Built in 507, the larger in 554 The main bodies were hewn directly from the sandstone cliffs, but details were modeled in mud mixed with straw, coated with stucco.
This coating, practically all of which was worn away long ago, was painted to enhance the expressions of the faces, hands and folds of the robes; the larger one was painted carmine red and the smaller one was painted multiple colors.
Scholars long believed they were first added to paints much later in medieval Europe.
"There was no clear material evidence of drying oils being used in paintings before the 12th century A. anywhere in the world, until now," says Yoko Taniguchi, a Japanese conservation scientist on the team.
Murals found on cave walls in Afghanistan prove that painting with oil had been going on in Asia for centuries before artists used the technique in Europe, scientists said this week.
It is unwise because of many unforeseen consequences that are likely to result.
It is immoral and unjust, because it had nothing to do with United States security and because Iraq had not initiated aggression against us." Congressman Ron Paul (How true that statement has proved to be).
Afghanistan's Bamian cliffs are probably best known for once holding two enormous Buddha statues, as seen in this February 2001 image.
Just one month after this photo was taken, Taliban officials began to destroy the mighty carvings as part of a hard-line crackdown on anything they considered anti-Islamic and idolatrous.
Oldest Oil Paintings | Bamiyan, Afghanistan (National Research Institute for Cultural Properties, Tokyo) An international team of conservators and archaeologists found the world's oldest-known oil paintings in a maze of caves in Afghanistan's Bamiyan Valley, where the Taliban blew up two gigantic stone Buddha statues in 2001.