22 February 2015

Human head and horned bovid head combined in a sculpture from 23JP1222, The Old Route 66 Zoo Site

Human head with big lips facing left, Stacy Dodd and Rod Weber find, near Joplin, Missouri

The sculpture stands upright in this position. The human face is looking left and skyward and the horned bovid head profile is facing right.

Blue line marks the human and animal heads joined together and facing in opposite directions like the mythological two-headed Janus. This is a known paleoart motif described by early sculpture author Pietro Gaietto. The bovid could be a muskox which appears in other examples of portable rock art. The "Harlans Muskox" had downward pointed horns which curve out when viewed from the front but which appear straighter than they are when the animal is seen in side profile view as in this example.

Gaietto writes:
"Sculptures of lower and middle Paleolithic are eight types:
1) human head
2) animal head
3) human head two-faced
4) animal head two-faced
5) human head joined for the neck at the head of animal 
6) human head mixed to animal head
7) naked woman (Venus)
8) head of animal with human body."

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