Conference Proceedings

Network Visualization in the Tree Carving of South-East Australia

James Rose

Knowledge and Value in a Globalising World: Disentangling Dichotomies, Querying Unities, University of Western Australia | International Union of Anthropological and Ethnological Sciences, Australian Anthropological Society and the Association of Social Anthropologists of Aotearoa New Zealand | Published : 2011


In 1918 Robert Etheridge published the beautifully illustrated Dendroglyphs or 'Carved Trees' of NSW. His book formed part of a short-lived sub-genre of early 20th-century amateur ethnography of South-East Australian Aboriginal art. Among the less immediately iconic dendroglyphs that he and others described, Etheridge recognized the consistent use of visual devices such as "conjoined rhomboids", "herringbones", "elongated Greek sigma", "zig zags", "chevrons" and "checker patterns". He and his colonial counterparts speculated (on minimal direct evidence from artists themselves) that these designs might comprise theoretical abstractions of real-world institutions. Other lay observers such as A..

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