The Rock Art Network
The Rock Art Network
The Rock Art Network
Rock Art Network
Kakadu
Southern Africa - Australia, Rock Art Conservation Exchange

Rock Art Network Southern Africa Australia Rock Art Conservation Exchange
Between 2005 and 2011 the Getty Conservation Institute organized annual rock art workshops under the SARAP (Southern African Rock Art Project) banner in South Africa at Mapungubwe and Clanwilliam, in collaboration with various southern African organizations responsible for rock art management and with participants from Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Namibia, Kenya, South Africa and Lesotho.

In 2009, an additional component was added that involved field workshops in Australia in 2012, southern Africa in 2013 and again in Australia in 2014. The idea of this program was to bring together small groups of rock art specialists from countries in southern Africa and Australia, including traditional owners and managers of rock art sites, to discuss problems and challenges to rock art conservation on both continents. The workshops aimed to create a forum to learn from each other and examine work addressing challenges and common problems.

Rock Art Network Getty Conservation Institute Kakadu National Park Northern Territory Australia
The record of climate change and human adaption: Kakadu National Park, a World Heritage site in Australia, contains one of the world’s greatest concentrations of rock art.
© Nicholas Hall
The 2014 Forum, held in Kakadu National Park in the Northern Territory of Australia was intended as the culmination of the learning from the workshops and exchange program and the Getty involvement in rock art conservation practice in both Australia and southern Africa, with input from Argentina as well.

The aim of the Forum was to review the summary experiences of the work to date and focus on forward-looking strategies to address the key issues identified. It brought together an exceptional group of traditional owners, experts and managers directed at achieving these aims. The program included presentations, field inspections, meetings with traditional owners, discussions, and workshopping of key strategies. Participants were tasked with providing key input to the development of a strategic directions paper and to outline practical projects for training and collaboration initiatives.

Kakadu National Park, a World Heritage site in Australia, contains one of the world’s greatest concentrations of rock art. While around ve thousand sites have been recorded, it is believed that there could be 10,000 to 15,000 art sites in total. The paintings throughout the park tell a story of the changing climate, changing species and changing lifestyles of Aboriginal people possibly over a time span from 20,000 year ago to the present. This constitutes one of the longest historical records of any group of people in the world and is truly a treasure of humanity.

Rock Art Network Kakadu Rock Art Workshop Australia 2014
Kakadu rock art workshop 2014.
© Paul Taçon
 
Rock Art Network Kakadu Rock Art Workshop Australia 2014
Kakadu rock art workshop 2014.
© Paul Taçon
 
Rock Art Network Kakadu Rock Art Workshop Australia 2014
Kakadu rock art workshop 2014.
© Paul Taçon
 
Rock Art Network Kakadu Rock Art Workshop Australia 2014
Kakadu rock art workshop 2014.
© Paul Taçon
 
Rock Art Network Getty Conservation Institute GCI workshops South Southern Africa
Participants in GCI workshops in Southern Africa.
© Getty Conservation Institute
 
Rock Art Network Getty Conservation Institute GCI workshops South Southern Africa
Participants in GCI workshops in Southern Africa.
© Getty Conservation Institute

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