Our Research Questions

The engravings are best viewed at an oblique angle with the help of a torch. This will illuminate their essence.

Try another slider – drag it from right to left to reveal the images:

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Plaquette 146 from Gönnersdorf. This plaquetted features parts of a mammoth outlined in black, with its striated coat, and a horse (in orange) “walking” towards the right with only its back half remaining intact. Again here, the orange could stimulate ochre staining, the black potentially charcoal pigmentation. Sadly, no evidence of such staining inside the engravings have been discovered to date.

Our main Research Avenues:

Overall, we question how people functioned in their lifespaces, and how the mechanics of routine actions interacted with the creation and function of Palaeolithic art.

Our aim is to understand the visual and haptic roles that engraved “art” plaquettes played in household environments during the Upper Palaeolithic.

The RTI Viewer Software enables us to study the art under different lighting conditions. It also means we do not need to handle the artefacts too much, aiding in their prolonged preservation.

We are changing our online perception experiment each month – check back in:



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This project is made possible through the following partners:

AHRC DFG Research Grant (AH/V002899/1)