Entries by TARA Trust for African Rock Art

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Joan Travis Obituary, 2020

TARA is sad to announce that on Monday June 1st 2020, an long-term friend and TARA supporter, Joan Travis, died in Los Angeles, California. She was 96 years old. I am not sure  when I first met Joan but it is likely that I met her through Dr Mary Leakey, probably soon after Mary discovered […]

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The Ancient Rock Art of Nigeria Exhibition 2020 Booklet

TARA is pleased to share its latest publication, “I Love Rock Art, Nigeria”, which was produced to accompany the travelling exhibition, The Ancient Rock Art of Nigeria.      The exhibition, part of a project supported by the U.S. Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation in collaboration with the National Commission of Museums and Monuments, Ahmadu […]

TARA Sahara Safaris 2019 Updates

David Coulson led two safaris to Niger’s Air Mountains in November 2019. The first Safari was a 12 day trip (for 9 pax) including two spectacular tribal ceremonies, visits to several world class rock engraving sites as well as travels through some of the most beautiful desert scenery in the world. Our hosts were the […]

TARA’s Northern Nigeria Trip in June 2019

In early June David Coulson and Terry Little of TARA returned to Nigeria for a second field trip as part of the current US Ambassadors Fund Rock Art project this year. This was the second Nigerian expedition  this year which  focused on the rock painting sites and little known rock gongs of northern Nigeria in […]

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TARA’s David Coulson and Terry Little return to carry out more documentation and studies of Nigeria’s enigmatic Cross River Monoliths, 2019

In early April this year, David Coulson, as Director of the Cross River Monolith Research Project, along with Ferdinand Smith and Luke Tchalenko of Factum Arte Foundation and TARA consultant Terry Little flew to Calabar, SE Nigeria, to join the Nigerian team led by Professor Abu Edet of the University of Calabar. This trip was […]

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Annual Iteso Cultural Festival still going strong

Anthony Odera, the manager of Kakapel Cultural Centre shared with us an update on the annual Iteso Cultural Festival. In 2018, there were an estimated 20,000 people in attendance at the festival from different parts of Kenya, including from beyond Kenya’s borders. Guests included His Highness Papa Emormor the Iteso King.   TARA was instrumental […]

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Oldest rock painting discovery, 73,000 years old, in Blombos, South Africa

Late last year, archaeologists working in the Blombos Cave in South Africa published findings regarding what is now the world’s oldest rock painting discovered, in the journal Nature. The painting comprises several hashed lines drawn by ochre pencil on a piece of rock dated to 73,000 years ago. The lines were possibly part of a […]

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African rock art in Dakar’s new Museum of Black Civilisations

TARA was recently commissioned to design and produce an African Rock Art exhibition to mark the opening of the new China-funded Museum of Black Civilisations in Dakar, Senegal. The Museum was officially inaugurated on Thursday 6th by President Macky Sall. The concept of this Museum, says its Director, is not to be a commemorative monument […]

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Qobustan: The Prehistory of Mankind, Incised on Stone

Paris-born, Nairobi-resident David Coulson is the personification of a true British adventurer. Having originally made his name in photography and published many books, he is chair of the Nairobi-based Trust for African Rock Art (TARA). Over more than 25 years, he has dedicated his life to discovering, researching, photographing, analysing and preserving rock paintings and […]

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Akwanshi Conference, Calabar & Field Trip

Akwanshi Conference in Calabar on the future and plight of the Cross River Monoliths (Akwanshi), and subsequent field trip to record new monolith sites. Conference poster on wall of Conference Centre. In early March 2018, David Coulson returned to Nigeria’s Cross River State to take part in a Conference on the Cross River Monoliths. This […]

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Gabon Expedition 2018

In February 2018, TARA’s David Coulson travelled to Gabon in order to record little known rock engraving sites originally documented by local archaeologist, Richard Oslisly. The main sites (rock engravings) are located near the banks of the Ogooué River, a huge river which branches off the Congo River in the DRC about 1,000 miles south […]

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TARA Expedition to Chad’s Tibesti Mountains – Sahara

During the course of November 2017, David Coulson of TARA led a 4,000 kilometre expedition to the Tibesti Mountains in northern Chad, the highest mountains (3,415m) in the Sahara Desert. The expedition/project was funded by the US Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation (AFCP) which included two rock art expeditions to northern Chad over 18 months. […]

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The Rock Art of Africa: 25,000 Years of World History and Climate Change on the World’s Biggest Canvas

The Royal Geographical Society – Hong Kong invited David Coulson to speak on “The Rock Art of Africa: 25,000 Years of World History and Climate Change on the World’s Biggest Canvas”. The prestigious event was introduced to RGS members and guests as follows: “Residing in Africa for more than 40 years, British adventurer and photographer […]

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Niger Safari

TARA’s David Coulson recently led a Royal African Rock Art Safari to northern  Niger’s Air Mountains. The group was accompanied by Rhissa Agboulah, Minister of State for Security in Niger, an old friend of David’s. The group flew into the capital, Niamey, on the Niger River, and then on to Agadez by internal flight where […]

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TARA Relocates To Smaller Premises

Towards the end of 2016, TARA moved their Nairobi office from Warai South Rd in Karen to Ndege House plot, 3, Kwarara Rd, Langata (off Ndege Rd). The move was part of a cost cutting operation through which TARA hopes to benefit. The new offices consist of 3 converted 20 ft container units, two of […]

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Chad’s Ennedi Mountains Expedition

In November 2016, TARA’s David Coulson led an expedition to Chad’s Ennedi Mountains (Sahara) to document a little and unknown rock art site in this remote 17,000 sq mile wilderness. The expedition was supported by the US Ambassador’s Fund for Cultural Preservation (AFCP) and was a collaboration between TARA and the Factum Arte Foundation of […]

