Scenes from the World Rock Art course in KL


A couple of weeks ago, I got the chance to attend the World Rock Art course at the University of Nottingham’s Kuala Lumpur campus, an intensive five-day introduction to the rock art traditions from around the world. Most of our days were spent in the (extremely cold) lecture rooms of the university’s branch office in the city centre, but one of the highlights of the course was a field trip to Gua Tambun, the site I’m researching.

(my bad. i had inadvertedly got only half of Dr George Nashs face in this shot)

(my bad. i had inadvertedly got only half of Dr George Nash's face in this shot)

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At the World Rock-art course this week


I’ll be blogging sporadically this week, seeing how I’m at the University of Nottingham campus in KL for the World Rock-art course. It’s an intensive, 5-day course that started yesterday (Sunday) all the way to Thursday, covering theories and methodologies about rock art in all its forms – directly relevant to my field of study. In fact, the course will end with a field trip to Gua Tambun, my research site.

Paul Taçon, whom I met last year at a conference, is fronting most of the sessions for the week – he’s got a wealth of experience researching rock art in Australia. He’s in the news earlier this year for discovering a spectacular find of contact rock art in Arnhem Land in northern Australia; his colleague Sally May is also present for the course, and I’m looking forward to discussing the use of photoshop and other digital tools to enhance degraded rock paintings later on this week.

Last call for the World Rock Art course in KL

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Just putting the word out for last-minute applicants to the World Rock Art course happening this November at the University of Nottingham in Kuala Lumpur. I’ve been told that there are a few more subsidised places for Malaysian applicants (accomodation not included), so if you’re interested please send Barry Lewis an email.

This five-day intensive course will see some of the world’s foremost authorities in rock art presenting an overview of this global phenomenon, research approaches, and also incorporate a field trip to Gua Tambun. Read the full details of the course here.

Wednesday Rojak #42

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It’s almost been a month since the last Wednesday Rojak, and that’s because I’ve been traveling quite heavily for the last three weeks because of the term break and some family matters. On the flip side, it also means that I’ve amassed a few stories for this week’s very belated edition of rojak! Beside visiting Borobudur and Angkor, we also have a closer look at some of the sites in the Philippines.

Fort San Pedro
photo credit: thumbbook
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The rock art of Gua Tambun


While I’m nost supposed to blog about about my ongoing research, I suppose a brief overview wouldn’t hurt. Here’s what I’ll be researching for the next couple of years – the rock art site of Gua Tambun in Perak. Earlier this week, I visited the site with my supervisor and some colleagues at the centre to reconnoitre the site and plan the logistics for fieldwork later this year. It was a chance to get some updated photos of the site and the paintings.

Gunong Panjang, Ipoh, Perak

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Categories: Malaysia Rock Art


Discounted rates at the World Rock Art course

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The upcoming World Rock Art course scheduled to be held at the end of the year in Malaysia is offering a discounted rate for early registrants of ₤675 (including accommodation, lunches and refreshments) if you register before 1 August. The amount is still quite steep for those of us in Asia, so Barry Lewis, the project officer at Trent & Peak Archaeology of the University of Nottingham has asked all interested parties to email him so that he can get an idea of the level of interest – the more people who are interested in the course, the lower the cost will go. So, email him at

You can download a copy of the flyer here, or by clicking on the picture.

Related books:
Introduction to Rock Art Research
Handbook of Rock Art Research
Rock art and posterity: Conserving, managing and recording rock art : proceedings of symposium M, “Conservation and site management” and symposium E, “Recording … Darwin in 1988 (Occasional AURA publication)
World Rock Art (Conservation and Cultural Heritage Series)

Thai community archaeology project boosted thanks to grant

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Pang Ma Pha district, in the Mae Hong Son province of Thailand is benefiting from a grant by the US government to support an archaeological research project focusing on the local caves. The project is run by Dr. Rasmi Shoocongdej from Silpakorn University.

I heard Dr. Shoocongdej presenting her Mae Hong Son work at a conference last year. Unlike most archaeological projects, this one really involved the community in managing the site, to the extent of teaching school kids about the prehistory of the region, as well as training guides within the community to help boost local tourism work. It’s a fine example of community archaeology.

photo credit: Michael Scalet

Preserving the Past
Bangkok Post, 04 March 2008
Link is no longer available

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