Archeologist Argues Sex Pistols Graffiti As Important As Ancient Cave Paintings

Since Werner Herzog’s 3D film Cave of Forgotten Dreams was such a big hit earlier this year, should we now expect a follow up, wherein the adventurous director travels to the wilds of central London and dares enter a small apartment? If you’re a certain professor of archeology at the University of York, you apparently might consider it. The Telegraph reports that a handful of cartoons drawn by John Lydon (or Johnny Rotten) of the Sex Pistols have been discovered behind a cupboard in what are now offices. The archeologist in question is Dr. John Schofield who has compared the find with the cave paintings at Lascaux in France, or at the very least, perhaps even more important than the “lost early Beatles recordings” the BBC found in the mid-90s. In that case, Schofield is careful to remind that a producer at the time of that finding said the discovery was “like finding Tutankhamen’s tomb,” so his comparison to ancient cave paintings shouldn’t sound so absurd. That said, the Guardian‘s Johnathan Jones isn’t buying any of it. Writing that “archeologists should know better” and that anyone from that field who agrees with the importance of the find is merely doing so “to provoke their own profession” without really understanding that modern culture constantly “glorifies the immediate.” In a general sense, his argument seems to boil down to: why stoop to pop culture’s level when there’s legitimate, albeit less sexy, work to be done? Our personal addendum is that, while we genuinely like Lydon’s drawings, and realize their importance to the comparatively very recent history of music, isn’t it a bit premature to label something a major archeological find when the guy who drew them is still alive, and could likely redraw the same cartoons today?