S10-11 02

Prehistory art as ecological art


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Agueda Asenjo BejaranoUniversidad Complutense de Madrid



Art and nature have always found ways to intersect with one another, and be a huge source of inspiration for artists, but it was only much later that the artist became aware of the environment’s fragility. Art subsequently became the preferred medium to express this. Nature began to be depicted beyond pure aestheticism, as art and nature found themselves at the heart of this political battle. In fact, nature’s deterioration has profoundly changed the relationship between artists and the landscape. With this paper, I invite you to discover how combining art and nature Altamira can be turned into an ecological and environmental 21th century art piece.


Get the public an abstract image of all this concepts and try to make a coordination between two art periods that, even if they are centuries apart, they share same ideas and opinions.


In situ art is the preferred process for land art, a movement that attempts to create works directly in the natural environment. The landscape’s natural elements become the very material of production, since these works are made of materials such as rock, earth and sand. Many believe that this combination of art and nature ought to be considered as an experience rather than according to their market value. This way of artistic practices were turned upside down from 1969 to 1970. Many artists began to think beyond the traditional venues of galleries, museums and studios. Similar to the Impressionists at their time – who left their studios to paint outdoors – American artists abandoned galleries in favor of large, isolated and natural spaces. Subsequently, a transition began to occur, as the abandonment of enclosed spaces became synonymous with regained freedom. The emergence of site-specific land art marked a true turning point. And all these concepts is what we found in prehistory art: caves located in the middle of the mountains. Full of vegetation and animals, making a connection between art, nature, introspection and creation. The paintings that were created millions of years ago is a complex interrelationships of our environment with ourselves and ecological systems. This artists created works that employed natural materials or engage with environmental forces such as rocks, water, natural pigments. They made an ecological relationship (taking into consideration terms of 21st century) through their own ways of believing and connection with the earth.


Therefore, the purpose of Ecological Art or Prehistory art is to produce plastic emotions in the viewer who faces a certain landscape or creation, even if they have different proposes. Is to alter, with an artistic sense, to produce the maximum of effects and sensations to the observer. It is intended to reflect the relationship between humans and the Earth, the environment and the world. The main thing is the interaction of the human-artist with the environment.

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    • profile avatar

      Ignacio Asenjo Fernández

      Comentó el 28/09/2023 a las 08:29:51

      Good morning.

      A very surprising investigation. It is very attractive to establish the relationship between prehistoric art, contemporary art and ecological art articulating it with sustainability. Congratulations.

      Thank you and best regards

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