• Shalini Guha

Prehistoric Art- Neolithic Era: Brief History of Art and Culture

Updated: Jun 30, 2020

Where were we? Prehistoric Art in the Mesolithic Era?

If you remembered, you are right. Did you imagine how it would have been to experience the transition period of the earliest existence of Art?

Now, moving to the next one..... Neolithic Era.......

Prehistoric Art: Neolithic Era

Neolithic, also called New Stone Age, final stage of Cultural Revolution among prehistoric humans. It was characterized by tools made of stones, shaped by polishing or grinding, dependence on plants or animals, settlement in permanent villages, and the appearance of such crafts as pottery and weaving. The beginning of the Neolithic age is a matter of much debate but it is observed to have begun about 9500 BCE in the villages of Southern Asia. However, there is no single date that marks the beginning of the Neolithic, since agriculture became established at different times in different parts of the world.

Mentioned below the approx time period of Neolithic age in the different regions known to exist:-

  • In Africa, Near East, South-East Asia, it lasted from 8,000 to 2,500 BCE

  • In Southeast Europe, it lasted from 7,000 to 2,500 BCE

  • In East Asia, it lasted from 6,000 to 2,000 BCE

  • In Central Europe, it lasted from 5,500 to 2,000 BCE

  • In Northern/Western Europe, the Neolithic lasted from 4,000 to 1,800 BCE

  • In the now American region, it lasted from 2,500 BCE to about 500 CE

Neolithic Art:-

Ancient pottery including Terracotta Sculpture was the major art form of the Neolithic, although human creativity of the age expressed itself in a good many different types of art, including prehistoric engravings and hand stencils, as well as a variety of mobiliary art. In addition, the construction of religious temples, shrines and tombs and led to the development of megalithic art and a form of monumental stone architecture using megaliths.

Ceramic art is art made from ceramic materials, including clay. It may take forms including artistic pottery, including tableware, tiles, figurines and other sculpture. The word "ceramics" comes from the Greek keramikos , meaning "pottery", which in turn comes from keramos, meaning "potter's clay"

In the Near East, it is usually separated into four periods: the Hassuna Period (7,000-6,500 BCE), The Halaf Period (6,500-5,500 BC), the Ubaid period (5,500-4,000 BC), and the Uruk perod (4,000-3,100 BC).

A more static domestic existence created a huge demand for aesthetic decoration and embellishment. As a result, crafts were developed as well as various forms of decorative art and design. Murals began to appear in houses; as did small statues, and patterns for pottery and textiles.

  • Megalithic Architecture: The development of religious belief systems and the worship of deities led to the gradual emergence of monumental religious architecture for shrines and tombs.

  • Rock Art: The Neolithic era is characterized by outdoor rock art, including Petroglyphs and a diminishing amount of cave painting, notably hand stencils and other pictographs and Petrograms.

Major Centers of Neolithic Art and Crafts:-

Prehistoric Art is the beginning of Art in the earliest of times we know of. We research and discover a new fact, a new truth of this world in almost every hunt for knowledge and learn history. We are still in the beginning, our journey to know our Art just started.

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