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Monoliths – Cross River State, Nigeria

In October 2016, with the support of the Prince Claus Fund from Amsterdam and in collaboration with the University of Calabar, TARA organised an expedition to survey and document the Cross River Monoliths, also known as the Ikom Monoliths. This project is the brain child of Professor Solomon Abu Edet of the University of Calabar. […]

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New rock art recording, Zimbabwe

TARA Chairman, David Coulson, is currently in Zimbabwe working on a joint project with the National Museum and University of Zimbabwe (Dr Ancila Nhamo), supported by the Prince Claus Fund of Amsterdam. Already he and the team have recorded a remarkable new San painting site in the Makonde region north west of Harare. In his […]

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‘Ashes to Ashes, Art to Art’: Kenyan artist blends old and new

While we may never know the complete meanings and intentions behind prehistoric art, it still forms a bridge to the past for us today. It is inspiring to contemplate the worlds that existed at the time the art was made, and the worlds that these first artists created through their art. Kenyan born artist, Mwini Mutuku, explores this connection through […]

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Shebah home school visit to TARA

Last month we hosted a group of 20 learners and parents from the Sheba Home Schooling group on a visit to learn more about rock art in Africa. The morning began with a presentation on rock art in Africa and Kenya by David Coulson followed by questions from the learners. The learners seemed interested and […]

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Niger rock art exhibition opens!

TARA’s rock art exhibition opened in Niger last week at Oumarou Ganda Cultural Centre in Niamey. The exhibition highlights the richness and diversity of Niger’s rock engravings and will run from 10th to 23rd May. After this it will travel to other locations in the country. The exhibition could not have been possible without TARA’s […]

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New rock art find in Kenya!

Last weekend, a long-planned survey trip to Kitui County in South Eastern Kenya yielded two new rock art sites. The survey undertaken by Emmanuel Ndiema, Head of Archaeology at the National Museums of Kenya, and David Coulson, founder and chair of the Trust for African Rock Art (TARA) was hoping to record two previously unrecorded […]

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Tourism on the rise in Somaliland

Somaliland’s tourism industry is on the rise and may soon be a leading contributor to the seceded nation’s economy a recent article on Ozy.com reports. Cultural tourism to sites such as the ~5,000-10,000 year old prehistoric paintings of Laas Geel, has seen the number of tourists steadily increase with each passing year with visitors coming […]

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Looking back looking forward: TARA in 2016

2015 was a great year for archaeology and rock art. Featured on Archaeology magazine’s recently released list of the top 10 archaeology discoveries of 2015 are Homo naledi (of course), earliest stone tools found yet from Turkana, Kenya, and significantly for rock art, the Sulawesi paintings. These hand stencils and paintings of pig-deer in Indonesia were […]

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TARA curates UNESCO Kenya exhibition

On Friday the 15th January the Italian Cultural Institute was re-opened after renovations. During the opening, people got a glimpse of the upcoming TARA-curated travelling exhibition by UNESCO: “In Search of Kenya”, which will begin its journey through the country from the Alliance Française in Nairobi later this year. The full exhibition aims to show […]

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The 2015 Kalacha Festival: Can Anything Good Come Out of Nazareth?

Most people in any given society tend to buy anything the media propagates as the gospel truth; and this has not been any different for the Northern Kenya region. Violence between pastoralist communities over grazing lands and water resources has been at the centre of media coverage, both locally and internationally. Thus the image most […]

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Cultural Mediation and Rock Art: 5 Questions with Hamidou Moussa

The organisation Culture Por Tous (Culture for all) describes cultural mediation as the deployment of intervention strategies – activities and projects – that aim to introduce publics to a variety of experiences in the context of art and heritage institutions, municipal services, or community groups. Hamidou Moussa, TARA intern and culture student and practitioner from Niger, explained […]

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An African Honey Trail – finding common ground in Northern Kenya

TARA is happy to work together with organisations that share similar or related values and goals. Porini Welfare Association aims to strengthen local community ecological governance through the understanding that effective ecosystems are a function of cultural wisdom and commitment by the local communities. Recently Porini has launched a programme called An African Honey Trail that […]

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Terry Little, TARA COO, co-publishes rock art conservation report

From 2012-2014, the Getty Institute ran an African-Australian rock art project that involved workshops and knowledge sharing between rock art specialists, managers, and custodian communities. In August 2014, participants in the project, including Terry Little, TARA COO, travelled to Kakadu National Park for the the Southern Africa-Australia Rock Art Conservation Exchange. This recently produced book is the […]

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TARA Rock Art Safari to Niger – 2015

In October 2015, TARA Chairman David Coulson led a special private 10 day Safari to Niger’s Aïr Mountains. The expedition was accompanied by Minister Rhissa Agboulah, special Advisor to the President on Security. During the safari, which began in Agadez, the group were greeted and entertained by traditional Wodaabe and Tuareg dancers including 70 Tuareg on camels […]

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Deborah – New Intern

TARA welcomes one more Kenyan intern, Deborah, who will be with us till the end of the year. Deborah will be graduating from the University of Nairobi in December 2015, with a Bachelor of Arts degree, having majored in Tourism and Psychology. She says: “Having an interest in Kenya’s tourism sector in terms of the […]

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Mark – New Intern

TARA welcomes a new group of Kenyan interns who will be with us until the end of the year. Mark joins us after having completed his Bachelors degree with a major in Archaeology and a minor in Geography from the University of Nairobi, Kenya. While with us Mark intends to learn about various TARA activities […]

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Nairobi National Museum Visits TARA

