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Australian Aboriginal Rock Art

These reproductions of rock art from Australia are from The Native Tribes of Central Australia by Baldwin Spencer and F. J. Gillen [1899]. Although these images are clearly in the public domain, if you use them please respect their sacred nature.

Click on the thumbnails to view the full size image.

These paintings depict totemic inhabitants of the Australian landscape in the 'dreamtime'. They constitute part of a text, the meaning of which is esoteric knowledge only known to Aboriginal elders. Beyond that we can't answer any questions as to their meaning or significance.

As outsiders, we can also appreciate these paintings as sacred art of the most sophisticated nature. Although the Australian Aborigines may have been impoverished by Western standards, their culture has an unbroken history dating back tens of thousands of years. An observer from another planet might well conclude that the Aborigines have the highest level of culture on Earth on the basis of this art.