Bradshaw Foundation - Latest News

BRADSHAW FOUNDATION - LATEST NEWS

 

The Great Murals of Baja California

02 Mar 2015
Share on Facebook


The Great Murals of Baja California; the explorer, author and photographer Harry W. Crosby discovers and documents the region's rock art and prehistoric paintings of humans, animals and symbols.

rock art of Baja California

In the sierras of central Baja California, hidden in most forbidding terrain, thousands of brilliant paintings survive in caves and shelters. Here a prehistoric people created giant images, heroic assemblages of men and animals. The Painters' time passed, they laid down their brushes and disappeared, their art was lost to sight, and their existence was reduced to the breath of a legend.

map of Baja California

This legend was given new life by one person in particular; the explorer, author and photographer Harry W. Crosby. Expeditions on horse-back in the 1960's and 1970's with local guides led to his publication The Cave Paintings of Baja California - Discovering the Great Murals of an Unknown People, Sunbelt Publications, 1997. And it is this book that led to our section on the rock art of Baja California.

The Great Mural Rock Art of Baja California consists of prehistoric paintings of humans and other animals, often larger than life-size, on the walls and ceilings of natural rock shelters. They are protected under UNESCO World Heritage status.

The rock art may be either monochrome or polychrome. Red and black were the colors most frequently used, but white, pink, orange, and green also occur.

The most common figures are humans and deer, but a variety of other animals, such as rabbits, bighorn sheep, birds, fish, and snakes are also represented. The human images often include stylized headdresses. Many of the images are overlain with depictions of projectiles, presumably arrows or atlatl darts.

The images are essentially silhouettes, without representational details inside their outlines. Instead, geometrical patterns such as stripes or bands of different colors are used. Overpainting is very common. 

And the artists? The Great Murals lie within the ethnohistoric territory of the Cochim, and they have been commonly linked with the late prehistoric Comond Complex. Archaeological research is adding to the full story behind the rock art; recent radiocarbon studies, both on materials recovered from archaeological deposits in the rock shelters and on materials in the paintings themselves, have suggested that the Great Murals may be 7,500 years old. As with all rock art, the purpose remains a matter of speculation; hunting magic, warfare, shamanic trace, or perhaps ancestor veneration.

 Visit the Great Murals of Baja California in our American Rock Art Archive:

http://www.bradshawfoundation.com/baja/index.php

 

COMMENTS

 
FACEBOOK UPDATES
** Like Page below to receive our articles on Facebook **
LATEST NEWS ARTICLES
 
LATEST ROCK ART
17 Apr 2015
LATEST CAVE PAINTINGS
LATEST PALEOANTHROPOLOGY
LATEST ARCHAEOLOGY
20 May 2015
LATEST ANTHROPOLOGY
15 Apr 2015
27 Mar 2015
LATEST WORLD HERITAGE
Bradshaw FoundationAboutiShopBook ReviewSite MapMailing ListDonateFacebookTwitterContact
If you have enjoyed visiting this section of the website please consider adding a link
Bradshaw Foundation © MMXI
Homepage About the Foundation Contact Us Facebook News Articles Twitter List of Research Papers Professor Stephen Oppenheimer Travel Index About the Expeditions Forthcoming Expeditions Bespoke Expeditions Enquire Practical Information History of Exploration Welcome to the iShop Film Downloads DVD's Sculpture Prints Clothing Messenger Bag eBooks INORA Downloads About iLecture Films Shipping & Handling iLectures In Conversation Video Stories Travel Films Read the reviews Join the free Mailing List Bradshaw Foundation Facebook Friends of the Foundation Archive Index World's Oldest Rock Art Africa Documentary Films South Africa RARI Giraffe Carvings Niger Namibia Western Central Africa Africa Paintings Gallery Tanzania The Tuareg People Tuareg Salt Caravans Gilf Kebir Archive Index San Rock Art Paintings San Bushman San Rock Art Film Origins Centre Johannesburg Archive Index Arizona Baja California Baja California Film Coso Range Talking Stone Film Nevada Oregon Territory Australia Archive Index Introduction Bradshaw Paintings Kimberley Region The Unambal Hugh Brown Leif Thiele Gallery Dan Clark Grahame Walsh Ian Wilson Bradshaws / Gwion Gwion Archive Index Introduction Origins of the British Stonehenge Sounds of Stonehenge The British Museum British Isles Megaliths Gower Peninsula Rock Art Mendip Hills Prehistory Northumberland Rock Art Red Lady of Paviland Stone Age Mammoth Abattoir Archive Index Huashan Rock Art Yinchuan Museum Rock Art Festival Field Trip Gallery Itinerant Creeds Inner Mongolia & Ningxia Vanishing Civilization Life in Rock Art (PDF) Tibet Tibet Photographs Dazu Rock Carvings Tiger Motif Archive Index Chauvet Cave Lascaux Cave Niaux Cave Cosquer Cave Portable Art Research Paper Tuc d'Audoubert Bison Dr. Jean Clottes Index UNESCO World Heritage Introduction Cave Paintings Gallery Visiting the Chauvet Cave Return to Chauvet Cave Investigating the Cave Venus & Sorcerer Werner Herzog Film Chauvet Publications India Archive Index Rock Art Central India Pachmarhi Hills India Rock Art Gallery Middle East Archive Index Middle East Inroduction Rock Art of Iran Rock Art of Saudi Arabia United Arab Emirates Rock Art Ancient Geometry Middle East Colonisation Tanum Rock Art Museum Thor Heyerdahl Archive Index Introduction America's Oldest Art? Pedra Furada Bolivian Rock Art Campeche Island - Brazil Checta Petroglyphs - Peru Cueva de las Manos Santa Catarina Island - Brazil Rock Art in Britain Campeche Rock Art Petroglyphs El Salvador - Corinto Cave Hand Rock Art Paintings Tibetan Rock Art United Arab Emirates Uzbekistan Yinchuan Rock Art Museum Introduction Ice Age Art Gallery Claire Artemyz Jill Cook Interview Cycladic Introduction Cycladic Gallery Introduction Geometric Signs Chart Research Methodology Geometric Signs in France Sign Types/Countries/Regions Bibliography Ancient Symbols in Rock Art Newsletter Archive Download Issues Introduction Genetic Map Professor Stephen Oppenheimer Further Reading Origins of the British BBC Documentary Origins Index Origins Overview 13 Big Questions Stanley Ambrose Homo Floresiensis Herto Skulls Homo Dmanisi Liujiang Skull Introduction Sentinels in Stone Easter Island Rock Art Birdman Cult / Motif Sea & Marine Creatures Design & Motifs Dr Georgia Lee Easter Island Map Contemporary Art Glossary Conclusion Thor Heyerdahl Introduction When & Who Built It? How Was It Built? The Area Sounds of Stonehenge Meaning of a Pyramid Pyramid Studies Pyramid Superstructure Pyramid Substructure Pyramid Preparations Pyramid Building Saqqara Nabil Swelim Temples of Malta and Gozo Research in the Caucasus The Keselo Foundation Homo Dmanisi Ancient Toolmakers Index Introduction Descent into the Cave The Decorated Caves Shamanistic Experience Spring Initiation Rites Summary Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Professor John P. Miller Motif: Eternal Index Han Meilin Bruce Radke Christian Tuki Gordon Ellis-Brown Site Map Search the Website Glossary of Terms & Definition Podcast on iTunes Other Websites Contact the Foundation