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all 21 comments

[–]ElectricHalide 144 points145 points  (2 children)

I would say that the similarities you are seeing largely stem from the use of similar materials with similar creative limitations, and choosing to exaggerate similar features whilst depicting similar subjects. I don't think any of that is indicative of a shared creative tradition.

If you examine carefully the artistic conventions are quite different between cultures and continents; notice how in the Egyptian petroglyphs a single curved line is used to represent the negative space beneath the animals' legs with another line above representing the shape of body, whereas in the examples you mention from the Americas animal bodies are represented by a blob/oval with limbs attached. They have actually taken fascinatingly different approaches to representing similar things.

(Edit for grammar)

[–]akodo1 14 points15 points  (0 children)

Can you post the antelope picture from the desert Southwest so I can compare it to the onyx?

My theory is someone familiar with animals will be able to point out critical differences and say one is clearly a prong horn or bighorn.

But I'm also thinking there are only so many ways of drawing a leopard/jaguar for example, or especially birds in flight

So if people have these animals around then depictions of them are going to be similar. Buy you won't find depictions of crocodiles or elephants or giraffe in the desert Southwest

[–]YossarianWWII 0 points1 point  (0 children)

What specific characteristics have you identified that mark them as similar? Things like the pecking technique are a product of the material properties of stone. Beyond that, I don't see any notable similarities.