Cave of hands

July 6, 2023

(internet image)

~ The Cave of the Hands is an Argentina Unesco World Heritage Site and impressive archaeological wonder in the Santa Cruz Province of Argentina
~ the interior is detailed with unique rock art dating back to 7370 BC
~ it is believed that the imagery was stenciled onto the walls by cave dwellers, who may have been the ancestors of the historic hunter-gatherer communities of Patagonia
~ imprints of human hands, drawings of guanacos (an animal related to the camel), depictions of hunting scenes, geometric shapes, and more can be found on the near vertical walls
~ there are as many as 800 drawings on the walls of the cave, over 90% of them are hands
~ Interestingly, most of the handprints are of left hands, indicating that the artists were probably stenciling and spraying paint with their right hands

(internet image)

~ it’s hard to know exactly when the cave was first “discovered”, but it was first seen by a monk in 1941
~ it was further explored by researcher Rex Gonzalez in 1949
~ it wasn’t until the late 1960s that archeologists began to study the site in detail

“We don’t know for certain why the Cave of the Hands was made,
but its presence is quite significant to archaeological research.
The artistic compositions represent original evidence
about the Patagonian hunters’ behavior and hunting techniques.
The scenes depicted here have been a focus for archaeologists for more than 25 years,
as they share a snapshot of the culture of the earliest human societies in South America.”

~ the art is said to be hand stenciled using bone-made pipes

source: South America travel

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