IFRAO Report Number 11


30 May to 3 June 1994, Flagstaff, U.S.A

The American Rock Art Research Association (ARARA) will host the
1994 International Rock Art Congress in Flagstaff, Arizona, U.S.A. The
event will include the 1994 Business Meeting of IFRAO.
The ARARA Congress is an opportunity to bring toge-ther people
interested in all aspects of rock art research, education, preservation
and conservation. Flagstaff is nestled in the shadow of the San
Francisco Peaks, and situated in an area of abundant and spectacular
rock art and archaeology. The meetings will be held in the DuBois
Conference Center on the campus of Northern Arizona University. There
will be five days of academic sessions, and the following symposia
themes are tentatively planned: preservation and conservation, advances
in dating techniques, early rock art in the Americas, rock art and
religion, snake motif in rock art, Arizona rock art, archaeoastronomy,
shamanism and rock art, rock art of Oceania. The available proposed
symposium rationales are listed below. Submissions of papers or posters
must be accompanied by an Advance Registration Fee of US$50.00 per
participant. Upon acceptance of the paper, symposium or poster, this fee
will be credited towards the participant's full Registration Fee. All
papers meeting the standards and deadlines set forth by the Publications
Committee will appear in post-congress volumes.
The Registration Fees are:
Early registration (prior to 1 May 1994: ARARA members US$100.00,
students US$75.00, non-members US$125.00.
After 1 May 1994, the Registration Fee for all categories is US$150.00
(c. $A230.00).
Accommodation is available at US$85.00 per night (plus tax), single or
double. Alternatively, dormitory accom-modation at the campus, which
includes three meals per day, is available for US$45.00 per person per

Field trips and tours
A large number of national monuments dedicated to preserving
cultural sites are located within one or two days' drive of Flagstaff.
Other nearby national parks safeguard cultural sites while maintaining
natural and scenic wonders. Prehistoric Anasazi, Fremont, Hohokam,
Mogollon and Sinagua rock art and archaeological sites are all located
near Flagstaff, and the history and culture of modern Native Americans
are also accessible. A variety of commercial tours and ARARA-led one-day
field trips are planned. For the latter, participants will need their
own transportation, but will have an ARARA member as trip guide.


Technical advances in dating and paint analysis of rock art
That rock graphics played an important role in prehistoric
societies is unquestioned; but without chronometric ages, assignment to
specific cultures can only be tentative. Until recently, direct dating
of prehistoric rock art was impossible and researchers relied on
indirect evidence. Results from several countries on new dating
techniques hold great promise for changing this assessment. In
addi-tion, the application of modern physical and chemical analysis to
rock art now allows researchers to determine paint components. Different
techniques are necessary to ascertain the chemical constituents of the
pigments, generally inorganic materials, and the binders/vehicles, which
are often organic. However, once comprehensive analyses are complete it
is possible to compare chemical recipes temporally and spatially.
The potential now exists for providing archaeologists with an
abundance of information previously unavailable, and to aid in the
resolution of some of the questions surrounding prehistoric rock art and
the sites where it is found. This symposium on rock art dating and paint
analysis is intended to bring practitioners together for discussion and
dissemination of the latest developments. Please submit papers to:
Dr M. Hyman and Prof. M. W. Rowe, Department of Chemistry, Texas A&M
University, College Station, TX 77843-3255, U.S.A.

The archaeometry of rock art
Technical examinations of rock art are especially significant in
determining the production techniques, states of preservation, types of
measures essential for conservation and the possibilities for dating.
The latest and most innovative research results from Australia, Canada,
France and the United States of America will be presented in this
symposium. Papers will report pigment identifications, compositions of
rock surface accretions, natures of micro-organic habitations,
deterioration analyses and the mechanisms and rate of rock weathering.
Please submit papers to:
Alan Watchman, 1631 Rue Eden, Ancienne-Lorette, Qu‚bec G2E 2N2, Canada.

The ecology of rock art
This symposium will explore issues of human ecology (broadly
defined) as illuminated through the study of rock arts. It will
investigate the ecology of expressive culture and how peoples
symbolically construct the world around them. The symbolic processes and
ecological understandings which inform various rock art traditions will
be explored in an attempt to reveal multifarious relationships between
humans and the environment. Rock art provides a nexus between what is
concrete (the external world) and what is abstract (the human
condition), and this symposium seeks a better understanding of human
experience and the non-human environment.
The organiser is interested in pulling together a diver-sity of
approaches and insights into the human condition vis-a-vis the process
of symboling the land. Anyone in-terested in submitting an abstract is
invited to send a completed abstract for consideration to:
Dr Paul Faulstich, Pitzer College, Claremont, CA 91711, U.S.A.

