From an old American collection comes this rare
Australian aboriginal artifact that is rarely seen on the market,
CHURINGA. They were incised from stone and then ochred in red.
Churingas for the aboriginal were like personal diaries- etched
pictographs in stone. They tell of highly personal and important events:
family/clan activities, meetings, campgrounds, natural environment, their
ancestral sacred "dreamings". This incised and ochred stone churinga
(message stone) reveals important messages about indigenous Aboriginal
life in the outback. Circles could represent members of a family or clan ,
meeting places, camp sites, water holes, animal tracks. Lines might mean
paths or spears; and dots rain, ants, eggs, or animal tracks. this is a
wonderful old vintage example circa early 1900's with fine old dark
patina. 5." long x 3 " wide, and an old repair on tip.
DIMENSIONS: 5." length by 3" wide.
PROVENANCE: from the estate of Professor Joseph Birdsell specialist in
Aboriginal Art, collected in the 1940's-1950's
CONDITION: Beautiful old dark patina, natural red ochre; repair at tip
with substantially all red ochre still present
MARKETPLACE OBSERVATION: Old stone churingas rarely appear in the
marketplace and we have observed old albeit somewhat larger examples
offered in the $1500-$3000 range. This beautiful old specimen with solid
provenance has a modest reserve that would enable you to acquire it for
Please also enjoy a photo of a possible incisings translation index
from ABORIGINAL AUSTRALIA presented by the Australian Gallery Directors
Council in 1981.
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