Last night while I was at critique group, Gary saw Cave of Forgotten Dreams, Werner Herzog's amazing 3D movie about Paleolithic art in Chauvet, a cave in southern France. Discovered in 1994, the walls of Chauvet are covered with rhinos, mammoths, bison, lions, horses and handprints painted from 20 to 30,000 years ago.
Chauvet is zealously protected (as it should be), so not open to public view, but there are many other similar sites in southern France. Gary and I went on a Paleolithic art spelunking trip several years ago. Looking at these rich images, knowing what it took to survive the day in that era, the necessity of art is profoundly evident. It made me look at my own artistic existence with an entirely new heart. The creative energy and spirit of the caves has never left me.