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Bio Journalist, artist, photographer for National Geographic Magazine. Most recently founder of the Ancient Art Archive
Stephen Alvarez (@salvarezphoto) Instagram photos and videos
List of Instagram medias taken by Stephen Alvarez (@salvarezphoto)
Hand prints on BLM land in Southern Utah. If one symbol could sum up all of humanity it might be the negative handprint. I've seen them across the world, on 6 of 7 continents. They may well be the first form of indivudual human expression. They are so unique and individual that I think of them as the original selfie.
@salvarezphoto working in an the Cherokee Syllabary chamber of an unnamed cave in the Southeast. Photo by @alancressler The Cherokee were the only Native American group to have a written language. It was developed by Sequoyah in the early 1800s. In the years immediately after adoption 80% of the Cherokee population became literate. That is a literacy rate that the US has barely beaten today. Some of the first examples of Syllabary are preserved inside caves in the Cherokee homeland along what is now the I-59 corridor on the Georgia-Alabama state lines. The Ancient Art Archive @ancientartarchive has been working with the SCCi to build a 3D model of this particular chamber. Our hope is that the model will serve as the basis for a VR experience that will let disparate members of the Cherokee Nations virtually visit this place and see the words that their ancestors wrote on this cave wall. The cave has been heavily visited in the past and modern graffiti covers the earlier Cherokee writing. After building the 3D model the Ancient Art Archive will digitally remove the modern graffiti to restore the chamber to how the Cherokee left it in the early 1800s. The cave is owned and administered by the Southeastern Cave Conservancy. With the help of the Cherokee Nation they have gated this chamber to protect the writing. The SCCi has also given the Ancient Art Archive an initial grant to begin the modeling. @scci_caves
At 586 feet deep Fantastic Pit is the deepest freefall shaft in the lower 48 United States. It augers through Pigeon Mountain like a railway tunnel turned on end. I was reminded of this photo recently while at an @ancientartarchive presentation given on a friends farm at the foot of Pigeon Mountain. Thank you to the Cofers for hosting us and to all who came to hear about what the @ancientartarchive is doing to explore and preserve humanity's first stories. #cave #georgia #explore