Copies have been made regularly throughout history. The reproduction of cave art is possible too. Although missing the specific symbolic connections it had for its true creators, art, thus reproduced, conserves its aesthetic value and transcends its past in order to communicate emotion here in the present.
This exhibition proposes an immersion in the methods used for the reproduction of cave art through the media of drawing, photography, facsimiles, and virtual reality—varied methods indicating a line through time in which technique and the dissemination of knowledge go hand in hand.
The path taken by the exhibition is organised around a driving chronological thread. At the same time, it makes possible an appreciation of the evolution of processes of reproduction employing techniques that become more and more sophisticated and innovative.
The exhibition begins with the earliest-known reproduction of cave art: the pastel drawing of the polychrome roof of the Cave of Altamira, created by the French painter Paul Ratier in 1879. Following this, further examples from the nineteenth century are displayed, especially of the caves of the south of France, the initial purpose of which was to demonstrate to scientists of the era the pre-historic origins of these expressions.
The Art of Art Reproduction is an exhibition realised through the collaboration of the Museum of Altamira with the Pôle international de la Préhistoire (Les Eyzies de Tayac-Sirueil, Dordogne).