NEWS

Autism and Prehistoric art related news

Cognitive / genetic basis of art
« on: April 03, 2004, 06:24:35 PM » (This was posted by me on PALANTH FORUM)

In a post reviewing the excellent book by Jean-François Dortier "L'homme cet étrange animal",  I mentionned how insightful that book had been for me.

Doing some internet research on the basis of a new piece of information the author was providing, I've found several papers on "artistic birds" : the Bowerbirds from Australia.

These birds demonstrate an innate capability for what we intellectually call art : a production from various available elements of an aesthetic assemblage, with a purposeful choice of material and colours.
(see excerpts from Nova just for illustration : http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/bowerbirds/art.html)

More scientific papers can be retrieved searching for Gerald Borgia and Bowerbird.

This link between art and birds means that some aesthetic capabilities were somewhat "harwired" in our cognitive abilities long before primates appeared on Earth and that some primates kept their genetic pool, while others lost it...

In a post, dated of April 4th 2004,(On PALANTH FORUM) on the Human Evolutionary Biology, I have pointed to some fascinating articles about the amazing similarities between birds and human genetic predispositions for learning languages. We seem to be facing the same phénomenon :

Capabilities, here with language learning, that were somewhat "harwired" in our cognitive abilities long before primates appeared on Earth and that some primates kept their genetic pool, while others lost it...

This relates with my hypothesis about the apparition of art which could be mainly linked to some innate "Savant skills" rather than on a steady evolutionary process. (See the discussion on  "Radical or progressive evolution" in this same forum).

I find these research results fascinating...