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OMM Australia : The world's oldest masterpiece

Tue 1st May, 2007
Art news

Some of the rock art in Australia is six times as old as the Pyramids in Egypt. Even as an Australian I had absolutely no idea about the amazing things that are in my own country and some people want to keep me in that state of mind.

The Burrup Peninsula is home to probably the earliest surviving rock carvings on this planet. Here in Australia, the worst democracy in the world, a mall is more important to our governments looking to endlessly generate revenue and commerce. Sadly, the majority of Australians won't hear about what's taking place, and possibly wouldn't do anything about it anyway. To save these rock carvings, it only takes names on a petition, but secrecy can make that hard when it's not in our media's interests to report it. Already we've achieved Heritage Listing, but Woodside (the mall builders) are now asking for 6.8 sq km to be kept for development as a condition for their support for heritage listing. An overwhelming international negative response from artists world wide would get the message through.

Artists- head on over to the website at the end of the article and increase the pressure on the decision makers to conserve this rock art in the way that it needs- would we bulldoze the oldest of castles in England for shopping malls? Fill in the Grand Canyon or put a satellite dish on the tops of pyramids? All of these ideas sound stupid and unreasonable, but according to some Australians, flattening the oldest rock art in the world and building over the top of it isn't.

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