Patagonian cave paintings in South America

Patagonian cave paintings in South America

Patagonian cave paintings seen for the first time in South America

With more than 800 different paintings, scientists are just beginning to decipher the secrets of these records in Patagonia
In a discovery that is redefining the understanding of South American prehistory, archaeologists have uncovered what are considered the oldest cave paintings on the continent. Located in Argentine Patagonia, the prehistoric artworks date back to 8,200 years ago.

According to researchers at the University of Buenos Aires, the discovery sheds new light on the ancient societies that once roamed these lands.

A video, released by the news agency Reuters, shows the interior of the cave in great detail. Check it out here.

The research team found the paintings in Cueva Huenul 1. This is a cave that was already known for its archaeological richness, but which until then had not revealed secrets of such magnitude.

Paintings reveal the past of the people of Patagonia
The paintings, which include images of animals and geometric symbols, are a testament to the traditions and daily lives of the ancient people of the region.

“We believe that these images, in particular, were part of a resilient response by the hunter-gatherer groups that occupied this cave and the desert environments of northern Patagonia to the climatic challenge of a period of extreme drought that occurred during the mid-Holocene,” Romero Villanueva, a researcher at Argentina's National Council for Scientific and Technical Research, told Reuters.

What makes this discovery particularly fascinating is the possibility that these paintings served as a means of communication and information for countless generations afterward.

The researcher suggests that images may have been a way of transmitting knowledge and stories. Thus, helping communities face the challenging weather conditions of Patagonia.

This discovery not only pushes back the timeline of rock art in South America. It also highlights the complexity and sophistication of the cultures that inhabited the continent long before the arrival of Europeans.

With more than 800 different paintings grouped together in the cave, scientists are just beginning to decipher the secrets these stone walls have to tell.