The Swabian Jura is a unique archaeological landscape in which the oldest evidence for mobile art has been discovered. After several decades of research there are now over 50 carved figurines made of ivory and bone as well as eight flutes. All these artefacts come from caves and are 43,000 to 35,000 years old. They belong into the time of the so-called Aurignacian, an archaeological culture which existed during the Ice Age.
Ice Age fauna - large and small
Most of the so far discovered art objects depict fauna of an Ice Age "steppe-tundra" landscape - mammoth, bison, horse, cave lion or cave bear. However, in addition to this megafauna there are also depictions of smaller animals - a water fowl, a fish and presumably a hedgehog.
Humans, hybrids, music
Something special are the depictions of humans as well as human-animal hybrid beings. World famous are the "Venus from Hohle Fels", which is the oldest female figurine of its kind, and the "Lion Man" from Hohenstein Stadel Cave, an upright standing hybrid creature of a human and a lion.
This particular ensemble of Ice Age art is rounded out through the discovery of eigth flutes. They are the direct evidence that the earliest modern humans in central Europe did not only produce mobile art but also made music.