Tanum Rock Art Museum Sweden

INTRODUCTION TO TANUM ROCK ART

 
 
Archaeology Rock Art Petroglyphs Pictographs Tanum Sweden Scandinavian Bronze Age Prehistoric Culture
The high concentration of petroglyphs at Tanum - near Tanumshede, Bohuslan - has been declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The site includes one of the largest carved rocks of the Nordic Bronze Age - the 'Vitlyckehal' - in Scandinavia. The 'Tanum petroglyphs' represent 1000's of images on over 600 panels, concentrated in distinct areas along a 25 km stretch which was originally the coastline of a fjord during the Bronze Age. The site covers an area of about 51 hectares (126 acres). The petroglyphs depict boats (the Hjortspring boat), wagons (or carts), animals, and humans with bows, spears and axes. As well as hunting scenes, human rituals are depicted.
 
Dr Gerhard Milstreu Tanum Rock Art Research Centre Sweden Archaeology
Dr. Gerhard Milstreu
As explained by Dr. Gerhard Milstreu of Sweden’s Tanum Rock Art Research Centre, the beliefs and means of survival provide the basis for these rock carvings and rock paintings. The prehistoric images - rock carvings and rock paintings - are generally categorized according to the subsistence basis depicted: images from the Stone Age are hunter images, images from the Bronze Age are farmer images. Geographically the cultural periods developed differently, homogeneous with the geological and climatic circumstances. The cultures of the Stone Age existed everywhere during prehistoric times, but are now confined to indigenous groups, such as the Inuit, in Canada and Greenland, and the Aborigines, in Australia.
 
Archaeology Rock Art Petroglyphs Pictographs Tanum Sweden Scandinavian Bronze Age Prehistoric Culture
Underslös Museum
Archaeology Rock Art Petroglyphs Pictographs Tanum Sweden Scandinavian Bronze Age Prehistoric Culture
Aspeberget Tanum 12
 
 
Archaeology Rock Art Petroglyphs Pictographs Tanum Sweden Scandinavian Bronze Age Prehistoric Culture
 
Archaeology Rock Art Petroglyphs Pictographs Tanum Sweden Scandinavian Bronze Age Prehistoric Culture
Around 4.000 B.C. a new cultural period arose in Southern Scandinavia - the so called Neolithic period. It was during this period that agriculture first began to arrive in the Scandinavian region from the Middle East, where the earliest origins of domestication have been found. Over time, societies changed drastically - people sometimes call it the largest revolution in the history of mankind: the Neolithic revolution. It marked change from a hunter-gatherer society to a productive society. People settled down and created communities of varying sizes based around arable farming, which enabled a much larger number of people to be fed. As a consequence of the resulting sharp increase in population, cities and city states with production and 'international' trade emerged in the Middle East between 8.000-6.000 B.C.
 
Archaeology Rock Art Petroglyphs Pictographs Tanum Sweden Scandinavian Bronze Age Prehistoric Culture
Svenneby Tanum
Archaeology Rock Art Petroglyphs Pictographs Tanum Sweden Scandinavian Bronze Age Prehistoric Culture
Nämfors
Archaeology Rock Art Petroglyphs Pictographs Tanum Sweden Scandinavian Bronze Age Prehistoric Culture
Aspeberget Tanum 12
During the Scandinavian Neolithic periods, hunter-gatherer ways of life gave way over time to agriculture. A marked change occurred when the Bronze Age began around 2.000 B.C. During the Bronze Age, the pictorial expression underwent a change in both form and content. The rock carvings from this period are frequently known as farmers carvings. The people practicing agriculture became dependant on different powers compared to those in the past, and the dominating theory is that the carvings describe the religion of the Bronze Age with its myths and rituals, inspired by their way of life. The rock carvings were not 'art for art's sake', but constituted a practical tool to maintain the religious needs and balance within society. The representations are our largest source for our appreciation of their cosmology. They are predominantly pecked in stone, but also appear frequently on metals, bronze and gold, and on perishable materials, such as wood and tattoos on the skin.
 
The Tanum Museum of Rock Carvings - UNDERSLOS HallristningsMuseum - curates the research and heritage management for the Tanum rock art. The Tanum Museum of Rock Carvings is a non-commercial institution managed by the Scandinavian Society for Prehistoric Art.
 
