Even today I ask myself the same question although I believe that I have found, or invented, an answer.
In my view tha answer goes back to the origins of mankind. Hundreds of thousands of years ago, some human beings , of which we know very little, left paintings in caves, walls and rocks. However little we know, it is logical to imagine that execution of these paintings entailed a great effort, not only to those who executed them but to the whole tribe. Earth had to be collected and ground to a fine powder, mediums make, pigments mixed, not to mention the light and accesses to the dark caves. Obviously it was a social endeavour, and because it requires a great communal effort, hence it must have a powerful reason.
Just placing some lines or colours in a flat surface has a magical effect, reaching far beyond any reasonable or rational explanation. A circle with two dots in the middle becomes a face….. pure magic.
Any explanation that experts in this field can provide is irrelevant as it can only be speculation. The truth is that images created hundred of thousands of years ago are not outside the reach or understanding or appreciation of any human being today. And if that is not magic, what is it?
Children draw, all civilizations, past and present, have used the representation of flat images to comunicate. From those early days, anything that followed are variations on the same theme. Humans changed the support of their paintings; instead of cave walls,temples, palaces, homes. Techniques changed, oils, temperas, watercolours, etc. But deep inside the act is the same: to cover surfaces with marks and colors. And the magic continues.