While many wall painting fragments were uncovered during excavations, Cameron's (1981: 3) survey of Ghassulian wall art featured only seven main compositions worthy of detailed consideration.
The portrayal of horned masks would be quite plausible as animal horns and their replicas played a significant role in the cubic practices and iconography of the Ghassulian culture (Elliott 1977: 6).
However, radiocarbon analyses situate the Ghassulian culture, and the 'Processional' scene, within the fifth millennium cal BC (Bourke et al.
Artefactual and ecofactual evidence recovered in recent work at Ghassul and Shiqmim allows us to characterise the Ghassulian culture as prosperous, economically diverse and socially stratified (Bourke 2008; Rowan & Golden 2009; Burton & Levy 2012).
Yellow pigment, while relatively easy to obtain, was nonetheless sparingly employed, perhaps indicating that the colour held a special significance to the Ghassulian artists.
It would seem probable that Ghassulian artists had access to both malachite (green) and azurite (blue) pigment, given the contemporary exploitation of the Wadi Faynan copper source (Levy 1986: 90) and the previous employment of green malachite to highlight the eyes in the PPNB statues from Ain Ghazal (Schmandt-Besserat 1998: 6).
The wall paintings found by earlier PBI excavators show striking similarities in style and technique to Hennessy's 'Processional' fresco, underlining the strong continuity of artistic and cultural traditions throughout the Ghassulian occupation (Mallon et al.
The compositional status of the Ghassulian artworks within the corpus of art history is of interest.
With the Ghassulian wall painting evidence in the forefront, we suggest that the initial development of a visual narrative style has little to do with the invention of writing.
Their topics include the emergence of the Ghassulian
textile industry in the southern Levant Chalcolithic Period about 4500-3900 BC, the crescent shaped loom weight as evidence for technology and palace economy in Middle Bronze Age Anatolia, considering the finishing of textiles based on neo-Sumerian inscription from Girsu, tapestries in the Bronze and Early Iron Ages of the Ancient Near East, and the whorls from Ugarit at the Musee d'Archeologie Nationale and at the Louvre.
The international set of some two dozen authors try to stick to their brief but it is the presentation of site-specific data that takes the lion's share; the contributors do however consider, for example, whether there is still a case for the Ghassulian
culture (yes), what the desert pastoralist Timnian culture that lasts millennia represents (a stimulating paper by Rosen), or what the analysis of pottery inclusions or metal alloys can contribute.