Called the Lion Man, it is fashioned from the tusk of a mammoth and stands about 30 centimeters (12 inches) tall. Its creator polished it with saliva and leather — and an experiment showed that it likely took the sculptor about 320 hours to carve the figure.
Copies of the famous ice age treasure are now on display in New York and Tokyo. The original, however, is heavily damaged — and no one knows exactly what it looks like. Many fragments were overlooked in the cave when the prewar dig was so abruptly terminated. The figure achieved its current form in 1988. It consists of 220 parts, but about 30 percent of the body is still missing. Large segments of the surface have broken off.
Story: Matthias Schulz, Spiegel.de| Photo: thomas-stephan.com