Last week TARA hosted two scholars attached to the Nairobi National Museum- Njeri Gachihi and Ssemulende Robert. They dropped by to familiarise themselves with African rock art in a general context, and spend some time exploring our rich rock art database before travelling to spend a month at the Kakapel rock art site and monument […]

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Tomos – New Intern

Along with Hanna, we are also delighted to have Tomos, an intern from Wales, with us for 2 weeks. Here’s what he says: “Hamjambo! My name is Tomos and I’ll be working with TARA as an intern for the next two weeks. I received a BA in Archaeology from the University of Cambridge with an emphasis on the […]

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Hanna – New Intern

TARA is pleased to welcome a new intern who will be with us until December this year. Hanna is from Finland and at the moment she is finalising her studies for the cultural policy master’s degree with a major in social and public policy in the University of Jyväskylä, Finland. She did a bachelor’s degree […]

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Revisiting Lokori’s rock art

At the end of August, TARA revisited the Lokori rock art sites in Northern Kenya to check on the state of the rock art, and to meet with the community members for discussions on the future management of the site. Lokori is host to rock art sites located on rocky hills known as Namoratunga, the […]

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Cross River monoliths in Nigeria on the verge of total destruction

Cross River State in Nigeria is home to around 450 ancient carved monoliths, a distinctive feature of the region. Known as Akwanshi, the monoliths are dated to between 500 and 1,500 years old and are believed to mark ancient burial sites. Along with depictions of faces, each monolith has unique decoration patterns and inscriptions. But […]

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TARA attends the Kisii Agricultural Show

TARA participated in the Kisii Agricultural Show that was held in early July in Kisii Town, Western Kenya on the invitation of our partner and sculptor Mr Elkanah Ongesa, and his organisation DEPCONS, Design Power Consultants. This was the first time that either organisation had participated in the agricultural fair but our combined stand showed […]

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Contemporary rock paintings in Kenya

Most rock art in Africa, and in the rest of the world, is a phenomenon that relates to the continents past yet Kenya’s Maasai pastoralists continue to make rock paintings today. These paintings are made in order to mark initiation ceremonies when Maasai boys become warriors (Moran), a ceremony that takes place roughly every 20 […]

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Lindsay – New Intern

Lindsay Toll, USA, is undertaking internship in July – August 2015. “I received my BA in Anthropology from the University of Kentucky and am now pursuing a MA from the same institution. Concurrently, I am working towards a MA in Development and International Organizations from the Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce. My studies […]

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Exclusive Rock Art Safari Reward for $5,000 Contribution

For a $5000 donation on our crowdfunding campaign, available on igg.me/at/Saharan-Rock-Art, David Coulson, photographer and TARA founder, will guide you on a 3-day, 2 night rock art safari (travel inclusive) to Mfangano Island, Lake Victoria, Kenya, staying at a top lodge in one of East Africa’s most beautiful locations. Visit 2 ancient Twa rock painting […]

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Prince Claus Fund and TARA announce collaboration

TARA is excited to announce the launch of a two-year collaboration with the Prince Claus Fund. Uniting their resources, both partners are committed to quickly respond to emergency situations concerning African rock art heritage and over this period approximately 7 projects will be selected that will not only have a direct and profound impact mitigating […]

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Moussa – New Intern

Moussa Hamidou is joining TARA as an intern for a period from June to August 2015. Moussa has completed a Bachelor’s progamme in Literature, Arts and Communication from Abdou Moumouni University of Niamey, Niger. At the moment he’s obtaining a Bachelor of Arts Degree (Licence professionnelle en Art du Spectacle et Médiation culturelle).  Upon graduation […]

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New: TARA Newsletter Issue #16 June 2015

TARA invites you to discover Niger, Ethiopia, Northern Kenya and Eastern Egypt, as well as to read about Lake Turkana and Kalacha festivals. Also in the newsletter TARA’s Partnership with other organizations, Ancient art become contemporary, Reflection and Outreach and educational programs TARA Newsletter 16 is now available for free download – click HERE (PDF) […]

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50 Treasures of Kenya visits TARA

50 Treasures of Kenya is a Nairobi-based trust, that was set up as a celebration of Kenya’s 50th anniversary of Independence. The founders were inspired to demonstrate to Kenyans the beauty of their country, marking each independence year with one Treasure. Since then, the Trust has been expanding by documenting and promoting less known tourist […]

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Saharan Rock Art in Peril

Rock art represents the dawn of imagination of humankind. Nowhere on earth is the art so diverse as in Africa, yet so little known. Time is running out for one of the greatest galleries on Earth – the Sahara Desert. TARA’s new 3 minute video shows some of the Sahara’s treasures that have been documented so […]

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Launch of TARA’s Sahara Crowdfunding Campaign

May 18 is International Museum Day and TARA has marked it by launching an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign: Saving Sahara’s Ancient Rock Art. TARA aims to raise $60,000 in 45 days. These funds will support TARA’s missions to document endangered rock art in six Saharan using phentermine weight loss countries: Chad, Egypt, Mauritania, Mali, Niger, Sudan. […]

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French School Nairobi Visits TARA

The French school of Nairobi grade 7 students visited TARA headquarters on Wednesday the 13th of May, 2015. They had a wonderful session learning about the history of African rock art, its diverse locations as well as the artists of the heritage. The students were involved in a number of rock art activities which included […]

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Julia – New Intern

Julia Svede from Riga, Latvia, joins TARA as an intern from May – June 2015. She obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Cultural Management from the Baltic International Academy and studied Media and Communication in Jonkoping University, Sweden. Julia’s experienced in curation of art exhibitions, cultural event management, radio and online journalism, as well as PR […]

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Italian Cultural Attaché Visits TARA

