of Dolni Vestonice, the world's oldest clay-fired sculpture. Made
in the Czech Republic, it is one of the Venus
figurines from the era of Gravettian
art. The Dolni Vestonice site in the Moravian Basin is also the location
of the first known pottery kiln. For more details, see: Prehistoric
Art Timeline (from 2.5 million BCE). For the earliest
art, please see our list of the Oldest
Stone Age Art during prehistory.
European era of Solutrean art
The first Chinese pottery
- Xianrendong Cave pottery
- from Jiangxi. Oldest Asian art.
Yuchanyan Cave pottery
is created in the Yangzi River Basin. See: Chinese
Vela Spila pottery,
Vela Luka, Korcula Island, Croatia.
European era of Magdalenian
art (ends 10,000).
Earliest known examples of Japanese Jomon
pottery - discovered at Odaiyamamoto I site, Aomori Prefecture,
Japan - usher in the lengthy Jomon Period of
Japanese art, named after the rope (jo) patterns (mon) on its
Incipient Jomon Japanese pottery: mostly deep cooking containers with
pointed bottoms, and cord marks.
Pottery-making spreads to the Russian Far East - see Amur
River Basin Pottery.
Pots from Gasya site, Amur River basin, Russia.
Fukui Cave ceramics, Japan (Incipient Jomon).
Gromatukha pots on the Zeya River, Amur region.
Goncharka ceramics, Amur River region.
Clay-fired pots found in the Trans-Baikal province in southern Siberia,
Russia: at Ust-Kyakhta (dating to 11,900 BCE), Ust-Karenga (11,800 BCE)
and Studenoye 11,250 BCE.
Era of Paleolithic art
gives way to Mesolithic art.
Pottery-making begins in sub-Saharan Africa, namely at Ounjougou, in Central
Nanzhuangtou Chinese Culture based in southern Hebei. See: Chinese
Era of Neolithic art begins
in many countries. Oldest items of Iranian pottery made. See Ancient
Persian Art (from 3500 BCE). Beginning of Initial Jomon pottery (ends
5000 BCE): vessels increase in size and become more decorated, reflecting
a more settled style of life. Introduction of undulating rims and flat
Earliest known examples of Korean pottery - from the Jelmun period. See:
Pengtoushan Chinese Neolithic Culture, Northwest Hunan, noted for cord-marked
Pottery-making begins in the Middle East.
Hassuna pottery emerges in central Mesopotamia, characterized by a cream
slip with reddish paint and linear designs.
Peiligang Chinese Neolithic Culture in Henan, noted for thick red-coloured
pots, with ear-shaped handles, round bottoms and thick necks.
Halaf pottery introduced colours patterned with geometric and animal motifs
in orange, red, brown and black. Late Halaf-style ceramics were exceptional
for their high quality polychrome painting. Houli Chinese Neolithic Culture,
centred on Shandong.
Pottery-making begins in the Greek region of Thessaly. See also: Greek
Xinglongwa Chinese Neolithic Culture in Inner Mongolia, noted for its
low-temperature cylindrical ceramic ware.
By this date pottery was being produced throughout the Russian Far East,
notably by the Gromatukha and Novopetrovsk cultures. Also "The Enthroned
Goddess" figurine from Catalhuyuk, Anatolia (Turkey).
Cishan Chinese Neolithic Culture in southern Hebei. Cishan potters produced
a more diverse range of pots including basins, serving stands, and ornate
Dadiwan Chinese Neolithic Culture in Gansu and Shaanxi developed the Cishan
style of pottery. See also: Chinese
Pottery-making begins in the Americas.
Oldest faience workshop in Egypt established at Abydos. Also, Pedra Pintada
Cave pots, near Santarem, Brazil. Also pottery-making begins in the Indian
sub-continent. Mehrgarh Period II ceramic culture (5500-4800 BCE) is centred
on present-day northwest India and Pakistan. It was followed by Merhgarh
Period III (4800-3500).
Chinese Neolithic Xinle Culture around the lower Liao River on the Liaodong.
Cardium Pottery Culture spreads from Greece westwards into the Mediterranean
and Adriatic, into the Balkans, Italy, the French Rhone Valley, and Eastern
Spain. Also Chinese Neolithic Zhaobaogou Culture in Inner Mongolia and
Hebei is noted for engraved pots with geometric/zoomorphic designs.
Ubaid pottery was the first pottery to dominate Mesopotamia. In general,
Ubaid ceramic ware is decorated in a more subdued way, with very little
of the Halaf glossiness and colour. Instead it is renowned for a more
restrained style of buff/green coloured ware decorated with chevrons,
zigzags, parallel lines and other abstract patterns.
Chinese Neolithic Beixin Culture centred on Shandong.
Pots made at Takarkori rock shelter in the Acacus mountains of southern
Hamangia ceramic sculpture in Romania produces the "Thinker
Chinese Neolithic Daxi Culture from the Middle Yangtze River region, known
for its red pottery, eggshell-thin drinking cups and orange/black decorations.
Chinese Neolithic Yangshao Culture based along the Yellow River, Henan,
is noted for its white, red, and black vessels, ornamented with bird,
fish, deer, and plant motifs. Also renowned for its funerary storage jars
decorated with volutes and sawtooth patternwork, applied with sweeping
brush strokes of black and red colour pigment. For details of the various
colour pigments used by
Neolithic ceramicists, see: Prehistoric
Early Jomon Japanese pottery: noted for cord-marked earthenware cooking
& storage vessels.
Chinese Neolithic Hemudu Culture in Yuyao, Zhejiang produced thick and
porous pots, typically coloured black with charcoal and decorated with
curvilinear and geometric designs.
Start of Eastern Linear Pottery Culture which spreads into Bulgaria, Hungary,
Chinese Hongshan Culture (4700-2900) develops in Inner Mongolia and northeastern
China. Known for its clay figurines of obese, pregnant women.
Tourneys/tournettes (primitive types of potter's wheels) first used in
the Middle East.
Western Linear Pottery Culture spreads into Poland, Czech Republic, Germany,
and France. Also San Jacinto culture ceramic vessels made in Colombia.
Dawenkou Chinese Neolithic Culture centred on Shandong, Henan, and Jiangsu,
is illustrated by long-stemmed goblets.