Describe what was most important to people during the age of cave paintings (the cave of Lascaux, the cave of Chauvet Pont D'Arc) and Venus statues (the Woman from Willendorf).  Specific works of art are the statue called the Woman from Willendorf, the paintings in the cave of Lascaux and the cave of Chauvet Pont D'Arc. 

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Survival.  Nearly half of the paintings in the caves of Lascaux in France featured bulls, bison, stags, and many horses, emblematic of the need to hunt.  Similarly, the paintings at Chauvet Pont D'Arc, also in France (which at present are the oldest known cave paintings and probably date to 35000 years ago) contain images of these hunting animals, but also, interestingly, predators such as lions, bears and panthers.  The Venus statues, such as the Willendorf woman are typically thought to be fertility symbols, pointing again to the Paleolithic preoccupation with simple survival and in the case of fertility, the need to reproduce and ensure that the species continues. It is interesting to contemplate that even the earliest of peoples, whose days were likely consumed with the procuring of subsistence, had a need for a creative outlet, and found it by creating colors such as the red ochre that is so predominant in the cave paintings--and then expressing themselves artistically.     

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