The phrase "People in old times" sounds clunky and "ancient people" sounds remote and ambiguous.
I'm looking for two terms, one for people about the age of our grandfathers or great grandfathers but who might not be our biological ancestors. And one for people who lived in earlier times but had a profuse cultural or significant history of art development.
The "old times" does not necessarily refer to the west. For example could I say the following?
Our Tutankhamun's forebears