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date: 21 February 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter addresses the challenge of seeing beyond the motif. Based on a case study in the Mid North of South Australia, this chapter presents a new analytical framework for analyzing style in rock art and using stylistic characteristics to identify authorship. The framework can be customized to different sites and/or regions to provide more nuanced understandings of specific contact trajectories. The results of this study suggest that innovation in contact rock art initially occurs in a single aspect of style and that a sequencing of innovations may be able to provide a temporal succession for contact motifs. The wider value of this framework is that it provides a basis for developing regional or site-specific models of style that may help researchers obtain greater insight into the authorship of contact rock art in different parts of the world.

Keywords: contact, rock art, archaeological theory and method, style, Indigenous archaeology

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