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Home arrow Rock Art
(Photo E.B.)


Mission Report

Initial identification and pre-qualification by the CREDO/ CNRS of rock paintings discovered in Misool

Date : November 2007
Status : First stage completed , waiting for the financing of the second stage
Funding : Precious Planet and Misool Eco Resort
Report by Noémie Keller

Amazing rock paintings have been observed during summer 2007 by members of the Misool Eco Resort (www.misoolecoresort.com ). In order to know more about it, Misool Eco Resort asked Precious Planet for getting a scientific advice.  Thus Precious Planet got in touch with the CREDO/CNRS (French Centre for Research and  Documentation about Oceania, (www.pacific-credo.fr) forwarding several pictures of the paintings.
The CREDO showed an incredible reactivity and in less than 24 hours we had been put through one of the best expert in the world, Jean-Michel Chazine, an ethno-archaeologist.
Jean-Michel Chazine is also the men who discovered the fabulous Borneo ornated caves http://www.kalimanthrope.com (French language) which are surprisingly similar to Misool’s rock paintings.

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Jean-Michel Chazine travelled to Misool end of November 2007 for a one-week mission for an initial identification. 
For that mission,  he got the support of two Precious Planet’s eco-volunteers (Ambroise and Olivier).  Logistics expenses (boat, accomodation, …) have been provided free of charge by the Misool Eco Resort.

 (Photo E.B.)

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The first analysis on site and the bibliographical research made by JM Chazine, indicate that these paintings have neither been listed nor analysed.  This is a worldwide discovery !

icoThe most beautiful aesthetic and intellectual shocks in my life

“ This trip would provide me with the most beautiful aesthetic and intellectual shocks in my life.  Not only are these paintings exciting by their variety (fish, tunas, dolphins, manatees, negative and positive hands, …), diverging almost completely from those we analysed in Borneo, but their locations are literally breathtaking ! “
Indeed; the paintings have been drawn on cliffs overhanging the sea by several tens of meters.
With a few exceptions, all the graphic elements are in a vertical position.  That point suggests, according to the scientist, that they are not representations of real scenes but ritual allegories still remaining to decode.
These areas because of  their remoteness from the inhabited areas were undoubtedly sacred places dedicated to shamanistic practices.

Specimens have been taken from a calcite casting and would be analysed (thanks to the financial support of Precious Planet*) within a French Public Laboratory.
Dating to the radio-active elements would allow to determinate the age of the calcite and therefore to deduct the age of the underneath paintings (they will necessary be older than the calcite !)

According to the scientist, this painting are for sure several thousand years old.  The laboratory analysis will allow a precise dating.

Help us to finance the dating to the radio-active elements!
Radiometric dating is a means of determining the "age" of a mineral specimen by determining the relative amounts present of certain radioactive elements.  Radioactive elements "decay" (that is, change into other elements) by "half lives." If a half life is equal to one year, then one half of the radioactive element will have decayed in the first year after the mineral was formed; one half of the remainder will decay in the next year (leaving one-fourth remaining), and so forth.
Estimated budget for a comprehensive analysis in a Public Laboratory : 500€

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icoWith only 500 Euros we can learn the age of the paintings !

10, 20 or 50 Euros…
Precious Planet is looking for some generous donators.
Help us here !


To learn more


Detailed report from Jean Michel Chazine on the Web site of Futura Sciences. "Actualités in january 2008". French Article.


(In progress)

Photo Gallery
Many pictures shooted in July, Novembre and Decembre 2007.