PHOTO: Francesca Chiesa in the middle with TARA staff Francesca Chiesa, the new Italian Cultural Attaché to Kenya was welcomed to TARA on 8 May 2015. She met with Terry Little, TARA COO, as well as the teams from Community Projects and the Digital Image Center to discuss possible collaboration between TARA and the Italian […]

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Community Based Tourism in Kenya

PHOTO:From left, Wangalwa Musa – TARA, Mildred Mutola – FECTO, Josiah Kabiru – TARA, Francis Kodhiambo – FECTO and Terry Little – TARA. The Federation of Community Tourism Organizations (FECTO) welcomed representatives from TARA at the African Conservation Center (ACC) on 29 April, 2015 . The two teams discussed collaboration to promote their shared objectives […]

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Musa – New Intern

Wangalwa Musa is a student of Moi University awaiting his graduation in Tourism Management. He joins TARA for a period of two months until end of June. Wangalwa will be working on the drive to conserve the endangered rock art in Kisii County and the effects and impacts of Kakapel Rock Art Monument in Busia […]

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TARA Visit to the Chauvet Cave, France

PHOTO: Group photo outside entrance to the Cave with Jean Clottes on extreme left and David Coulson, centre/back In 2005 the Director of the Chauvet Cave project, Professor Jean Clottes,  invited TARA Chairman and founder David Coulson and founding trustee, Alec Campbell to visit the Chauvet Cave in the Ardeche, probably the world’s most famous cave, […]

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Visit by students from Daystar

Students from Daystar University in Nairobi visited TARA on 5th March 2015. They were doing research for their upcoming presentation on African rock art. They met with Terry Little and Martin Sande who introduced them to the organization and its objectives. TARA has always enjoyed working with young people in raising awareness on the importance […]

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Gershom – New Intern

Gershom Talei joins TARA from February 2015 as an intern at the Digital Imaging Centre. He is a graduate of the University of Nairobi with a Bachelor of Arts degree, Geography major. He intends to develop a Geo-database of the documented rock art sites during his internship at TARA that will facilitate future Geo-spatial information […]

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Wangũi – New Intern

Wangũi Kamonji is a recent graduate from Wellesley College where she majored in Environmental Studies and Urban Studies. She is hoping to pursue a Master’s in Archaeology later this year and joins TARA for a 10 week internship beginning in February to gain experience in this field. Prior to working for TARA she conducted a […]

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Rock Art Awareness Project, Niger (Sahara)

Photo: US Ambassador with trainees from the Iferouane Community. David Coulson and Terry Little from TARA traveled to Niger’s Air Mountains (Sahara Desert) in early February 2015 as part of a joint project with Niger’s rock art association “Anigourane”. The Niger Rock Art Project was funded through a recent grant from the US Ambassador’s Fund […]

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World’s Earliest rock art in Africa?

One of the remarkable stories featured in National Geographic Magazine’s First Artists story this month is the story of the Blombos Stones discovered at the Blombos Cave on the Cape Coast, South Africa, in the year 2000, by Professor Chris Henshilwood (University of Bergen). During an excavation Henshilwood discovered pieces of Ochre with abstract markings […]

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TARA in Gobustan

Gobustan is a beautiful volcanic wilderness south west of the Caspian Sea (Azerbaijan) best known as a UNESCO World Heritage rock art site. TARA Chairman visited Gobustan in 2009 at the invitation of the Azerbaijan government. During his visit he also gave a talk at the university in Baku, the capital. Coulson was struck by […]

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Great rock art in Europe and Africa

Photo: 6000 year old life-size giraffe carvings in Niger The January 2015 National Geographic, The First Artists, article talks about the great European Cave sites like Chauvet and Altamira and about African rock paintings from a similar era, in Namibia. National Geographic have been long term supporters of TARA’s work, helping us promote the importance, […]

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Alternative Tourism: Rock Art Tourism in Kenya

Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) team paid a courtesy visit to TARA on Thursday, 15th January 2015. The team included; Michael Riungu,Research Manager, Fred Okeyo, Product Manager and Muriuki Muriithi, Assistant Product Manager. They were welcomed by TARAs David Coulson, Executive Chairman, Terry Little,Chief Operations Officer and  Josiah Kabiru, Community Projects Coordinator. KTB has been on […]

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Rock Art Attractions in Kenya

One of TARA’s objectives is to ’promote tourism and build relationships with organizations to develop tourism’.  TARA is pleased to have the support of Kenya Tourism Board in marketing six rock art attractions in Kenya through their website. Magical Kenya This will boost TARA’s conservation efforts as well as promote domestic travel through creation of […]

Kalacha Cultural Festival 2014

In early December, TARA was again invited to the Kalacha Cultural Festival in Marsabit County.  TARA was represented by it’s Chairman, David Coulson, Community Consultant, Wanjiku Mwangi of Porini and TARA’s intern,  Josue Cardenas.   The festival was organised by the Kivulini Trust. This five-day event showcased the diversity of the region’s  cultural and natural heritage […]

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Survey Trip – Eastern Desert, Egypt

PHOTO: Recording sites in the Wadi Umm Salaam In late October 2014, David Coulson and Terry Little of TARA carried out a rock art survey in Egypt’s Eastern Desert, an area which they have only briefly worked in during the past. They were accompanied on this trip by three friends/TARA supporters. This expedition focused on […]

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Visit to Qurta, in Egypt Nile Valley

PHOTO: Dirk Huyge next to the aurochs engravings that have been dated to more than 15000 years. On November 2nd/3rd 2014 David Coulson and Terry Little of TARA visited Qurta in Egypt’s Nile Valley between Luxor and Aswan. Here they were privileged to be shown one of Africa’s most famous rock art sites by Dr […]

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Teacher/Learner Resources – Pinterest

