This photo of the Holhe Fels Venus is from BBC News, May 14, 2009. The figurine is dated at 35,000 years old and it may be the oldest figurative art yet found. I may be sexually depressed because I don’t see a woman with huge breasts and carefully drawn fingers like the reporters discussing this ancient artifact. To me it looks more like a woman holding two babies under a blanket with her hands tucked inside the blanket through slits. It seems more likely that the babies would have coverings over their heads to keep them warm rather than a freak nipple-less woman with a brassiere holding up her enormous breasts. If this sculpture were intended as an erotic representation, the uniquely feminine breasts would be more exposed.
This looks more like a mother fertility symbol wearing cold climate leather skin clothing, and not a playboy bunny slithering out from under a dance costume. Carrying on with this theme, the report saying the figure has carefully drawn hands is a real stretch of visual credulity because in this cold venue the dame would be wearing inside out animal skins with the fur turned out to form cuffs. Her back and legs are not naked but the inside of an animal skin, shown outward, which is quite smooth.
The two breasts in this interpretation are two babies’ heads as seen from the back, and the fact that there are two implies great fertility. In preindustrial times women were often carrying children in their arms and under their clothing and this would be especially true in a cold climate because the baby could easily die if exposed to the sub-freezing winter air.
There are many ancient Venuses but these three are great.
These Venuses also seem to have their hands folded over their breasts but are naked. See more images of Dolni, Willendorf and Lespugue. It is amazing that these sculptures came from such disparate places in time and space and still are so similar. It is a real tribute to the consistency of oral traditions.
Note how easy it would be to tuck one’s hands under the coat when it was cold.
This may be more like the living situation back when the Holhe Venus was living in Germany 35000 years ago during the Ice Ages, and you wouldn’t expect a woman to be prancing around in the nude.