Monday, July 15, 2024

35,000-year-old statue thought to be world’s first nude sculpture

A 35,000 year-old buxom statuette has been unveiled by scientists as the world’s earliest sculpture of the naked female form.
The sexually explicit figurine was carved out of mammoth ivory and was given huge breasts and private parts along with a bloated belly and thighs that by today’s standards “could be seen as bordering on the pornographic.”
The prehistoric figurine, named ‘Venus’ after the Roman goddess of love, was no Kate Moss as small buttocks and a slender waist are very much a modern trend.
Cavemen were obsessed with big breasts and bottoms and exaggerated these traits in their art as they regarded these parts of the female anatomy as signs of fertility.
The statue, described in Nature, was found buried in the Hohle Fels Cave near Ulm in the Swabian Jura region of south-western Germany alongside stone, bone and ivory tools and was pieced together from six fragments.
It stands only 2.35 ins (59.7mm) high and 1.36 ins (34.6mm) wide and has a thickness of 1.23 ins (31.3mm). Weighing 1.17oz (33.3 grams), only the left arm and shoulder are missing.
The ‘Venus of Hohle Fels’ lacks a head and instead there is an off-centre but carefully carved ring located above the figurine’s broad shoulders.
Around 10,000 to 40,000 years ago, a period known as the Upper Palaeolithic, humans made the transition from functional toolmaking to art and adornment.
Professor Nicholas Conard, an archaeologist who found the relic, said: “This ring, despite being weathered, preserves polish, suggesting that the figurine at times was suspended as a pendant.”
He said the Venus has “grotesquely exaggerated sexual features” and more than thirty radiocarbon dating measurements were taken to show it is 5,000 years older than well-known ‘Venuses’ from the Gravettian culture.
Although abstract depictions have been documented at southern African sites that date back to 75,000 years ago, the earliest figurative representations were previously estimated to be between 30 and 40 thousand years old.

Courtesy of telegraph.co.uk

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