29 pins with many attached resources have been pinned from TARA photographic -website archives and the World Wide Web. A myriad of useful learning materials and hands-on art activities for both teachers and learners contain inquiry or investigation project information, virtual field trips to rock art sites and video footage of ancient rock art in […]

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Rock Art Workshop 2014

PHOTO: TARA staff, NMK staff and NANAMAC art students In mid-October, TARA H.Q. joined hands with the Nairobi National Museums Art Club (NANAMAC) in a two day mentoring workshop for upcoming young artists selected from different schools within Nairobi. The participants were creatively involved in the drawing of rock art photographs which they interpreted in […]

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TARA Founder & Chairman, David Coulson, featured in Financial Times

David Coulson was recently featured, together with other Kenya experts and personalities in an article published in the London Financial Times, October 24. Entitled, “The Thinking Mans Safari” this piece written by internationally renowned travel writer, Lucia Van der Post seeks to promote trips in northern Kenya involving local experts on unusual and thought-provoking subjects, […]

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Hand Stencils in Africa and Indonesia

Europe’s oldest scientifically dated rock paintings are around 40,800 years old (El Castillo cavern, Spain) while older Art might well be discovered in the coming years. Australia meanwhile claims dates of more than 40,000 years for some of it’s paintings while Africa’s oldest dated paintings, so far, are the so-called Apollo 11 paintings found in […]

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TARA receives Daystar University Students

On 3 October 2014, 5 students from Daystar University in Nairobi visited TARA with the intention of collecting comprehensive information for their presentation based on African rock art. They met with Martin Sande who introduced them to the organization and gave them a tour of the office. TARA is devoted to working with young people […]

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David Coulson, TARA’s Chairman featured in Destination Magazine

PHOTO: Cave entrance about five metres above desert floor. Arched roof with horse-camel period paintings on sloppy wall in Algeria. ‘TARA casts a light on Africa’s rock art’ is an article publication in the Business Destination Magazine. David Coulson has dedicated two decades to finding, documenting and sharing some of Africa’s most fascinating rock art. […]

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Hargeysa International Book Fair

TARA Chairman, David Coulson, was invited to make a presentation at the 7th Hargeysa International Book Fair in Somaliland August 8th to 13th. Somaliland has spectacular rock paintings and his mission was to talk about this art in a Pan African context. The annual Fair aims to enable young people to access a range of […]

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More News on Lake Turkana Festival

PHOTO: Turkana men dancing at the festival. The Lake Turkana Cultural Festival was held in June 2014 in the oasis town of Loiyangalani on the eastern shore of Lake Turkana (Kenya), the world’s biggest desert lake and part of the famous “Cradle of Humankind”. This festival, originally a brainchild of TARA’s, that had been developed […]

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TARA Intern July, 2014

Josué Cardenas from Mexico began a four-month internship at TARA on July 24. He is a conservator from the school, Escuela de Conservación y Restauración de Occidente, (ECRO), in Guadalajara. He has six years of professional experience as a partner in projects of the Instituto Nacional de Anthropologia e Historia (INAH). Rock art is the […]

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IFRA Symposium Presentation

On the 16th-17th of July 2014, TARA’s Josiah Kabiru and Kerstin Rust presented at a symposium jointly organized by the French Institute for Research in Africa (IFRA) and the National Museums of Kenya. The theme of the symposium was Understanding Oneself and the Others: New Domestic and International Tourism Practices and the Promotion of Heritage […]

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Nairobi National Museum Art Club Launch

On 3rd July, 2014, TARA’s Josiah Kabiru and Kerstin Rust attended the launch of Nairobi National Museum Art Club (NANAMAC)  2014 edition at the Nairobi National Museums. TARA will work closely with the NANAMAC in mentoring talented young artist, who were selected from different schools within Nairobi. The Launch was also attended by Purity Senewa […]

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TARA Intern 2014

Kerstin Rust began her two-month internship at TARA in June 2014. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in International Studies from Butler University and will begin a master’s program in International Service Management this fall. Prior to joining TARA, Kerstin worked in several nonprofit organizations with roles in communications, development, and project management. While at TARA, she […]

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TARA Founder & Chairman, David Coulson, featured in Telegraph Magazine

‘One man’s mission to save world’s earliest cave paintings’ is an engaging article published in the UK’s Telegraph magazine (21 June 2014) featuring TARA’s David Coulson and his extensive work through survey, documentation and conservation of rock art heritage across the African continent. Photo: David Coulson & Alec Campbell in the Algerian Sahara with a […]

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Lake Turkana Festival, 2014

Photo: TARA Chairman – David Coulson, giving a talk at Marti rock art site in Loyangalani. The Lake Turkana Cultural Festival 2014 was held in the dusty town of Loiyangalani which is fast becoming a tourist attraction due to the unique desert environment, the rich cultural lifestyle of the peoples of Lake Turkana and other […]

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UNESCO and Alliance Francaise Visitors to TARA

TARA welcomed Marc Patry, UNESCO Program Specialist for the East Africa Regional Office, Mulekini Ngulube, UNESCO Program Special for Culture in Nairobi, Hervé Braneyre, Executive Director of the Alliance Francaise, Nairobi and Harsita Waters, Head of Cultural Affairs at the Alliance for a presentation of its work on June 6, 2014. Also pictured are David […]

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Ethiopia Survey Trip, May 2014

In mid May David Coulson and Terry Little travelled to Ethiopia to conduct a rock art survey in collaboration with colleagues (archeologists) from the ARCCH in Addis (Authority for Research and Conservation of the Cultural Heritage). Photo: Landscape in Southeastern Ethiopia. The two geographical areas on which they focused were (a) the Hararghe Massif, near […]

