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Two million years ago, our ancestors were running down antelope on the African savanna. Instead of relying on complex weaponry, they relied on endurance and they chased their prey until it died. This process often derailed the hunters consciousness into transformation hallucinations. Studying the last hunter-gatherers of the Kalahari visual artist and scholar Mikko Ijäs PhD was able to establish a connection between the hallucinations, trance ceremonies, and the imagery depicted in rock art.
Ijäs claims that some of the earliest examples of visual depictions could be explained through the experiences of the persistence hunters. Ijäs has titled the visible evidence as the ‘fragments of the hunt’, which are not just depictions of hunting, but allegories, such as adoration of the animal’s grace, transformation imagery, depictions of tracks, and images of running people. In this fascinating and inspiring multidisciplinary study Ijäs covers several fields of inquiry including psychology, archaeology, art history, ethnography and paleoanthropology.