My last post explained how someone or some people made their destructive marks on a culturally significant site. In so doing they were showing disdain and attempting to wipe away part of Tasmania’s aboriginal heritage. Their act sits in stark contrast to a November 2015 document, which was reported in the media a few weeks before the vandalism, that promoted inclusion rather than exclusion. Refer The Mercury article of 11 April 2016.
ICOMOS (International Council on Monuments and Sites) and IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) produced a report Reactive Monitoring Mission to the Tasmanian Wilderness, Australia with many recommendations. These included: ‘The term “wilderness” should be retained in the property name, while future dual naming is strongly encouraged to reflect both the Aboriginal heritage and the relationship of the Tasmanian Aboriginal Community with the property’;’The “Wilderness Zone”, as currently used and interpreted, should be retained in the zonation of the TWWHA, while explicitly providing for Aboriginal access for cultural practices as an integral part of the management of the zone’, and ‘The State Party should support and consolidate the emerging joint management of the TWWHA with the Tasmanian Aboriginal Community’.
The vandal or vandals who defaced the rock art are obviously out of step with growing community attitudes of support for aboriginal heritage and understanding of the values inherent in special sites.