On July 5, a team of researchers from the Georg-August-University Göttingen, Göttingen, Germany, in synergy with the State Heritage Office of Lower Saxony, announced the discovery, in Unicorn Cave in Lower Saxony, of a 51,000-year-old sculpture on a megaloceros deer bone by Neanderthals, regarded as the ultimate proof of their symbolization abilities.
The news was published in the journal Nature Ecology & Evolution .
The sculpture has been interpreted from the discoverers like a very accurate drawing, probably with symbolic valence, fruit of a precise plan of ideation and execution: a decided acknowledgment of the cognitive abilities of the Neanderthals, for a long time considered primitive hominids, and of their creative and communicative ability.

I consider very meaningful the comments of the researchers, that open to the possibility of the existence of three-dimensional art in the Paleolithic.
I think that, if Pietro Gaietto, that to the sculpture of the Paleolithic has dedicated an intense activity of search and study, were still between us, he could make further hypothesis on this object just found.
Personally, with reference to the carved motives and their disposition, I have associated them to the "reticella hairstyle" of the small head of woman, from the Cave of the Prince of the Balzi Rossi and preserved at the Musée d'Archéologie Nationale at Saint-Germain-en-Laye.
So, the sculpture of the Paleolithic arouses new interest and desire of deepening, arousing many questions.

Therefore, in order to favor a greater acquaintance and deepening of the tridimensional Paleolithic art, I have decided to give to the scholars a part of the material collected and studied by Pietro Gaietto, publishing the "Catalogue of the European Paleolithic sculpture - Gaietto Collection" on the Museum of the Origins of Man, both in Italian and in English. For a short outline of the book, published in Shapes in Evolution series, please refer to the Museum website.

In parallel with the very recent review of the Museum of the Origins of Man and of the research material published over the years by Pietro Gaietto on Paleolithic Art Magazine, I have the pleasure to share with the scholars the Introduction to his last book about Prehistory, Origin of Man, published in 2017.

This volume, in the two editions Italian and English, is available, as well as on, also at major international distributors, starting with Amazon.

Licia Filingeri (Editor)

Genova, July, 2021



Copyright©2000-2021 by Paleolithic Art Magazine, all rights reserved.