Archive for Academics

La paura del ritorno: sepolture “anomale”…

Sewerby, East Yorkshire

Ritrovamenti archeologici e fonti letterarie testimoniano alcuni casi di riapertura di tombe e la mutilazione del cadavere, atti dovuti probabilmente alla volontà di rendere definitivamente innocue persone considerate malvagie, nefaste e pericolose, delle quali si temeva il ritorno in vita e alle quali doveva essere imputato un evento inspiegabile, come morti dovute a epidemie.

by Francesca CECI & Francesca RONCORONI


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Facies locorum – paesaggi e arte rupestre

Valcamonica, la Concarena

Valcamonica, la Concarena

La densità e la varietà delle incisioni presenti sulle rocce, che per un lungo tratto della valle degradano verso l’alveo del fiume Oglio che dai ghiacciai dell’Adamello e dalle molte valli laterali convoglia le acque verso il lago d’Iseo, fanno della Valcamonica un caso esemplare per lo studio dei processi di creazione di un paesaggio. Proprio il carattere più evidente di gran parte del patrimonio figurativo rupestre, l’inamovibilità dai luoghi in cui esso è stato istoriato, solleva una questione che tocca in profondità la nozione di paesaggio.

by Giacomo CAMURI

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Rock art across Australia

Wandjina spirit

As rock art theory has largely been refracted through western conceptual and epistemological underpinnings, it is a valuable (and timely) exercise to redirect art theory through the lens of Indigenous Australians’ geographical and cultural settings. For reasons of brevity, this critical exploration is not to offer a comprehensive road map pertaining to all aspects of vastly complicated socio-artistic elements of Australian Indigenous society but to stimulate discussion.

by Marisa GIORGI

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Piovono capre: i capridi nell’arte rupestre dell’Iran

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Iran, goat-like figure

Il testo qui proposto vuole essere una breve sintesi di quanto si è potuto osservare durante una serie di visite, tra aprile e maggio 2013, in tre siti con arte rupestre in Iran: Kalateh Abdol e Shotor Sang, entrambi prossimi alla città di Mashhad, nella regione del Khorasan, e la zona della piana di Teymareh nella provincia di Khomein, a metà strada tra Tehrān e Esfahan. I siti con arte rupestre in Iran offrono una visione d’insieme che appare di straordinaria importanza e ricchezza. Al loro interno i capridi costituiscono un soggetto di primaria importanza e di vasta diffusione.

by Dario SIGARI Read more

Water supply of the fortress Gala Abu Ahmed

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Sudanese desert

To reconstruct the paleo-environmental conditions near an ancient fortress from Napatantimesin the first millennium BC a 6m deep soil profile in the Sudanese desert was studied using 14C-dating and stable C isotope analyses. Strong evidence for the existence of an open water source or at least a near surface water resource during or near the period of the use of the fortress was found. This would explain the establishment and the operation of the fortress at this remote place.

by Nadia PRAYS, Friederike LANG,
Martin KAUPENJOHANN, Andreas GUNDELWE
IN

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Icons That Travel

0 logoThe Atacama Desert and the Andes in South America are crisscrossed by myriads of paths and tracks. Often those tracks are easily seen in Google Earth as broad bands. Also rock art images narrate of such travels. They mainly depict camelids guided by people. In rare instances however a specific kind of traveller has been depicted on the rocks. I have labelled it ‘The Enigmatic Traveller‘. In this study I describe the distribution of this icon, compare it with similar images and try to explain the meaning of the enigmatic position of the arms of this figure.

By Maarten van Hoek

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El Arpa en el Arte Rupestre Andino

Arpista Andino

Instrumentos musicales rara vez se han representado en el arte rupestre. Por lo tanto el descubrimiento de tres (quizás cuatro) petroglifos de arpas – en dos casos tocando por arpistas – en una pared de roca en el desierto de Atacama de América del Sur, es excepcional. Ciertamente son petroglifos de la época posthispana. Musical instruments have only rarely been depicted in rock art. The discovery of three (perhaps four) petroglyphs of harps – two played by harpists – on a rock wall in the Atacama Desert of South America is therefore exceptional. They certainly are Post-Columbian petroglyphs.

By Maarten van Hoek

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The Avian Staff Bearer

Ariquilda-1

Ariquilda-1

This paper investigates a well-known but rare icon from the rock art of the Atacama Desert. It concerns a group of anthropomorphic figures displaying a very specific bird-related element. For that reason Juan Chacama and Gustavo Espinosa speak of ‘hombres-falcónidas’, ‘raptor-men’, to describe this class of anthropomorphic figures. Remarkably, their interpretation seems to be generally ignored by several archaeologists and rock art investigators. This study presents a revaluation of the theory put forward by Juan Chacama and Gustavo Espinosa in 1997.

