Prehistoric art – 2023 conference program

Cycle of nine lectures on prehistory

Nice Archaeological Museum – Terra Amata website

Annual programme

Cycle 2023

As every year, the Terra Amata Museum of Prehistory organizes a thematic cycle of scientific culture conferences, with the support of the museum’s friends, CEPTA. This year, we chose to discover the riches of prehistoric art.

Prehistoric Museum of Terra Amata Annual conference program of the 2023 Cycle of Prehistoric Art

2023 conference program

Paleolithic art: for a brief introduction
Wednesday, January 18, 2023 at 6 pm.
Bertrand ROUSSEL (Doctor of Prehistory, Director of the Nice Archaeological Museum)

The conference offers public presentations based on Paleolithic Art, in particular, on examples from the south of France.

Grimaldi’s Cave (Ventimiglia, Liguria, Italy): from prehistory to prehistory

Wednesday, February 8, 2023 at 6 pm.
Elena ROSSONI-NOTTER (Director of the Museum of Prehistoric Anthropology of Monaco, founded by Prince Albert I, Doctor of Prehistory)

Grimaldi Caves or Balzi Rossi, located in Ventimiglia, is a collection of important and world-famous sites; it is still the subject of international research. Cavities, shelters and exposed sites reveal successive and varied traces of Paleolithic hunter-gatherers, the oldest of which, in Prince of Monaco’s cave, is 200,000 years old. We will dive back into the long history of its excavations and major discoveries.
We will also be and more specifically interested in the newest “comers”, the groupHomo sapiens who came 25,000 years ago, author of interesting funerary practices and arts. Graves, Venus, and carvings have indeed been excavated; they inform as much as they question us about the culture and knowledge of our ancestors.

Origin of Art: Chauvet Cave, mankind’s first great masterpiece
Wednesday, March 15, 2023 at 6 pm.
Valérie MOLÈS (Doctor of Prehistory, Head of Educational and Scientific Cultural Mediation at Grotte Chauvet 2)

In a deep cave in the Gorges de l’Ardèche, the first artist in human history painted a masterpiece. The Chauvet Cave discovered in 1994 is one of the oldest and one of the most remarkable testimonies of Paleolithic parietal art (UNESCO in 2014). The cavities and their drawings are a unique testimony to this prehistoric people’s approach to symbolic thinking.
What Chauvet Cave tells us Homo sapiens 40,000 years ago and our use of contemporary parietal art via Chauvet 2?

Cosquer’s Cave, immersed in prehistoric…
Wednesday, April 12, 2023 at 6 pm.
Jacques COLLINA-GIRARD (Geologist, Prehistoric and Scientific Diver)

Through photographs taken in the Cosquer cave, lecturers will visit the cave providing information about the archaeological and geological interest of this famous prehistoric decorated cave, which was discovered in the summer of 1991 in a tributary of the Marseille river. The book signing sunken caveattend the conference.

Representation of women in the Paleolithic
Wednesday, May 3, 2023 at 6 pm.
Annie Coutor (CEPTA Member)

During prehistory, over the 20,000 years and over the vast area stretching from the Atlantic to Siberia, women were far more represented than men, which no doubt shows their importance at that time. After this limited catalog of representations of prehistoric women, the debate about the interpretation of these images will be opened.

Prehistory of Cinema
Wednesday, June 7, 2023 at 6 pm.
Marc AZEMA (Doctor of archeology, member of the Chauvet scientific team (2001-2017), director-screenwriter at Passé Simple, director of RAN (Narbonnaise Archaeological Meeting)

prehistoric animated animals
Prehistory of Cinema: Paleolithic Origins of Graphic Narrative and Cinematography… Marc Azema

From its origins, man “made his cinema”… Long before the Edison and Lumière brothers, cave walls and objects decorated by Paleolithic artists testify to the application of the graphic, technical, and narrative processes that characterize truly “prehistory.” . cinema”. To illustrate his point, Marc Azéma invites the reader to accompany him through time and space. Marc Azéma will take you on a journey through the origins of art, across continents, ending with the first films of Georges Méliés or Windsor McKay. The discoveries foretold by those prehistoric people in half dark caves then come true on the projection space screen.
“Archaeology of cinema” is much older than we think.
The signing of the book La préhistoire du cinema by Marc Azéma at the end of the conference

Lascaux, model cave or cultural exclusion?
Wednesday 25 October 2023 at 18.00 Romain PIGEAUD (Prehistoric Doctor – UMR 6566 “CReAAH” from CNRS – CRAL / UMR 8566 EHESS/CNRS)
Romain Pigeaud is the author of Lascaux – History and Archeology of Prehistoric Gems

Lascaux Cave often served as a trap for prehistorians, who had built great theories from its walls. However, the extraordinary character of its decor makes any attempt at generalization risky, to say the least. We will ask ourselves how Lascaux is a decorated cave like no other, and why it remains unique in its kind.

Neolithic idols in southern French graphic/artistic expression
Wednesday, November 15, 2022 at 6 pm.
Philippe HAMEAU (Lecturer at the University of Côte d’Azur)

Menhirs with carved stone motifs known as “horseshoes”, these idols are a remarkable symbol of the Neolithic period. It exists in various categories of sites and may even be older than it.

Roc-aux-Sorciers sculptural decoration (Vienne)
What do animals tell us?
Wednesday, December 13, 2023 at 6 pm.
Patricia VALINCY (Doctor of Prehistory)

The Poitou-Charentes region is home to a rich deposit concentration of Paleolithic art, some of which dates back to the Magdalenian period, offering outstanding works of parietal and mobile art. These include the Chair of Calvin (Mouthiers), the grotto of the Marche (Lussac-les-Châteaux) and the Roc-aux-Sorciers (Angles-sur-l’Anglin), notable in particular for their sculptural decoration of Abri Bourdois dating from Middle Magdalene. These relief decorations extend horizontally for more than 18 meters and incorporate several themes including bison, horses, “Venus”, and ibex. One of the site’s originalities is that it has a carved shelter at the foot of the level of this habitat of Magdalenian artists. The vast amount of archaeological material unearthed during the excavations of Suzanne St-Mathurin (47-64), allows us today to better understand the daily lives of these prehistoric artists. It is thus possible to study animals by making connections between the figurative panels of the frieze and the fauna found in very specific archaeological contexts. This analysis sheds light on the complex relationships between the Magdalenian and each animal species and sheds more light on the function of this extraordinary site.

Year-round conference cycle from January to December 2023

How ?
Free tuition
Within the limits of available seats

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