Australian Aboriginals: Aboriginal cave art and stone art

Australian Aboriginal Cave Art

C13 decided to learn more about Australian Aboriginal Cave Art.

Researching Australian Aboriginal Cave Art

She spent time researching, wrote a brief paper on it and then went to town creating some of her own.  Here are some of the images she based her art on.

Australian Aboriginal Cave Art


Australian Aboriginal Cave Art

Australian Aboriginal Cave Art Icons

Aboriginal art was always created as a means of expressing important stories.  The aboriginals did not have a formal written language and so communicated through easy to recognise pictograms..  The art is a language all of its own, and is multi layered meaning far more to those in the know than outsiders.  The iconography we see today was not just used to tell stories (known as Dreamtime stories), it was also used to teach children, for elders to pass on their knowledge to the youth and to tell of their life and their history.

Australian Aboriginal Cave Art

Aboriginal art was usually painted on bark, caves, rocks or drawn in sand or dirt, they were often accompanied by a song or a story.  The aboriginals used earthy colours, which in and of itself had meaning.  Black stands for the colour of the aborigines people and for night; yellow is the colour of the sun and is a sacred colour; Red is the colour of the land and of blood ‘We are all of one blood, from the land we come and to it we will all return’; and finally white is the spirit colour representing things like wind, lightning and smoke.

Australian Aboriginal Cave Art Activity

C13 made cave art by using chalks on brown paper and scrumpling it up for good effect:

Australian Aboriginal Cave Art

She did two of these, based on her research:

Australian Aboriginal Cave Art

Australian Aboriginal Stone Carving Activity

She then decided to try her hand at a carving.  To replicate the feel of the cave rock she prepared some plaster of paris in a butcher’s meat tray, allowing it to set, before giving it an all over mustardy colour:


And using her research she recreated some stone carvings, repainting over the whole tray afterwards:


For another post on Aboriginal art please see our Dot Art post