By Maarten van Hoek

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The Potash Sheep Shifters

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Shay Canyon Bighorns

The Southwest of North America is known for its rich rock art in which the image of the Bighorn is one of the most important zoomorphic representations. This study investigates the many manifestations of the Bighorn in rock art. The focus is on idiosyncrasies and possible transformations of the image of this impressive animal. It proves that in this respect especially Site 3 on Potash Road near Moab, Utah, offers so many shape-shifted images that we can speak of the Potash Sheep Shifters.

by Maarten van Hoek

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Val Meraviglie e Fontanalba (Barocelli 1921)


Barocelli 1921

TRACCE free e-books


Barocelli P. 1921. Val Meraviglie e Fontanalba (Note di escursioni paletnologiche), Atti della Società Piemontese d’Archeologia e Belle Arti, vol. X, fasc. 1, 51 pp., X tavv.
| full text-image and PDF (TRACCE 2015 re-editing) | Italian

[editor’s note: this 1921 paper expresses the first complete archaeological and chronological framework of the Mt. Bego petroglyphic complex; the author, Piero Barocelli was the archaeologist charged with the area, which was at this time managed by the Italian Royal Archaeological Superintendence; Clarence Bicknell, during the last years of his life, passed to him the baton of the research]

by Piero Barocelli – 1921

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Rock Art in Jebel Akhdar, Oman

Bilad Sayt

Bilad Sayt

The petroglyphs and pictographs of Oman are little known, but for the last five years I have been involved in a series of surveys of the Jebel Akhdar Mountains that have resulted in the location of several important sites. Recording these in advance of construction projects undertaken to modernize the country’s transportation network has enabled me to study the rock art in considerable detail for the first time. Using superimpositions, cross-dating with known artistic expressions elsewhere in the region, and the known dates for introduction of various objects of material culture, I propose a preliminary chronology consisting of four major phases spanning the last 6,000 years.

by Angelo Eugenio Fossati
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The Case of Guelta Oukas, Morocco

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Very recently several petroglyphs at the rock art site of Guelta Oukas in the Anti Atlas Mountains of southern Morocco were severely damaged. However, the mutilation was limited to two panels with mainly depictions of cattle and – moreover – to specific body parts of those zoomorphic images. In this paper I argue that this is not just another case of unwanted vandalism. Instead, I propose that the mutilation at Guelta Oukas could represent an instance of ‘negative’ rock art, involving the desecration of the images.

by Maarten van Hoek
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Val Meraviglie e Fontanalba – Tavole (Barocelli 1921)

Barocelli1921SPABA_tav_logo150

Barocelli 1921, plates

TRACCE free e-books



Tavole I-X da:
Barocelli P. 1921. Val Meraviglie e Fontanalba (Note di escursioni paletnologiche), Atti della Società Piemontese d’ Archeologia e Belle Arti, vol. X, fasc. 1, 51 pp., X tavv.

| full text-image and PDF (TRACCE 2015 re-editing, public domain) | Italian

[editor’s note: the 1921 paper by Piero Barocelli is enriched by 10 plates – tracings, drawings and pictures – accompanined by very detailed captions]

by Piero Barocelli – 1921

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New Anthropomorphic Figures from Jebel Rat

Jebel Rat

Jebel Rat

The plateau at the northern foot of Jebel Rat, in the heart of the High Atlas, Morocco, is a major rock-art centre, mainly known for its numerous petroglyphs of horsemen. There are also large circles (interpreted as round shields, some of them decorated) and weapons like daggers, halberds and axes. The anthropomorphic figures are not so well known. Some of them are similar to the ones present at Oukaimeden and Yagour, while others are typical of this plateau. Those figures are round or oval, their heads drawn with coils or spirals. A number of newly found anthropomorphs are presented in this paper.

by Alessandra Bravin
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Mt. Bego, a rediscovered manuscript

Manuscript

Manuscript

The oldest written document regarding European rock art is stored in the Turin State Archive. It is entitled the Academia de Giardini di Belvedere (the Belvedere Gardens Academy).

The manuscript is a copy made around the mid seventeenth century by Pietro Gioffredo, historian of the Savoy House, on the basis of another manuscript, written by Honorato Lorenzo, dating back to the end of the previous century, around 1591, or a few years later.

by Andrea Arcà

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Rock Art at Ischigualasto, and more …

Cruz Sagrada

This paper discusses several aspects of rock art research in general, using the status of rock art research in the Cuyo region of western Argentina as a pilot study. A number of protected and unprotected rock art sites will be discussed, focussing on four interrelated issues: Issue 1: Have the locations of rock art sites correctly been published? Issue 2: Should rock art sites be accessible for all? Issue 3: Should the location of rock art sites be revealed or not? Issue 4: Do only academics have the right to publish information about rock art?

by Maarten van Hoek

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Latmos Mountains (Turkey), endangered rock paintings

Latmos paintings

Baliktas paintings

The living environment of the Latmos Mountains and of its communities are threatened by the deforestation caused by feldspar quarrying. The cultural heritage looks back upon a long history, from the Neolithic period up to the Ottoman Empire. More than 170 sites of rock drawings (6th/5th millennia BC) are known, representing one of the most important discoveries in prehistoric archaeology during the past decades in Anatolia. Television documentaries, newspaper reports, symposia and demonstrations, have not succeeded in preventing the devastation of the landscape… please sign the online petition!

by Anneliese Peschlow-Bindokat

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Phaistos, Crete, cup-marks and other signs

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Phaistos, spiral

Rock art enthusiasts and researchers will be pleasantly surprised while discovering the moderate but diffused presence of Minoan Palaces “rock art”; two main categories are present: mason’s marks and cup-marks – so-called kernoi – all these engraved upon the ashlars limestone blocks of the Minoan Palaces, mainly in the first centuries of the 2nd millennium BC. Some interpretation problems arise, concerning the sacred or practical character of the marks and the use of the kernoi as offering tables or as popular or childish board games. A great concentration of such items may be found at the Phaistos Palace...

by Andrea Arcà



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