why humans became artists
Producing a lengthy story on why humans became artists inspired National Geographic photographer Stephen Alvarez to found the Ancient Art Archive:
“Standing in front of 36,000-year-old cave paintings in France, I felt time collapse and the artist speak straight to me across an unimaginable gulf of time. The experience changed me. I started the Archive not just to preserve ancient art sites and our common cultural heritage, but to share them with everyone”
- Stephen Alvarez
Mural of America Collaborators
Ancient Art Archive Directors
Stephen Alvarez, Founder
Moved by the power of humanity’s earliest artworks, National Geographic photographer Stephen Alvarez founded the Ancient Art Archive, a non-profit organization dedicated to using photography and image-based VR technology to share and preserve this fragile historical legacy.
Gregory Crouch, Chair
Gregory Crouch is an author who specializes in adventurous and historic subjects. Most recently, he is the author of The Bonanza King: John Mackay and the Battle Over the Greatest Riches in the American West (Scribner, 2018).
Sarah Lowe, Board Secretary
A member of Frost Brown Todd LLC, Sarah Lowe is a lawyer with eclectic interests, including an abiding interest in history and the arts. Her legal practice focuses on employee benefits, with an emphasis in the areas of qualified plans, related ERISA fiduciary issues and pension plan investments.
Jan Simek, PhD
UT Knoxville Professor Jan Simek, the foremost archaeological expert in the discovery and documentation of ancient art in southeastern United States caves, has spent decades trekking for miles in complete darkness, contorting his body to fit around rocks, and navigating down muddy and stony slopes.
Currently Vice President at The Chemours Company, Kristine has held leadership roles in sustainability, operations, and corporate law in the chemicals and financial services industries.
Stephanie Welsh, Executive Director
Stephanie Welsh is a seasoned non-profit executive and coach who leads the multi-faceted administrative, communication, and relationship-building efforts of the Ancient Art Archive.