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First Epigravettian ceramic figurines from Europe (Vela Spila, Croatia).

Farbstein R, Radić D, Brajković D, Miracle PT - PLoS ONE (2012)

Bottom Line: Vela Spila ceramics offer compelling technological and stylistic comparisons with the only other evidence of a developed Palaeolithic ceramic tradition found at the sites of Pavlov I and Dolní Věstonice I, in the Czech Republic, c. 31,000-27,000 cal BP.Because of the 10,000-year gap between the two assemblages, the Vela Spila ceramics are interpreted as evidence of an independent invention of this technology.Consequently, these artifacts provide evidence of a new social context in which ceramics developed and were used to make art in the Upper Palaeolithic.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, United Kingdom. rebecca.farbstein@gmail.com

ABSTRACT
Recent finds of 36 ceramic artifacts from the archaeological site of Vela Spila, Croatia, offer the first evidence of ceramic figurative art in late Upper Palaeolithic Europe, c. 17,500-15,000 years before present (BP). The size and diversity of this artistic ceramic assemblage indicate the emergence of a social tradition, rather than more ephemeral experimentation with a new material. Vela Spila ceramics offer compelling technological and stylistic comparisons with the only other evidence of a developed Palaeolithic ceramic tradition found at the sites of Pavlov I and Dolní Věstonice I, in the Czech Republic, c. 31,000-27,000 cal BP. Because of the 10,000-year gap between the two assemblages, the Vela Spila ceramics are interpreted as evidence of an independent invention of this technology. Consequently, these artifacts provide evidence of a new social context in which ceramics developed and were used to make art in the Upper Palaeolithic.

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Photograph of C1.
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pone-0041437-g006: Photograph of C1.

Mentions: The most complete artifact, designated C1, was identified in 2004 during analysis of artifacts that were excavated during the 2001 season. C1 preserves the torso and foreleg of an animal, perhaps a horse or deer (Figures 5 and 6). The artifact weighs 4.0 grams, and measures 26.0×27.0×9.0 mm. Its excavation context is an excavation layer labeled “12 B (8/4),” which corresponds with Late Upper Palaeolithic Horizon G (LUP-G) (see Figure 3). Five additional ceramics were subsequently found in horizon LUP-G in 2006. C1 is dark brown and has a smooth texture, suggesting it was fired at a relatively high temperature. The head and hindleg have broken off. Pinch marks are visible under the microscope (Figure 7), suggesting individual body parts were molded separately before being joined together.


First Epigravettian ceramic figurines from Europe (Vela Spila, Croatia).

Farbstein R, Radić D, Brajković D, Miracle PT - PLoS ONE (2012)

Photograph of C1.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3404104&req=5

pone-0041437-g006: Photograph of C1.
Mentions: The most complete artifact, designated C1, was identified in 2004 during analysis of artifacts that were excavated during the 2001 season. C1 preserves the torso and foreleg of an animal, perhaps a horse or deer (Figures 5 and 6). The artifact weighs 4.0 grams, and measures 26.0×27.0×9.0 mm. Its excavation context is an excavation layer labeled “12 B (8/4),” which corresponds with Late Upper Palaeolithic Horizon G (LUP-G) (see Figure 3). Five additional ceramics were subsequently found in horizon LUP-G in 2006. C1 is dark brown and has a smooth texture, suggesting it was fired at a relatively high temperature. The head and hindleg have broken off. Pinch marks are visible under the microscope (Figure 7), suggesting individual body parts were molded separately before being joined together.

Bottom Line: Vela Spila ceramics offer compelling technological and stylistic comparisons with the only other evidence of a developed Palaeolithic ceramic tradition found at the sites of Pavlov I and Dolní Věstonice I, in the Czech Republic, c. 31,000-27,000 cal BP.Because of the 10,000-year gap between the two assemblages, the Vela Spila ceramics are interpreted as evidence of an independent invention of this technology.Consequently, these artifacts provide evidence of a new social context in which ceramics developed and were used to make art in the Upper Palaeolithic.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, United Kingdom. rebecca.farbstein@gmail.com

ABSTRACT
Recent finds of 36 ceramic artifacts from the archaeological site of Vela Spila, Croatia, offer the first evidence of ceramic figurative art in late Upper Palaeolithic Europe, c. 17,500-15,000 years before present (BP). The size and diversity of this artistic ceramic assemblage indicate the emergence of a social tradition, rather than more ephemeral experimentation with a new material. Vela Spila ceramics offer compelling technological and stylistic comparisons with the only other evidence of a developed Palaeolithic ceramic tradition found at the sites of Pavlov I and Dolní Věstonice I, in the Czech Republic, c. 31,000-27,000 cal BP. Because of the 10,000-year gap between the two assemblages, the Vela Spila ceramics are interpreted as evidence of an independent invention of this technology. Consequently, these artifacts provide evidence of a new social context in which ceramics developed and were used to make art in the Upper Palaeolithic.

Show MeSH