The photogrammetric recording of rock art in the Kakadu National Park, Australia

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Rivett, Leo J
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Australian Archaeological Association
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An important feature of the recently declared Kakadu National Park is its archaeological resources, in particular the rock art galleries which are among the oldest and most extensive in the world. Situated in the remote Alligator River region some 250km east of Darwin, the Park covers an area of approximately 6500 and will be progressively increased to almost double this area. In recent years there has been a growing awareness of the cultural, physiographic and biological resources of this region and the declaration of the National Park has resulted in the preparation by the Australian National Parks and Wildlife Service of management programs to protect these resources in the climate of increasing activities in mineral exploration and tourism. The imminent exploitation of the large deposits of uranium in this locality has lent a sense of urgency to this task. The protection and scientific investigation of these rock art sites necessitates a systematic identification and recording program which will provide information for immediate conservation and management schemes and also archival records for future scientific study. As there are an estimated 1000 rock art sites in the park area, this presents a daunting task for any systematic recording program. Faced with this task, the Australian National Parks and Wildlife Service requested the Department of Surveying at the University of Melbourne to investigate the potential of photogrammetry in the recording, interpretation and conservation of the rock art sites in the Park.
Rivett, L.J. 1980. The photogrammetric recording of rock art in the Kakadu National Park, Australia. 'Australian Archaeology', no.10, 38-51.