The serpent motif in palaeoart
The serpent is an animal that has impacted human consciousness
in an extraordinary way. Evidence that it has captured the imagination
of humankind over the millennia and on a universal scale comes from the
animal's multiple and diverse manifestations in religion, mythology and
art. Occasional representations of snakes or eels appear as early as in
the Upper Palaeolithic period. The Hopi Indians of north-eastern
Arizona, living in their ancestral villages only two hours by car from
Flagstaff, are an outstanding example of a culture whose religious
annual cycle contains two intriguing ceremonial occasions that revolve
around the serpent. Famous the world over is their snake dance, which
features the rattlesnake as its most prominent cult animal. In addition,
the Hopi stage puppet dramas, several of which include effigies of a
mythic water snake. Known as Paal"l"qangw, the horned deity is both
venerated and feared by the Hopi.
Persons with an interest in the theme may address any aspect
relating to ophidian iconography in rock or any other medium. This
includes, for example, the whole range of serpentine imagery (macaroni
motifs, undulatory and sinusoidal elements, curvilinear meanders,
zigzags, spirals etc.). Other presenters may want to focus on the
depiction of the serpent in the context of a particular serpent cult;
illuminate (verify or falsify) suggested associations of the animal with
moisture, fertility and phallicism; trace the distribution of horned and
other hybrid serpents; or search for geographic areas devoid of the
serpent motif in their rock art. Please submit abstracts of about 200
words to:
Dr Ekkehart Malotki, 1908 N. Beaver, Flagstaff, AZ 86001, U.S.A.

Early rock art in the Americas
The last decade has witnessed the discovery of several American
rock art sites which may help answer questions about the role of graphic
imagery among the earliest human groups. Archaeological reports on these
sites are being brought together for the purpose of forming a
consolidated body of data and opinion on the nature of this initial
artistic experience. This is an attempt to assess the status of our
knowledge pertaining to style, function, technology, cultural context
and timing. The investigators who report on their findings are
encouraged to divide their attention between the empirical character of
their data and the contribution this makes to our understanding of art
at the dawn of aboriginal America. The concept of palaeoart in their
presentations is given the widest latitude, with the provision that a
concise explanation of its nature and use in the study is conveyed.
A liberal interpretation of `early' is also applied, with only
the upper limits set by the conclusion of the Archaic Cultural Tradition
of pre-ceramic times. This range is in accord with the uneven rise of
rock art in the Americas, and with its occasional continuity into
relatively recent times. Please submit papers to:
Prof. Jack Steinbring, Department of Anthropology, University of
Winnipeg, Winnipeg, Manitoba R3B 2E9, Canada.

Celestial seasonings - astronomical connotations of rock art
Astronomical interpretations of prehistoric rock art have played
a significant part in the development of modern archaeoastronomy since
1975, when interest was renewed in the possibility that the Crab
supernova explo-sion of A.D. 1054 was represented in rock art of the
American Southwest. This hypothesis had been first formulated in 1955.
In the last two decades, a variety of astronomical functions of rock art
have been proposed and investigated. These include representation of
specific historical celestial events, symbolic representation of
celestial objects, symbolic representation of elements of celestial
myths, star maps, markers for astronomical observing stations, markers
for celestially tempered shrines, images intended to involve and exploit
cosmo-magical power, and seasonally significant light-and-shadow
displays. This symposium is designed to establish a disciplined
methodology for archaeoastronomical rock art studies through a
presentation of case studies characterised by critical analysis that
combines understanding of cultural context with consideration of the
inherent limits of astronomical interpretation. Please submit papers to:
Dr Edwin C. Krupp, Griffith Observatory, 2800 E. Observatory Road, Los
Angeles, CA 90027, U.S.A.

