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GAMEPASS SHELTER

THE 'ROSETTA STONE' OF SOUTH AFRICA
KZN, SOUTH AFRICA

The well-known painting from Game Pass Shelter at Drakensberg, is commonly referred to as the 'Rosetta Stone' of South African rock art, as it was here that archaeologists first uncovered a vital key to understanding the symbolism of the San Bushman rock art paintings. A partly transformed shaman holds the tail of a dying eland. Its head is lowered and it has exaggerated, erect hairs. The man's hoofed legs are crossed in imitation of the eland's legs. Not shown, but on the right, another shaman with erect hair is also partly transformed into an antelope. Near him is a cloaked figure with an antelope head. In the centre, a shaman dances in the bending forward, arms-back posture. A short skin cloak hangs down in front of him. By juxtaposing a number of figures, the painting shows how shamans are transformed by the n/om that they have obtained from the dying eland. That n/om changes them partially into eland.

The Zamani Project documented the Gamepass Shelter in 2010 with the co-operation of the University of the Witwaters Rand (Wits).

Similar sites with Rock Art:
Wonderwerk Cave (South Africa), Clanwilliam Dam (South Africa)


3D model of Panel 1 

KZN, SOUTH AFRICA

3D model of Panel 1 of the Gamepass Shelter

3D model of Panel 2 

KZN, SOUTH AFRICA

3D model of Panel 2 of the Gamepass Shelter

3D model of Panel 3

KZN, SOUTH AFRICA

3D model of Panel 3 of the Gamepass Shelter

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