell. Six other grinding or pounding stones were arrayed around the shell and were probably used to smash the ochre. A small slab — a grinding stone — rested on top of the assemblage. A shoulder blade from a seal revealed evidence of heating and marrow extraction, and paint at the end of a thin forearm bone from a dog or a wolf showed that it was used to spread the paint....
By all means check out the article if you want to know more. It seems humanity was into the arts a whole lot earlier than the 19th and 20th century scientists and historians have been willing to admit. Maybe the Secret Doctrine was right?;-) I suspect the "old technologies" described by Edgar Cayce are next.
© Copyright 2011 Robert Wilkinson