Archaeology Rock Art Petroglyphs Pictographs Tanum Sweden Scandinavian Bronze Age Prehistoric Culture
 
Like us on Facebook & Follow us on Twitter to receive news & updates:
 
Tanum Rock Art Index
Scandinavian Rock Art Archive
Bradshaw Foundation
Support our work & become a
Friend of the Foundation
Bradshaw Foundation Twitter @BrashawFND
Homepage About the Foundation Contact Us Facebook News Articles Twitter List of Research Papers Professor Stephen Oppenheimer Travel Index About the Expeditions Forthcoming Expeditions Bespoke Expeditions Enquire Practical Information History of Exploration Welcome to the iShop Film Downloads DVD's Sculpture Prints Clothing Messenger Bag eBooks INORA Downloads About iLecture Films Shipping & Handling iLectures In Conversation Video Stories Travel Films Read the reviews Join the free Mailing List Bradshaw Foundation Facebook Friends of the Foundation Archive Index World's Oldest Rock Art Africa Documentary Films South Africa RARI Giraffe Carvings Niger Namibia Western Central Africa Africa Paintings Gallery Tanzania The Tuareg People Tuareg Salt Caravans Gilf Kebir Archive Index San Rock Art Paintings San Bushman San Rock Art Film Origins Centre Johannesburg Archive Index Arizona Baja California Baja California Film Coso Range Talking Stone Film Nevada Oregon Territory Moab, Utah Clovis First Australia Archive Index Introduction Bradshaw Paintings Kimberley Region The Unambal Hugh Brown Leif Thiele Gallery Dan Clark Grahame Walsh Ian Wilson Bradshaws / Gwion Gwion Archive Index Introduction Origins of the British Avebury Stonehenge Sounds of Stonehenge The British Museum British Isles Megaliths Gower Peninsula Rock Art Mendip Hills Prehistory Northumberland Rock Art Red Lady of Paviland Stone Age Mammoth Abattoir Archive Index Introduction Peterborough Petroglyphs Western Canadian Rock Art Writing-On-Stone Wuikinuxv Territory Dinosaur Provincial Park Archive Index Huashan Rock Art Yinchuan Museum Rock Art Festival Field Trip Gallery Itinerant Creeds Inner Mongolia & Ningxia Vanishing Civilization Life in Rock Art (PDF) Tibet Tibet Photographs Dazu Rock Carvings Tiger Motif Archive Index Chauvet Cave Lascaux Cave Niaux Cave Cosquer Cave Rouffignac Cave Portable Art Defining Rock Art Tuc d'Audoubert Bison Dr. Jean Clottes Index UNESCO World Heritage Introduction Cave Paintings Gallery Visiting the Chauvet Cave Return to Chauvet Cave Investigating the Cave Venus & Sorcerer Werner Herzog Film Chauvet Publications India Archive Index Rock Art Central India Pachmarhi Hills India Rock Art Gallery Preservation & Education Dr. V. S. Wakankar Articles on India Rock Art Contemporary Art Middle East Archive Index Middle East Inroduction Rock Art of Iran Rock Art of Saudi Arabia United Arab Emirates Rock Art Ancient Geometry Middle East Colonisation Scandinavian Rock Art Archive Scandinavian Introduction Alta Rock Art Norway Rock Art in Finland Tanum Rock Art Sweden Thor Heyerdahl Archive Index Introduction America's Oldest Art? Pedra Furada Bolivian Rock Art Campeche Island - Brazil Checta Petroglyphs - Peru Cueva de las Manos Santa Catarina Island - Brazil Rock Art in Britain Campeche Rock Art Petroglyphs El Salvador - Corinto Cave Hand Rock Art Paintings Tibetan Rock Art United Arab Emirates Uzbekistan Yinchuan Rock Art Museum Introduction Ice Age Art Gallery Claire Artemyz Jill Cook Interview Cycladic Introduction Cycladic Gallery Introduction Geometric Signs Chart Research Methodology Geometric Signs in France Sign Types/Countries/Regions Bibliography Ancient Symbols in Rock Art Newsletter Archive Download Issues Introduction Genetic Map Professor Stephen Oppenheimer Further Reading Origins of the British BBC Documentary Origins Index Origins Overview 13 Big Questions Stanley Ambrose Homo Floresiensis Herto Skulls Homo Dmanisi Liujiang Skull Introduction Sentinels in Stone Easter Island Rock Art Birdman Cult / Motif Sea & Marine Creatures Design & Motifs Dr Georgia Lee Easter Island Map Contemporary Art Glossary Conclusion Thor Heyerdahl Introduction When & Who Built It? How Was It Built? The Area Sounds of Stonehenge Meaning of a Pyramid Pyramid Studies Pyramid Superstructure Pyramid Substructure Pyramid Preparations Pyramid Building Saqqara Nabil Swelim Temples of Malta and Gozo Research in the Caucasus The Keselo Foundation Homo Dmanisi Ancient Toolmakers Index Introduction Descent into the Cave The Decorated Caves Shamanistic Experience Spring Initiation Rites Summary Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Professor John P. Miller Motif: Eternal Index Banksy Han Meilin Bruce Radke Christian Tuki Gordon Ellis-Brown Site Map Search the Website Glossary of Terms & Definition Podcast on iTunes Other Websites Contact the Foundation