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When desert was green

Graphics (Intaglio, Collagraphy): Now with petroglyph. Updated 2016-12-06.

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"Scene from Tadrart Acacus". Collagraphy. 2016. 20x15 cm.

Once again standing on the shoulders of giants: Learning from past masters. Read on...

The main figure of this print (the bull/ox) is a paraphrase of neolithic rock art from Tadrart Acacus in Libya. The ox is inspired by one specific motif. The print is similar-but-not-identical.

(Note: The unesco photo linked above was not the source of inspiration for this print, it was another photo sourced off the internet and taken from a slightly different angle.)

The rock art of this site is a UNESCO World Heritage site. The rock art images date from 12,000 BCE to 100 CE. It has been, and still is very threatened (as, sadly, most anything else in that region).

At the site there are paintings spanning 12,000 years, this is not one of the recent ones (as far as I can tell).

Oh, I almost forgot: If you follow the links and look at the UNESCO gallery, please ignore the desert! At the time of these paintings, there was no desert. Mankind created the desert, most likely it took no longer than one or two centuries. Possibly assisted by some volcanic eruptions (but most likely independent of those, imho. I personally suspect that agriculture was mainly responsible, but then agriculture at that age may be somewhat controversial).

Some of the more recent rock art (recognizable by poor execution, sub-par craftmanship, bad anatomy, blurred/uneven lines, mostly no colour) depict scenes of camel-riders; bedouins. Those were (imho) made after the area had been turned to desert.

This area was very green and packed with lifeforms: There was dense "rainforest" (natural forest vegetation, that is) with some open land (prairie/steppe/savannah). It does not look like there was wetland, larger water bodies and/or waterways, but I might be wrong about that. As a minimum there had to be enough water for all kinds of life that roamed that area, and for the plant life as well.

2016.11.06 21:32

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