Many people simply did not believe prehistoric man had the intellectual capacity to produce any kind of artistic expression.It was not until 1902 when the paintings were acknowledged as genuine.The cave was discovered in 1994 by Jean-Marie Chauvet and his team of speleologists.These paintings contain images of animals such as the ibex, mammoth, horses, lions, bears, rhinos and lions.After visiting the Altamira cave paintings in northern Spain, Pablo Picasso famously exclaimed “after Altamira, all is decadence”. The art in this cave and in many others that dot parts of France, Spain and other regions in the world are among the greatest pieces of art ever created.Like all great art they provide an insight into the way that people thought, even though it was tens of thousands of years ago.
Executed mainly in red and white with the occasional use of green and yellow the paintings usually depict the lives and times of the people who lived in the caves.
The Serra da Capivara National Park in northeast Brazil is home to numerous rock shelters that are decorated with cave paintings.
The paintings include scenes of rituals and hunting, trees and animals capivaras.
The paintings reflect the changing environment of the Sahara desert which used to have a much wetter climate.
Nine thousand years ago the surroundings were green with lakes and forests and with large herds of wild animals as demonstrated by rock paintings at Tadrart Aracus of animals such as giraffes, elephants and ostriches.