Photographer's Note

UNESCO World Heritage Siter
Location Montignac, Francer
Part of Prehistoric Sites and Decorated Caves of the Vézère Valleyr
Inscription 1979 (3rd session)
Coordinates 45°03′13″N 1°10′12″

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September 12, 1940, 18-year-old Marcel Ravida was discovered at the entrance to the Lascaux Cave when his dog, Robot, fell into a hole. Ravidat returned to the scene with his three friends, Jacques Mars, Georges Agnel and Simon Coencas. They entered the cave through a 15-meter-deep (50-foot) mine, which they believe could be a legendary secret flight to the nearby Lascaux mansion. [8] [9] [10] Teenagers discovered that the cave wall was depicted by animals. Galleries that refer to continuity, context, or simply depict a cave were given names. These include the Bulls Hall, the Passage, the Axis, the Ship, the Apse, and the Felines Chamber. They returned with Abbot Henri Breuil on September 21, 1940; Breuil would make many sketches of the cave, some of which are now used as study material due to the extraordinary deterioration of many paintings. Breuil was accompanied by Denis Peyrony, curator of Les Eyzies (Museum of Prehistory) of Les Eyzies, Jean Bouyssonie and Dr. Cheynier.rnrnThe cave complex was opened to the public on July 14, 1948, and initial archaeological excavations began a year later, focusing on the axis. By 1955, carbon dioxide, heat, humidity, and other contaminants produced by 1,200 visitors a day had visibly damaged the paintings. As the air deteriorated, fungi and lichens increasingly penetrated the walls. Consequently, the cave was closed to the public in 1963, the paintings were restored to their original condition, and a system of daily surveillance was introduced.

Lascaux IV is a new copy of all the painted areas of the cave, which are part of the Center International de l’Art Pariétal. Since December 2016, this larger and more accurate copy, which integrates digital technology into the display, will be presented by a new museum built by Snøhetta on the hill overlooking Montignac.

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Additional Photos by Csaba Witz (csabagaba) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 617 W: 172 N: 1499] (7018)
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