Rock art and religion as depicted in rock art
The proposed symposium aims to be an important contribution to
the understanding of possible religious values in rock art. Broadly, the
session will focus on the possible religious implications of rock art.
Specifically, we are interested in papers that deal with religion and
art in many traditions, exploring the possible relations between rock
art and religious symbolism, religious iconography, cosmology, sacred
space/place and pilgrimage, ritual, and myth.
Any paper that focuses on the religious implications of rock
art, both from an academic's and a practitioner's view, will be
considered for presentation. For more information please contact:
Peter van de Loo or Johnny P. Flynn, Department of Huma-nities and
Religious Studies, Northern Arizona University, P.O. Box 6031,
Flagstaff, AZ 86011, U.S.A.

The rock art of Oceania
The symposium on the rock art of Oceania will pull together a
diversity of approaches and insights, examining clues that suggest
connections between various peoples of Oceania, placing individual
islands/sites into a broader context.
The symposium will be examining clues to migration routes,
evidence that suggests the commonality of religious practices (ancestor
worship, cults); indications of social structure (status, clan
affiliations); interaction with the environment (such as images relating
to sea life and what that may signify); astronomical elements in the
rock art (as related to voyaging, star watching); and the trans-mission
of ideas in the form of rock art, as well as symbols of the unconscious
contents of the human psyche. Please submit papers to:
Dr Georgia Lee, P.O. Box 6744, Los Osos, CA 93412, U.S.A.

Conservation and protection of rock art
The interpretation of rock art from ancient Celtic through
shamanism, entoptics and the Boy Scout Handbook are inundating the world
of rock art. The protection and conservation of this ancient heritage
have been and continue to be afterthoughts - after the damage is done,
what do we do to fix it. If this problem is not addressed there will be
very little rock art to interpret.
This symposium will address the problems of conservation and
protection, plus rock art site management: when to attempt the reversal
of vandalism and deteriora-tion of rock panels, when to procure the
services of a conservator; the complete documentation of a rock art
site, problems and ethics involved; when to do nothing but provide
protection; and the myriad problems involved with this aspect of rock
art. Also to be addressed will be the issue of conservators, ethics,
experience and what to look for in engaging the services of a rock art
`conservator'. There will be a round table discussion by participants
with questions from the audience. Please submit papers to:
A. J. Bock, P.O. Box 65, San Miguel, CA 93451, U.S.A.

30 August to 8 September 1995
Pinerolo-Torino, Italy

The Centro Studi e Museo d'Arte Preistorica (CeSMAP), IFRAO
Representative of Italy, will hold this major academic event in the
historic towns of Pinerolo and Torino (first capital of the Italian
Kingdom), in the famous Piemonte Region of north-western Italy. Entitled
`North, East, West, South 1995 International Rock Art Congress', this
event will include the 1995 IFRAO Business Meeting. The event will be
chaired by Professor Dario Seglie and Dr Piero Ricchiardi, and it is
being planned for over one thousand participants.
NEWS '95 will consist of thirteen academic symposia and a poster
session, grouped into four thematic areas as follows:

A. Rock art studies
1A. Rock art studies: new approaches
2A. Semiotics, signs and symbols
3A. Rock art and archaeomusicology

B. Rock art and presentation
4B. Mass media
5B. Museology and museography
6B. Management of rock art

C. Rock art and conservation
7C. Ethics in rock art conservation
8C. Preservation and restoration
9C. Rock art and archaeological excavation
10C. Dating, recording and computer science

D. Rock art in the world
11D. Rock art and the Arctic Circle
12D. Rock art and the Mediterranean Sea
13D. Rock art and the Sahara
14D. News from the world (preferably posters)

Participants are encouraged to submit abstracts in English, which will
appear in the pre-congress publications and in the NEWS '95 Congress
Program. All papers suitable for publication will appear in
post-congress publications. The congress will also include an opening
plenary session, cocktail party and concert, farewell dinner and other
special events. Other rock art organisations are welcome to conduct
annual meetings at this congress. Numerous field trips will be
conducted, both during and after the academic program (e.g.
post-Palaeolithic rock art sites in the Alps, Mount Bego, the Rock
Cavour Park, western Alps, Savoy, Val d'Aosta stelae, Val Camonica,
Carchenna etc.), and there will be tours covering prehistory,
ethnography and history (Torino, Milano, Ven‚zia, Firenze, Napoli and
NEWS '95 is supported by the Italian Central Office, regional
government agencies and the EEC European Authority. The CeSMAP was
established in 1964, and has been decorated with the EEC European
Culture Award 1991. It produces Survey, one of the major periodicals
affiliated with IFRAO, and is a founding member of the Federation. 1995
will be the first time that an IFRAO meeting will be held in Europe, all
previous meetings having been held in Australia, India, South Africa and