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TARA Newsletter #15 is now available online

Find out about TARA’s collection at the British Museum, International Partnerships, Ethiopian heritage exchange with Kenya, African Rock Art and Pan-African Renaissance, Community Projects, Alec Campbell Bequest among other stories.   TARA Newsletter #15 is available for free download – Click Here (PDF)   Click here to view and download all TARA newsletters

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Lake Turkana Festival 2014 launch

The 2014 Lake Turkana Festival was launched at Nairobi National Museum this morning (07/05/14). Terry Little, TARA COO, was on hand with the Grace Galmo Boru, County Executive for Tourism, Culture and Social Services, Qabale Duba, Miss Marsabit 2013, Hirya Orre and Marsabit Governor, H.E. Amb. Ukur Yatani. The Festival will take place June 13-15. […]

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TARA staff Recognition

TARA is proud to announce that one of it’s longest serving staff members, John Githinji (driver), was presented with a “giraffe” medal by TARA’s Chairman, David Coulson, for loyalty and dependability. On a recent visit to northern Kenya he observed David Coulson walking over boulders in 130 degree temperatures and realized he was suffering from […]

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British Museum Collaboration with TARA

TARA is honored to host; Elizabeth Galvin, Curator of African Rock Art Image Project, accompanied by Victoria Suzman, Jorge de Torres and Helen Anderson all catalogers for the project from The British Museum. They are working with TARA from 28 April until 8 May 2014. The aims of their visit are to collect more rock art […]

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NMK Director General visits TARA

Dr Ahmed Yassin, recently appointed Director General of the National Museums of Kenya (NMK), paid a courtesy call to TARA on 23 April 2014. He was accompanied by Dr Purity Kiura, acting Director of Regional Museum, Sites and Monuments and Sharon Kyungu, PR and Marketing Manager. TARA has enjoyed a long and fruitful partnership with […]

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Libya Conservation News

Ever since Gadafi’s regime was toppled in Libya, foreign tourists have been unable to visit the amazing rock art of south western Libya. Now, which is encouraging, a Libyan soldier, Aziz Alhashi has made a film showing grafitti damage in the Acacus Mountains (UNESCO World Heritage Site) and posted it on YOU Tube! Photo:6,000 year […]

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Northern Kenya, April 2014

At the end of March/early April TARA Chairman David Coulson traveled to Lake Turkana with Dr. Emmanuel Ndiema, acting Director of Archeology at the National Museums of Kenya, and research fellow, Susan Ongoro. PHOTO: Journey North to Turkana. Their mission was to look for new sites and monitor existing sites in this remote region of […]

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Ethiopian Rock Art Documentation

David Coulson, Terry Little and William Omoro of TARA visited Ethiopia between March 16th and 23rd 2014. PHOTO: TARA officials visits Mamitu Yilma the Director General, National Museums of Ethiopia. The first objective of this trip was to meet with colleagues at the ARCCH – Authority for Research and Conservation of Cultural Heritage as well […]

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Christensen Fund Visit to TARA February 2014

Dr. Bea V. Carol, Director of Grantmaking and Dr. Wolde Tadesse, Program Officer from The Christensen Fund visited TARA on 28 February 2014. The objective was to foster stronger partnership between the two organizations ahead of the proposed rock art survey project in northern Kenya and southern Ethiopia. The Christensen Fund commended TARA’s work with […]

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TARA Archive online with British Museum

Thanks to a partnership with the British Museum and support from the Arcadia Fund, over the next four years TARA’s Rock Art Archive will become available online and people around the world will be able to explore and learn more about Africa’s rock art. The British Museum is cataloguing over 20,000 images from TARA’s collection […]

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TARA Announces International Internship Opportunity

International Internship at TARA 2014 TARA
 welcomes
 International Internship applications; for more details click the link below. International Internship at TARA (PDF download) We welcome intern applications from university students and graduates in archaeology, art history, conservation/restoration, library science, museology and public administration. Internships can be undertaken individually or in association with a university or […]

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Community Workshop in Mount Elgon

TARA joined National Museums of Kenya (NMK) to conduct a Community Engagers’ Workshop at Mount Elgon in Trans-Nzoia County. PHOTO: Participants at Mt Elgon National Park. TARA’s William Omoro joined Dr. Emmanuel Ndiema and Dr. Purity Kiura from the National Museums of Kenya (NMK) to conduct a Community Engagers’ Workshop at Mount Elgon Lodge in […]

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Annual Iteso Festival

The Kakapel community held their annual cultural festival at the Kakapel Community Cultural Centre in western Kenya. TARA’s Chief Operations Officer, Terry Little and Community Projects Officer, William Omoro joined the Kakapel community at the annual cultural festival held at the Kakapel Community Cultural Centre in western Kenya on 26 December 2013. The festival attracted […]

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Kenya Celebrates 50 years of Independence

Kenya celebrates 50 years of independence on December 12, 2013, and TARA acknowledges the premier status of Kenyan culture and heritage of its peoples. TARA was founded in Kenya in 1996 and enjoys a strong relationship with the National Museums of Kenya, and a large network of visionary Kenyan professionals. TARA has enjoyed working with […]

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Written Highlights from Ethiopia Study Tour 2013

TARA hosted eleven Ethiopian cultural heritage professionals representing a wide spectrum of Ethiopian culture during November 11-20, 2013. Participants from the Association for Research and Conservation of Culture (ARCC), the Ankober Museum, the Konso Cultural Centre, the Gedeo Cultural Landscape, Ankober Lodge and The Christensen Fund made up the group. International Journalist, Jessica Hatcher from […]

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Ethiopia Study Tour to TARA Community Rock Art Projects

