Wednesday, April 02, 2008
One of the neater aspects of the Paleoanthropology Society meeting (more on that soon, no worries) was a the one-hour "Lascaux Video/Special Presentation" session on Tuesday night. It was organized by the International Committee for the Preservation of Lascaux and drew a fairly sizable crowd of folks interested in hearing about the status of the cave and ongoing efforts to preserve it as best as possible. The presentation included a video montage that detailed some of the recent degradation of the paintings (which I talked about in more detail previously)... that montage was really heart-wrenching, if you care about the site and rock art more generally. It really showed unambiguously the degree to which some paintings have deteriorated and/or been affected by fungus. A petition was circulated during the meeting to encourage the French government to take more serious steps to ensure that Lascaux's art is adequately protected. You can find an online version of the petition here, which doesn't (yet?) include the signatures collected at the meetings. Also, if you're interested in learning more about the committee and ongoing efforts to preserve the paintings, you should definitely visit their "Save Lascaux" web site.