The emergence of African paintings can be traced to those paintings that can be seen in caves and rock faces (Campbell & Coulson, 2000). The first African painting was traced back in Namibia and is estimated to be around 27000 years old. Traditionally, African paintings were used as medium of conveying information on issues to do with nature, values, beauty, communication with ancestors and others. For instance, the rock paintings were perceived as creating an important link between the spiritual realms and the physical world. In addition, African paintings started as realistic, descriptions of people, animals and life. Nonetheless, as the painting developed the subject of painting become abstract, whereby, the use of various colors was embraced by the painters (Campbell & Coulson, 2000). The commonly used colors were dyes, which were made from animal parts, plants and berries. After colonization African paintings were largely influenced in terms of being distorted with an aim of bringing out humorous attributes in them, but they maintained their African touch in them. Therefore, painting is one of the most important African pieces of art.
Campbell, A., & Coulson, D. (2000). African Rock Art: Painting and Engravings on Stone. Harry N. Abrams.