Lascaux Cave -18 000 years old
In a cave with no easy access, Paleolithic man created a unique, accomplished work of art composed of signs and representations of animals
1940 : The Discovery of Lascaux
The discovery of Lascaux Cave by four teenagers in September 1940, in the small Périgourdin village of Montignac, totally transformed our knowledge of parietal art and of man’s origins.
1963 : Closure of the original cave
André Malraux, the then Minister of Culture, made the decision to close the cave. The huge number of visitors had affected the equilibrium of the interior, seriously threatening the survival of the cave paintings.
1979: A UNESCO World Heritage Site
The Vézère Vally is listed as a UNESCO Heritage Site due to its concentration of prehistoric sites; there are no fewer than 147 deposits (including the Laugerie Basse Rock shelters at Les Eyzies) and 25 caves decorated with cave paintings, the most famous of which is Lascaux.
1983: The First Facsimile of a Cave
To compensate for the closure of the original cave, a facsimile or replica (a world-wide first) was made. Christened “Lascaux II”, it allowed visitors to continue discovering this treasure of humanity.
Offering an ever-more immersive experience, Lascaux IV opened to the public in December 2016 with a visit of the entire cave, the clever recreation of a cave-like ambiance, scenography and 3D films etc.