More than 45,500 years ago, perched on a ledge at the back of an Indonesian cave, an artist was at work.
- A painting showing three pigs was discovered in a cave in the Indonesian island of Sulawesi in 2017
- Uranium dating pins the age of the art at a minimum of 45,500 years old
- The researchers suspect the art may be the earliest evidence of modern humans on the island
By flickering firelight, they carefully daubed three Sulawesi warty pigs — one more than a metre long — on the limestone wall using dark red pigment, complete with distinctive facial nubs and a crest of stiff hair, features particular to the species.
Today, these and other preserved paintings have been brought to light in the journal Science Advances.