Prehistoric man went to the open air cinema

Reply Thu 1 Jul, 2010 11:18 am
True or false: The cinema was invented in the late 19th century.

It's only true if you consider the cinema to be artificial projection. It turns out that the original idea behind the cinematic experience, the use of visual and audio means to tell a story, extends back to the Chalcolithic period, commonly called the Copper Age, according to the "Prehistoric Picture Project" being carried out by St. Pölten University of Applied Sciences, the University of Cambridge and the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar.
Copper Age cinema buffs got one thing right long before modern man; they viewed "films" in an open air cinema setting in 3D with surround sound and without those stupid glasses, according to analysis of prehistoric rock engravings which provided an audio-visual experience to people from the time of Ötzi, the prehistoric iceman, to that of Roman Emperor Augustus. The largest European concentration of these engravings can be found in Valcamonica in Northern Italy.

St. Pölten University of Applied Sciences is part of a Cambridge led international project that uses digital media technologies to bring to life the closest experience prehistoric people had to cinema.
The rock-engraved "cinematic scenes" present, among other events, dueling, hunting scenes, houses and dancing people. It is interesting to note that death never appears in the images, and they rarely include women. The scenes - which represent the beginning of narrative art - were produced in the period between 2,500 and 14 BC. Thus, the rock images, which are distributed throughout Europe, extend from the very late Neolithic Age to Roman times. With 200,000 images, the highest concentration of such engravings is found in Val Camonica near the municipalities of Paspardo, Cimbergo, Nadro and Capo di Ponte in the Lombardy region of Northern Italy. New field studies, which form part of the project, are being carried out there in September.


  • Topic Stats
  • Top Replies
  • Link to this Topic
Type: Discussion • Score: 2 • Views: 1,445 • Replies: 4
No top replies

Walter Hinteler
Reply Thu 1 Jul, 2010 11:18 am

Presenting the rock-art of Valcamonica in the new context with modern technology, in terms of “Ambient Cinema” and modern modes of performance.
This will concentrate on making the results and insights gained by the research visible to publics across Europe. In concrete terms this means the creation of an Ambient Cinema film that will premiere at MAA Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, University of Cambridge in the summer 2010. Ambient Cinema is a immersive surround experience developed by Frederick Baker, in which the audience are placed in the centre of a film which surrounds and passes over them.

The 15 film will have 3 levels:

the work of the archaeologists and film makers working on location in the present.

the prehistoric period in which the art was created

a freely interpreted artistic interpretation of the art as a precursor of modern-day graffiti and video art.

The exhibition will have a formal public and press opening in Cambridge in July 2010 to which all project partners and their organisations are welcome.

A shortened version of this ambient film will be installed in the Klangturm in St Pölten in the summer of 2010. The subject of the work will be “aliens from the past and present and future”. The soundtrack will be provided by Astrid Drechsler’s and Christopher Well’s archae-oacoustics.
Other levels of re-presentation will be developed – ranging from academic papers, photographic exhibitions;, audio CDs, and specially created performative events like dance and “projectionism”. Frederick Baker proposes to use the projectionist technique developed for his re-making of the classic film The Third Man to take the images shot in the first phases will be projected back onto their original locations in a performative projectionist work. This work will then be taken into an arts and club context.

Source: MAA Museum of Archaeology & Anthropology, University of Cambridge: Prehistoric Picture Project making ancient rock-art visible

Frederick Baker at wikipedia
0 Replies
Reply Fri 2 Jul, 2010 07:53 pm
Considering that a typical day was 12 hours without electricity I doubt there was much luxury in those days. Food could not be stored either. Those could very well be actual battle scenes and not cinema.
Walter Hinteler
Reply Fri 2 Jul, 2010 10:07 pm
talk72000 wrote:

Considering that a typical day was 12 hours without electricity I doubt there was much luxury in those days. Food could not be stored either.

I'm sure, those people from Cambridge, Weimar and St. Pölten were and are aware of that, too Wink
Reply Tue 6 Jul, 2010 04:30 pm
@Walter Hinteler,
I guess entertainment like sex is also necessary. The mind needs nourishment.
0 Replies

Related Topics

WIND AND WATER - Discussion by Setanta
Who ordered the construction of the Berlin Wall? - Discussion by Walter Hinteler
True version of Vlad Dracula, 15'th century - Discussion by gungasnake
ONE SMALL STEP . . . - Discussion by Setanta
History of Gun Control - Discussion by gungasnake
Where did our notion of a 'scholar' come from? - Discussion by TuringEquivalent
  1. Forums
  2. » Prehistoric man went to the open air cinema
Copyright © 2024 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.04 seconds on 04/17/2024 at 12:58:14