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Cave of Forgotten Dreams
World Magazine ^ | Harris

Posted on 05/17/2011 8:45:28 AM PDT by flowerplough

In a film that blends paleontological wonders with existential pondering, Cave of Forgotten Dreams asks the question, "What constitutes humanness?" German director Werner Herzog creeps deep into Chauvet Cave in southern France, where researchers say they have found the earliest known cave paintings. The charcoal paintings etched on the curved walls of the cave—some say from 32,000 B.C., others say 10,000 B.C.—look as though someone scratched them there last week.

A landslide sealed the cave thousands of years ago, creating a perfectly preserved time capsule until explorers discovered it in 1994. Only a few scientists are allowed inside, and Herzog labored under a set of strict rules to preserve the cave's delicate environment. He had to use battery-powered cameras and lights that did not give off heat. The film crew was forbidden to step off a 2-foot-wide walkway and could only stay in the cave for a few hours at a time. Despite the logistical difficulties, the film is a cinematic tour de force. Herzog uses light and shadow to create the illusion of a flickering torch on a cave wall, just as the painters would have seen it long ago. The filming elevates 3D to true artistry, giving shape and depth to the curves and contours of the cave wall. The paintings are more fluid and full of life and movement than medieval paintings thousands of years later.

There's a sense that these ancestors were not the hulking, empty-headed cavemen often portrayed but souls with the urge to communicate and represent the wonders of their world. The paleontologists and archaeologists approach the paintings with awe, dreaming about the lives and hopes of the people who created them. "It is," says narrator Herzog, "as if the modern human soul had awakened here."

(Excerpt) Read more at worldmag.com ...


TOPICS: Arts/Photography; History
KEYWORDS: cave; caveart; cavepainting; chauvet; chauvetpontdarc; france; godsgravesglyphs; macroetymology; paleosigns
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French govt's official(?) cave website: http://www.culture.gouv.fr/culture/arcnat/chauvet/en/
1 posted on 05/17/2011 8:45:29 AM PDT by flowerplough
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To: flowerplough
I've enjoyed Hertzog’s work, I will have to see this
2 posted on 05/17/2011 8:50:55 AM PDT by NativeSon
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To: NativeSon

Even added a ‘t’ to his name I like that much


3 posted on 05/17/2011 8:52:20 AM PDT by NativeSon
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To: SunkenCiv; blam

Ping


4 posted on 05/17/2011 8:57:12 AM PDT by patton (I am sure that I have done dumber things in my life, but at the moment, I am unable to recall them.)
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To: flowerplough

29,000 BC was only a trillion seconds ago.


5 posted on 05/17/2011 8:57:12 AM PDT by Jacquerie
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To: NativeSon

My good deed for the day, then. And to enjoying Herzog’s work; wish I could remember where I read that the artist’s highest hurdle is “delight”. Artists might confront, or shock, or explore, or inform, but the real artists attempt to share, and delight.


6 posted on 05/17/2011 8:57:42 AM PDT by flowerplough (Thomas Sowell: Those who look only at Obama's deeds tend to become Obama's critics.)
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To: NativeSon

“z” in german is pronounced “ts”, as in “rats”.

OBTW, “Herzog” means “warlord”. It is an actual german office - in war, the Herzog rules.


7 posted on 05/17/2011 8:59:59 AM PDT by patton (I am sure that I have done dumber things in my life, but at the moment, I am unable to recall them.)
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To: Jacquerie

Pretty close! 29699 BC was a trillion seconds ago.

We’ve come on a lot in the last trillion seconds - no doubt about it. But alas, much of our art does not delight. Government funding will do that.


8 posted on 05/17/2011 9:18:34 AM PDT by agere_contra ("Debt is the foundation of destruction" : Sarah Palin.)
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To: flowerplough
It is definitely good to read a thread that doesn't make my blood boil once in a while... Delight, yes, “Encounters at the End of the World” would fit that (IMHO)
9 posted on 05/17/2011 10:14:31 AM PDT by NativeSon
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To: patton
the Herzog rules

awesome, did not know that.

Once upon a time I was able hold a decent conversation in what I believe was considered hoch Deutsch. Half my family is German/English

10 posted on 05/17/2011 10:20:46 AM PDT by NativeSon
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To: NativeSon

Yeah, once upon a time I could converse in German, too.

Language - use it or lose it.


11 posted on 05/17/2011 10:25:46 AM PDT by patton (I am sure that I have done dumber things in my life, but at the moment, I am unable to recall them.)
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To: flowerplough

bump for later


12 posted on 05/17/2011 10:28:26 AM PDT by goldfinch
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To: NativeSon
"It is definitely good to read a thread that doesn't make my blood boil once in a while... Delight, yes, “Encounters at the End of the World” would fit that (IMHO) "

Ancient Encounters is a pretty good book.

13 posted on 05/17/2011 11:32:13 AM PDT by blam
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To: patton; StayAt HomeMother; Ernest_at_the_Beach; 1010RD; 21twelve; 24Karet; 2ndDivisionVet; 31R1O; ..

· GGG managers are SunkenCiv, StayAt HomeMother, and Ernest_at_the_Beach ·
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Thanks patton.

Hey, typing that is kinda neat. "Thanks patton." Great nick.

To all -- please ping me to other topics which are appropriate for the GGG list.
 

· History topic · history keyword · archaeology keyword · paleontology keyword ·
· Science topic · science keyword · Books/Literature topic · pages keyword ·


14 posted on 05/17/2011 6:32:02 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (Thanks Cincinna for this link -- http://www.friendsofitamar.org)
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To: SunkenCiv

Thanks for the ping, SC. Wife and I saw the previews for this movie about 3 weeks ago at a theater in Bethesda, MD and it looked fascinating. We will certainly see it...


15 posted on 05/17/2011 7:05:22 PM PDT by Pharmboy (What always made the state a hell has been that man tried to make it heaven-Hoelderlin)
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To: Jacquerie
29,000 BC was only a trillion seconds ago.

If I had a dollar for every one of those seconds, I could pay off 1/14 of the national debt.

One fourteenth hardly seems worth it. I'll just keep the trillion dollars.

16 posted on 05/17/2011 7:42:27 PM PDT by seowulf ("If you write a whole line of zeroes, it's still---nothing"...Kira Alexandrovna Argounova)
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To: SunkenCiv
Chauvet cave images
17 posted on 05/17/2011 7:57:57 PM PDT by wendy1946
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To: flowerplough

This is one movie that I truly want to see in 3-D. I heard an interview with Herzog about this - what a challenge to film.


18 posted on 05/17/2011 10:31:06 PM PDT by worst-case scenario (Striving to reach the light)
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To: Pride in the USA

Sounds like a film you would enjoy!


19 posted on 05/17/2011 11:43:22 PM PDT by lonevoice (Where the Welfare State is on the march, the Police State is not far behind)
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To: lonevoice

You are right. I have to see this film.


20 posted on 05/18/2011 5:24:21 PM PDT by Pride in the USA
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