A treasure trove of rock art in Bhimbetka- The New Indian Express

by AryanArtnews
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Set in a dense forest, Binbetka is about 45 km from Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh. In 1957, Vishnu S Wakankar was in the limelight when he discovered prehistoric paintings at the natural rock shelter of the Vindhya Range. A fossil of Dickinsonia, a genus of extinct basic animals, has also been found in Binbetka, where the history of life dates back at least 100,000 years. In the 20th century, many prehistoric sites were revealed in some parts of India and elsewhere, but Binbetka stands out in its numerous painting-decorated caves. Seven hills in seven differently named locations, including Binbetka, have 762 rock shelters, more than 400 painted primarily in red or brown natural mineral colors of white and red bricks. Various paintings are on display. The world’s oldest artificial floor made by arranging slabs and walls made by stacking boulders have also been found here. Many paintings date back to 8000 BC, but the rock shelter also includes works from later times, up to the Middle Ages in Indian history.

Bhimbetka’s paintings are categorized into several styles by Wakankar and others. However, in general, early examples show some animals such as bulls, cows, elephants, wild boars, rhinos, deer, various birds, snakes, and people. Almost every person in the painting was monochromatic. In other words, it was drawn in a single color. One style of figure contains a striking contour filled with color, another style is a widely repetitive style with no contour, and the animal figure is a cleaning technique with a single stroke of a brush or other tool. Created using. Bhimbetka’s paintings, like many other similar works in India, are monochromatic, so they are not three-dimensional and look two-dimensional or flat. Still, the appearance of many animals shows a sense of naturalism, with anonymous painters of Binbetka sharply observing the wild stocks around them and thoroughly grasping their shape and behavior before painting. It is clear that you have done it. Many animals have been shown to be stationary. This means that you will see an animal standing firmly on the ground, and some other animals are moving forward or jumping into the air. From time to time, they are shown to chase or attack humans.

In Bimbetka’s paintings, humans are depicted in a thin, straight line, using several lines representing the hands, legs, and torso, and relatively large dots representing the head, which has no further facial features. In the hunting scene, humans appear smaller than animals such as cows. Even wild boars, which are always smaller than humans, have been shown to be much larger than the males hunting them. Such depictions clearly suggest that prehistoric people considered themselves inferior to the power and power of animals. Some animal paintings are classified by scholars as X-ray style works. Because the animal’s body is drawn with various patterns of crosshairs. These patterns are depicted as prey in the hunting sequence, not as tame, and may not represent the decorations made on these animals. Body lines are interpreted to represent internal parts of an animal such as bones, muscles, and intestines. One hunting scene showing about eight naked men chasing a bull is very well known and is frequently recreated in books, essays and postcards related to Bimbetka’s rock art. In some unique examples, the bellies of cows and cows are shown by round or oval lines. This includes the shape of vegetation or fetal calves. Sometimes certain animals are drawn without sticking to the actual shape of the species. One such painting has been interpreted by some scholars as a bovine painting, while others have been interpreted as mythical creatures due to the unusually wide cone-shaped nose of the animal. .. In my opinion, such delimiters were adapted by the Bimbetka artist to emphasize the power of the nose for animals to attack humans. In the picture, an animal actually attacks a very small human and runs away with fear. This clearly suggests that, like so-called X-ray paintings, the painter of Binbetka drew the overall impression of the animal, not just the “study of life” of the animal.

Bimbetka’s paintings of the historic era also depict a dance scene in which a group of people stands hand in hand. People at that time also domesticated several animals, including various cattle and wild elephants. Some unique pieces show that people are balancing on an elephant as if they were not in danger of falling. Medieval paintings show a horse-riding warrior with a sword and a shield. Unlike other prehistoric places, for example in Altamira, Spain and Lascaux, France, Binbetka was inhabited for generations for centuries.


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