Venus of Willendorf (24,000 - 22,000 BC)
This figurine was found in the Austrian village of Willendorf in 1908 and dates back to the Paleolithic period of prehistoric times. The voluptuous female figurine is cut from oolith (limestone), a type of stone which originally was not found in this area. "Venus figurines" is a collective term for prehistoric female figurines ever since the Marquis de Vibraye named a prehistoric nude female figurine a Venus Impudique (indecent Venus), which is a pun on the Roman Venus Pudica. The true meaning of the Venus figurines is unknown. It is likely that, in the hunter and collector society of those days, their corpulence stood for prosperity and fertility. The Venus of Willendorf bests all other Venus figurines in its corpulence. The female sexual characteristics are presented very explicitly and enlarged on the contrary to the face, arms and legs which, apparently, were less important. Even her faces was de-emphasized as it is covered with a hair pattern instead of her actual facial features.