From November 11-20, 2013, TARA hosted eleven Ethiopian cultural heritage professionals. The purpose of this tour was to initiate dialogue with communities in Kenya about approaches to rock art management and cultural heritage preservation. The trip also provided participants with an opportunity to observe first hand TARA’s community projects (Mfangano Island, Lake Victoria and Kakapel, […]

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Experts Meeting at Prince Claus in November

The Prince Claus Fund’s Cultural Emergency Response programme celebrated its 10th anniversary on 11 November 2013. The event began with a closed consultation with 17 Cultural Emergency Response (CER) partners, including TARA, and international experts in the field of cultural heritage rescue. PHOTO:Terry Little discussing TARA projects with Marianne A. Eijgenraan and Ida de Kat-van […]

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TEIA Visit October 2013

TARA welcomes Taiwan Environmental Information Association members. Hsiu-Ju Sun and Dora Hui-Ting Hsu of the Taiwan Environmental Information Association (TEIA) presented Terry Little, TARA Chief Operations Officer, with a number of publications following their visit to the TARA headquarters on October 8, 2013.

INTO Conference October 2013

The 15th International Conference of National Trusts in Uganda. The 15th International Conference of National Trusts took place in Entebbe, Uganda September 30-October 4. The conference was hosted by the Cross-Cultural Foundation of Uganda. TARA, a member of INTO since 2011, was represented by Terry Little, Chief Operations Officer, who presented a paper about the […]

Oldest Petroglyphs in North America Found

Ancient rock etchings discovered at a dry lake bed in Nevada are the oldest ever found in North America, dating back at least 10,000 years and maybe as much as 14,800 years. They resemble 7,600-year-old petroglyphs found previously in Oregon. While many later etchings show spears and antelope, the Nevada glyphs feature abstract geometrical designs. […]

New Sahara Rock Art Publication

Erotisme et sexualite dans L’art rupestre du Sahara prehistorique Book. A trained geologist, Francois Soleilhavoup has devoted many years of his life to the study of Saharan rock art. In this book, through imagery he has recorded, he opens a window onto the world of sex and eroticism in prehistoric north Africa. Author: Francois Soleihhavoup. […]

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TARA at the 2013 Kalacha Cultural Food and Music Festival

In a remote part of northern Kenya, near some beautiful natural springs in Kalacha Goda, the 2013 Kalacha Cultural Food and Music Festival was held on 24-25 August 2013. “This cultural festival, organized for the second year running by Kivulini Trust highlights the Trust’s commitment to keeping the traditional culture and crafts of indigenous communities alive.” At […]

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Tanzania Update August 2013

The Tanzanian Department of Antiquities and TARA organized activities for elementary students and community leaders on 15-20 August 2013 in Thawi, a village located in central Tanzania and within the Kondoa UNESCO World Heritage Rock Art site. PHOTO: Community members pose for a group photo. The overall goal of this project is to engage communities […]

Rock Art Association of China Conference, July 2013

In July 2013 TARA Chairman, David Coulson, visited China where he represented Africa at an international workshop organized by RARAC, the Rock Art Association of China (Minzu University). The Conference which was sponsored by the Mandala Tibetan Architecture and Culture Society of Qinghai took place mainly in Xining not far from the Qinghai/Tibetan plateau in […]

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Cultural Festival in Kakapel, Kenya, July 2013

TARA joined the people of Kakapel for a cultural celebration at the Kakapel Community Cultural Centre. Kakapel Stakeholders, local chiefs and political leaders, and representatives from TARA and National Museums of Kenya at the exhibition of Iteso objects in the Kakapel Community Cultural Centre. On 06 July 2013 TARA joined the people of Kakapel for […]

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New: TARA Newsletter Issue #14 May 2013

TARA Newsletter 14 is now available online. Find out about TARA’s discovery activities in Chad, Kenya and Malawi and read about conservation of rock art in Kisii, Kenya and Kondoa, Tanzania not forgetting the Rock Art Community Projects in Kakapel, Mfangano Island and Lokori in Kenya and Nyero in Uganda. Finally, read more about the […]

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Chongoni World Heritage Rock Art Site Malawi

TARA is pleased and proud to announce publication of an attractive 46-page guide about the Chongoni World Heritage Rock Art Site Malawi. The book is loaded with information and pictures for different rock art sites at Chongoni. The sites highlighted are Chentcherere, Namzeze, Phanga la Ngoni, Mphunzi, Chongoni Mountain, Diwa and Nsama Wa’ngombe. The publication […]

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Kivulini Trust visits TARA, April 2013

TARA welcomed Hussein and Mercy from Kivulini Trust. Photo (Left to Right): Hussein Isack and Mercy Gakii from Kivulini Trust with Gloria Borona from TARA. TARA welcomed Hussein Isack and Mercy Gakii from Kivulini Trust to TARA headquarters on 19April 2013. They met with David Coulson, Terry Little and Gloria K. Borona and discussed generic viagra […]

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TARA in partnership with ICCROM, February 2013

ICCROM Sites and Unit Director visits TARA. Joe King, Sites Unit Director of ICCROM, looks on as David Coulson, TARA Executive Director, signs a Memorandum of Understanding regarding the SOIMA xanax online 2013 Safeguarding Sound and Image Collections Course which will be held in Nairobi from September 2013. Applications are due March 1, 2013. Click […]

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Daystar University students visits TARA

TARA welcomed students from Daystar University. Photo: Terry Little (Left), TARA’s COO and (Right) Gloria Borona, Community Projects Manager, with Daystar University students. Evelyne, Choba, Edmond, Breda and Victor from Daystar University in Nairobi visited TARA on 13 February 2013. The students are writing a paper on ‘Art in Africa’ and decided to research on […]

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British Museum Acquires TARA Archive

