A review of rock art dating in the Kimberley, Western Australia
"This paper critically reviews the various approaches used to estimate the age of the rock art in the Kimberley region of Western Australia. They include: (i) the relative superimposition of styles; (ii) the use of diagnostic subject matter (depictions of extinct animals, stone tool technology, introduced European and Asian objects and animals); (iii) the recovery of a 'painted' slab from a dated archaeological unit; (iv) radiocarbon dating of beeswax figures, charcoal pigments, organic matter in overlying mineral deposits and 'accreted paint layers' (oxalate rich crusts and amorphous silica skin), pollen grains from an overlaying mud-wasp nest; and (v) optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dating of quartz grains from overlying mud-wasp nests. Future directions for rock art dating in the Kimberley include uranium-series dating of overlying and underlying mineral deposits. (C) 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved."
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