Monday, October 14, 2013

Bhimbetka cave paintings, near Bhopal

The Bhimbetka rock shelters in the Raisen district, Madhya Pradeh, India, have been declared a world heritage site. They contain a large number of paintings, some of which are more than 30,000 years old! The colours used are vegetable dyes, and the ones that have endured have probably done so being so deep inside the caves, or being inside rock niches.
The name Bhimbetka is said to have been derived from Bhima, one of the Pandavas, in the epic Mahabharata, and as per legend, Bhima sat here.
The paintings themselves are supposed to bear a significant resemblance to the Lascaux cave paintings in France. There are clearly scenes of hunting, dancing, and other community activities with large numbers of men, women, animals, birds, weapons and instruments.
It is wonderful that so much has survived of these cave paintings to the modern age, and that they do get shared and talked about from time to time:

Art across eons. Photo: Baaran Ijlal


A sample of rock painting at Bhimbetka.



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