The paintings and other markings span from the Lower Paleolithic to the Bronze Age, and even into the Middle Ages.
There are over 150 figures already catalogued, including those that emphasize the engravings of a few deer, completed with shadowing.
Other examples may date as late as the Early Bronze Age, but the well-known Magdalenian style seen at Lascaux in France (c.
One of the surprises was that many of the paintings were modified repeatedly over thousands of years, possibly explaining the confusion about finer paintings that seemed to date earlier than cruder ones.
In 2009, spelunkers discovered drawings in Coliboaia Cave in Romania, stylistically comparable to those at Chauvet.
One might expect that the first examples of art would be simple and crude.
However the oldest cave paintings are the evidence that modern humans were astonishingly quick in developing their artistic skills.
The second-oldest known cave art is that of Chauvet Cave in France, the paintings of which date to earlier than 30,000 BCE (Upper Paleolithic) according to radiocarbon dating.