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Whilst it has long been known that rock art extends across the Mpumalanga highlands, little is known about this art. This project aims to record and study both the painted hunter-gatherer art and the engraved farmer art in the region.

For nearly a decade painted and engraved sites have been recorded across the Province. Besides research, the project has trained many undergraduate and honours students in field archaeology in the course of field schools. This project is closely linked to the ongoing Bokoni Farmscapes project.

For updates on the project and news of new publications, follow the Rock Art Research Institute on Facebook.

Project staff
Publications, theses and dissertations


Pearce, D. G., Johnson, K., Mac Conachie, K., Sinclair Thomson, B. and van Rooyen, A. 2019. Two new rock painting sites in the Mpumalanga highlands, South Africa. South African Archaeological Bulletin 74:42–45.

Theses and dissertations


Viera, T. 2022. Micro-photogrammetry and 3D analysis of peck marks at Boomplaats rock engraving site, Mpumalanga. Unpublished honours report, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg.


Katz, F. 2020. Analysis of selected rock engravings at Boomplaats, Mashishing, South Africa, in relation to settlement patterns of the Bokoni people. Unpublished honours report, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg.

Maseko, M. 2020. Sacred spaces: rock paintings of the Komati-LiGwa study area, Mpumalanga. Unpublished Masters dissertation, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg.

Funding and support

The project is currently supported by the South African National Research Foundation.

We are grateful to the numerous landowners and communities who have allowed us access to their properties and sites to undertake this research.