Pre-registration and other enquiries are now invited, and should
be addressed to:
Centro Studi e Museo d'Arte Preistorica
Viale Giolitti, 1
10064 Pinerolo (TO)

Telephone 121-794382, Fax 121-76550

Preliminary notice


Symposium 1A of the 1995 International Rock Art Congress in
Italy is entitled Rock art studies: new approaches and will be chaired
by Robert G. Bednarik and Dr Francesco d'Errico. The Symposium is
envisaged to combine two main strands: the introduction of new
technology to examine hypotheses that, so far, have often been proposed
without valid scientific evidence; and secondly, the trend towards
epistemological rigour in the formulation of hypotheses. Among the
topics likely to be covered are therefore:
Organic residues in paints (various classes of plant matter,
blood protein, lipids, binders etc.), extenders in paints,
nano-stratigraphy of paints, organic inclusions in mineral accretions,
microscopic study and 'internal analysis' of tool marks, discrimination
of anthropic and non-anthropic marks, relevant ethology, replication
studies, sequencing of engravings and other petroglyphs, erosion and
microerosion studies, the application of taphonomic logic at both the
technical and epistemic levels, typology of art or symbolic systems,
epistemology in the formulation of theories and in the interpretation of
palaeoart, valid applications of statistics, limitations of analytic
results, sound application of universals, use of site acoustics and
other experimental approaches. It is also proposed to invite
manufacturers of specialised scientific equipment to participate,
through a display of their instruments and technologies and with actual
demonstrations of specific techniques used, or proposed for use, in
palaeoart studies.

A detailed rationale will be published in the next issue of Rock
Art Research, together with a call for the submission of papers.

Agra, India, 9 to 12 December 1993

The Rock Art Research Association of India (RASI) has just
advised (September 1993) that it will hold a rock art conference timed
to coincide with the conclusion of the Global Specialists Conference on
Rock Art in New Delhi, to take advantage of the influx of international
delegates. The RASI Conference will be held in Agra, a short train trip
of 200 km from New Delhi, and will consist of three thematic symposia:

Symposium A: Applications of science in the study, conservation and
management of rock art. This symposium will be co-ordinated by Prof. S.
N. Rajaguru and Dr G. L. Badam of Deccan College, Pune; and Dr D. P.
Agrawal and Prof. G. Rajgopaln, directors of the radio-carbon
laboratories at Ahmedabad and Lucknow. The purposes are to bring
together Indian scientists interested in rock art; to highlight the
importance of scientific study, conservation and management of rock art;
to disseminate information about new methods; and to inspire initiatives
to introduce such methods in national projects.

Symposium B: Regional studies of Indian rock art. This symposium will
bring together the results of recent Indian rock art research, to
establish the present status of this work and to identify the areas of
thrust of future research work. This symposium will be organised by N.
Chan-dramouli, Telugu University, and Dr Rakesh Tewari, Director of the
Archaeological Organisation of Uttar Pradesh.

Symposium C: Continuity of Indian art and crafts tradi-tion: rock art,
tribal art and folk art. The uniqueness of Indian art and its continuity
are the subject of this symposium, chaired by Professor Somnath
Chakravarty, University of Calcutta.

Symposium D: Early art and culture of the Agra region. This will deal
with the problems of appreciation and conservation of rock art,
sculpture and the archaeological heritage of the Agra region. The
purpose is to establish a nucleus of rock art study at Agra, with the
help of the Agra University RASI team. The session is co-ordinated by
Shankar Nath and Pushpa Thakural.

Symposium E: Open session. Symposium E will accom-modate the
remaining papers.

The Registration fee is Rs. 300 (about $A15.00), accom-modation for
non-members of RASI is about Rs. 400 per day, double room. There will be
field trips to the Taj Mahal, Fatehpur Sikari and nearby rock art sites.
For further details contact the Secretary of RASI, Dr Giriraj Kumar, c/o
Faculty of Arts, Dayalbagh Educational Insti-tute, Dayalbagh, Agra 282
005, India.

back next