African Rock Art: Paintings and Engravings on Stone

David Coulson, Author, Alec Campbell, Author, Alec Campbell, Text by (Art/Photo Books)
David Coulson, Author, Alec Campbell, Author, Alec Campbell, Text by (Art/Photo Books) ABRAMS $60 (256p) ISBN 978-0-8109-4363-6
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At the end of the last Ice Age (over 12,000 years ago), artists throughout Africa produced stunning work that survives to this day on boulders and cliffs, and in caves. In African Rock Art: Paintings and Engravings on Stone, Alec Campbell (founder and first director of the National Museum and Art Gallery of Botswana) and photographer David Coulson (coauthor, Namib, The Lost World of the Kalahari) survey the genre with more than 200 color photos and 178 line drawings that detail elements of these complex compositions. From 20-foot giraffes carved into stone in Niger's A r Mountains to a (probably) 6,000-year-old Libyan painting of a hairdressing scene, the photos are hauntingly beautiful. In addition to its considerable contributions to art history and human history the book, with its foreword by the late star paleontologist Mary Leakey, should raise public awareness of the plight of these masterpieces, now endangered by erosion and vandalism. (June)
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