martes, 22 de marzo de 2016

Art of Prehistoric Times: Rock Paintings from the Frobenius Collection



‘Art of Prehistoric Times: Rock Paintings from the Frobenius Collection’ is at Martin-Gropius-Bau, Berlin, until 16 May.

“The art of the twentieth century has already come under the influence of the great tradition of prehistoric rock art” Alfred Barr, Director of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), 1937

In addition to the art of the “primitives” (the term used for indigenous peoples at the time) and the “naives” (children and the mentally ill), the quest for original, unspoilt forms of expression in the 1920s and ‘30s gave rise to a third, often neglected source of inspiration for the development of modern art: prehistoric art, particularly the oldest human art tradition, rock art. Around 100 samples, including many large, wall-sized copies from the Frobenius Institute, as well as photographic and archive material, depict the epic history of rock-art documentation in European caves, the central Sahara, the savannahs of Zimbabwe, and the Australian outback. This exhibition examines the impact of these never-before-seen images on modernity, and the manner in which they have inspired artists. [...] Berliner Festspiele / Link 2

3/13. Stag hunt Spain, Valltorta, Cueva Mas d’en Josep, 8,000-3,000 B.C.,
Watercolour by Alf Bayrle, 1934 © Frobenius-Institute Frankfurt am Main

II Encuentro de Prehistoria de Lucena: La extinción Neandertal




Después de la experiencia tenida el año pasado en el I Encuentro, la Fundación ha organizado una nueva Edición para los días 16 y 17 de Abril de 2016.

El tema versará sobre la extinción de los Neandertales.

La dinámica consistirá en un primer día de charlas de la mano de nuestros expertos... Más información


Actualización: Analizan la extinción del hombre de Neandertal - Diario Córdoba
Habrá un ciclo de conferencias y una visita a la sima de la Cueva del Angel

JUAN A. FERNANDEZ. Lucena celebra este fin semana un nuevo Encuentro con la Prehistoria, que tendrá lugar en el Palacio Erisana y examinará las claves que marcaron la extinción del hombre de Neandertal. El encuentro fue presentado ayer por el concejal de Cultura y Patrimonio, Manuel Lara Cantizani, y Cecilio Barroso, director del proyecto. Esta edición contará con varias ponencias con destacados expertos y una jornada de puertas abiertas a la sima de la Cueva del Angel.

El sábado, tras el acto de bienvenida por el alcalde, Juan Pérez, Carlos Lorenzo hablará sobre el origen y la evolución de los neandertales, incidiendo en las diferencias anatómicas con los homínidos. A las 11.30, Bienvenido Martínez, director del yacimiento de Orce, disertará sobre los neandertales y la extinción de la megafauna cuaternaria. A las 12.30 horas, Javier Baena disertará sobre El final de una vieja historia: el ocaso de la tecnología neandertal . Las actividades se retomarán por la tarde con la conferencia de Miguel Caparrós titulada Sur de Iberia: ¿refugio de los últimos neandertales? , incidiendo en Gibraltar como último lugar en que habitaron.

La extinción de los neandertales: la historia de una obsesión científica será el tema que desarrollará Antonio Monclova. Tras un breve descanso, Manuel Pimentel, director del programa de televisión Arqueomanía , moderará una mesa redonda. La jornada de puertas abiertas a la sima de la Cueva del Angel se realizará el domingo 17 a partir de las diez de la mañana. Hay que tener en cuenta que el aforo para esta actividad es limitado (dos grupos de 25 personas). Los interesados pueden reservar una plaza enviando un correo electrónico a la dirección fundacion.ipehgmail.com . Tienen preferencia para dicha visita quienes hayan realizado la inscripción.

Cecilio Barroso ha destacado que la extinción de los neandertales es un tema de palpitante actualidad, motivo por el que se ha escogido para esta edición, dado que supone toda una incógnita.

Finalmente, Manuel Lara ha resaltado la labor del Instituto de Investigación de Prehistoria y Evolución Humana, entidad que es responsable de la organización de estos actos.

Scientists Recreate How Neanderthals May Have Butchered Birds for Jewelry


3/4. Image credit: 
Matteo Romandini, University of Ferrara

Once thought of as thick-browed brutes, Neanderthals have been getting more credit for their intellect lately. Recent evidence suggests that our extinct cousins, Homo neanderthalensis, buried their dead, used tools, and perhaps could speak. Neanderthals may have also accessorized with raptor feathers and talons—and, according to new research, they went through great pains to do so.

To get inside the Neanderthal mind, Matteo Romandini, an anthropologist at the University of Ferrara in Italy, has been butchering birds for himself. Romandini and his team have found that it takes considerable effort to fashion an eagle claw for a necklace or collect feathers from a griffon wing, as Neanderthals may have in the past. They recently published the results of their experimental archaeology in Quaternary International.

Neanderthals, the closest extinct relatives of humans (their DNA can be found in many of us today), lived in Europe and western Asia from about 400,000 years ago until they mysteriously vanished about 40,000 years ago. At some prehistoric campsites, like the Krapina rock shelter in Croatia and Fumane Cave in northern Italy, researchers have found the remains of raptors alongside Neanderthals’ fossil record of skeletons and stone tools. Deliberate cut marks on these bird bones and claws suggest that Neanderthals exploited birds—not just to get bird meat for food, but to collect bird feathers and claws for personal adornment. [...] Mental Floss

A golden age of ancient DNA science begins


A reconstruction of a male our evolutionary cousin the Neanderthals (Modified from an image by Cicero Moraes). Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA

If I had taken a straw poll among anthropologists 10 years ago asking them how far genetic research would come in the next decade, I doubt anyone would have come close to predicting the big impact fossil DNA work would come to have.

Back then, this nascent field was bogged down with fundamental issues like distinguishing authentic DNA from contamination. Simply recovering enough nuclear DNA to say anything sensible at all about human origins would have been a really big achievement.

But following some remarkable technical developments in that time, including next generation sequencing, ancient DNA research is beginning to come of age.

And it’s no exaggeration to say that it’s dramatically rewriting our understanding of the human evolutionary story and, unexpectedly, resolving some old, seemingly intractable, questions along the way.

I say ‘beginning’ because despite the remarkable findings over the last half decade or so, many of which I have written about before, ancient DNA, particularly fossil genome research, has really only just begun.

But, boy, what start! [...] theconversation.com