The British Museum has formed a partnership with the Trust for African Rock Art (TARA), acquiring a digital copy of TARA’s major photographic archive both to preserve it and to make it fully available online through the British Museum website, through the generous support of the Arcadia Fund. The 25,000 digital photographs of rock art […]

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Prince Claus Fund Director visits TARA, January 2013

TARA welcomed Christa Meindersma, Prince Claus Fund Director. Prince Claus Fund Director, Christa Meindersma, with the Canadian High Commissioner David Angell, at a reception held at TARA. Christa Meindersma, Director of the Prince Claus Fund, visited the TARA headquarters on 29 January 2013. Through the Cultural Emergency Response Fund (CER) TARA has benefitted from the […]

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Visit of Chinese News Agency, November 2012

TARA welcomed a delegation of Chinese News Agency. Mr Chaowen Wang, General Director of the Africa Regional Bureau of the Xinhua News Agency visited TARA headquarters on 29 November 2012 to discuss ways to raise awareness of Africa’s rock art heritage. Xinhua is the official press agency of the People’s Republic of China as well as […]

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TARA receives US Funding to Implement Community Project in Kondoa, Tanzania

The Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation has awarded a $54,000 grant to TARA to implement a community project in Kondoa rock art sites (a UNESCO World Heritage Site). The project aims at conservation of the sites through; increasing local community awareness, basic infrastructure development, conservation plans and promotion of the sites for tourism in ways […]

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New Safaricom Network Mast on Mfangano Island

Through the efforts of TARA and the Abasuba Community Peace Museum. Safaricom (one of Kenya’s telecommunication giants) has installed a network mast near Mawanga rock art site. For this isolated community who haven’t been able to use mobile phones since the opening up of communication networks, this is a big development. Of importance to TARA […]

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United States Embassy, Uganda Funds Preservation of Nyero Rock Paintings

TARA’s David Coulson and Gloria Borona attended a grant signing ceremony in Kumi District, Uganda on 21 September, 2010. The grant was provided though the U.S. Ambassador’s Fund for Cultural Preservation. The donation of USD 37,000 will be received by Uganda’s Department of Museums and Monuments to preserve Nyero rock paintings and other rock art […]

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Director Kenya Cultural Centre visits TARA

Aghan Odero the Director of KCC (Kenya Cultural Centre) visited TARA on 16 September 2010. PHOTO: Aghan Odero, Kenya Cultural Centre Director, visits TARA While at TARA, Aghan, along with KCC Board Member, Lorna Abungu, met with David Coulson, Terry Little and Gloria Borona to discuss possibilities of partnerships/joint projects between the two institutions. Key […]

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Pleistocene Art of the World Probed

Jean Clottes, Immediate Past President of IFRAO (International Foundation of Rock Art Organisations) and member of TARA Advisory Board, welcomed over 400 rock art experts from 37 countries to the Pleistocene Art of the World Congress 2010 in Tarascon-sur-Ariege and Foix, France from 6 -11 September, 2010. It was characterised by multidisciplinary approaches to Pleistocene […]

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TARA expands its Library Resources

The Institute of Museum and Library Services, Washington DC, in partnership with the Getty Foundation, Henry Luce Foundation and the Heritage Preservation, donated 15 new titles to TARA’s Library. These publications, which are designed to assist organisations in caring for their collections, are valuable additions to TARA’s ever-growing library collection. African American art; the international […]

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Obituary Gerard Bailloud

Renowned French archaeologist and author, Gerard Bailloud passed away on August 30, 2010 at the age of 90. He made an outstanding contribution to rock art, by writing several books which include Art Rupestre en Ennedi (Looking for rock paintings and engravings in the Ennedi Hills), based on the rock art of the massive Chad. […]

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Update – Abasuba Community Peace Museum

On 24 – 26 August 2010 a team of TARA staff members travelled to Mfangano Island to evaluate the progress of projects at the Abasuba Community Peace Museum. This trip offered an opportunity to train the tour guides of Mawanga and Kwitone rock art sites on good customer care relations while conveying the history of […]

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Obituary Prof. Fabrizio Mori

Prof. Fabrizio Mori, eminent Africanist scholar and founder of the Italian-Libyan Archaeological Mission in the Acacus and Messak passed away in July 2010, aged 85. Prof. Mori was among the first western researchers to visit the Acacus Mountains, in the south-western Fezzan. His first expedition is dated 1955 and his most famous book, Tadrart Acacus […]

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TARA Staff Updates

Ramanus Asango an intern at TARA since February 2010, joins TARA as an IT assistant and Website Administrator. His main task will be in uploading the CMS version of TARA’s website, updating it , expanding the photo gallery and making the online gift shop functional. He was a student at the University of Sunderland where […]

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New TARA Publication on Community Projects

TARA is pleased and proud to announce the publication of an attractive 68 page booklet on community rock art projects with a case study of its highly vibrant project on Mfangano Island, Lake Victoria, Kenya: Managing Community Projects: TARA and the Abasuba Community Peace Museum. The book is loaded with pictures and with stories from […]

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AFS Volunteers Visit TARA

Three AFS – American Field Service volunteers visited TARA on 28th of June, 2010. The volunteers Frances Smit from South Africa, Kweku Darten from Ghana and Signe Nielsen from Denmark have been on an exchange program in Kenya and were interested in learning more about TARA and its work across the continent. AFS aims at […]

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Jean Clottes Honoured with Science Award

Jean Clottes, a prominent French prehistorian and member of TARA’s Advisory Board, was awarded with the Great Gold Medal with Special Honours for Sciences from “Arts-Sciences-Lettres” in June 2010. This Academic Society has been in existence since 1915 and this is the first time a rock art specialist received the award and the second time […]