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Second-hand? Paint chemistry and the age, authenticity and conservation/management of hand stencils from the Sunshine Coast, Qld, Australia.

Author(s): Jillian Huntley ; Steven George ; Mary-Jean Sutton ; Paul Tacon

Year: 2017

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Summary

The materials used to created rock art preserve information regarding how, and in some instances when, it was made. Here we outline the field based, geochemical study of three white hand stencils on the Sunshine Coast of Queensland, Australia. Portable X-Ray Fluorescence analysis determined that the stencils were made using a titanium dioxide pigment, almost certainly commercially produced white paint. Significantly, this helped us assign a chronology as the rock art must have been produced after the European colonisation of Australia. The amount of titanium in the paint reflects a 20th century recipe (specifically >1960) rather than a modern, 21st century paint. The manner in which the stencils were made are consistent with Aboriginal rock art across the continent. Rather than a pastiche of Aboriginal art made by European Australians, we suggest that these stencils provide rare insight into the continuing cultural traditions of Indigenous peoples during the mid 1900s. We conclude by outlining the implications of the materiality of these hand stencils for their preservation and ongoing site management.


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Cite this Record

Second-hand? Paint chemistry and the age, authenticity and conservation/management of hand stencils from the Sunshine Coast, Qld, Australia.. Jillian Huntley, Steven George, Mary-Jean Sutton, Paul Tacon. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 429943)


Keywords

Geographic Keywords
Oceania


Spatial Coverage

min long: 111.973; min lat: -52.052 ; max long: -87.715; max lat: 53.331 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 15077

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America