Document Type


Date of Degree Completion

Fall 2016

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Primate Behavior

Committee Chair

Mary Lee Jensvold

Second Committee Member

Kathleen Barlow

Third Committee Member

Mark Auslander


Seven captive chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) produced drawings at the University of Oklahoma between November 1971 and November 1972. Chimpanzees drew on sheets of paper that were either blank or had a stimulus. The stimulus was located in the center or offset from the center. These drawings were scanned and digitized. Analysis tested whether chimpanzee mark placement was contingent on the location of stimulus figures. Centroid locations significantly changed between stimulus type for all drawing categories and among participants for free choice and central figure drawings. Participants drew in the empty space opposite offset figure drawings. Findings support previous studies that chimpanzee drawings show systematic patterns that vary between individuals. These findings have implications for motor play, aesthetics, and the ontogeny and phylogeny of art.