The Management of the Kåfjord Rock Art Site
Martin Hykkerud [+]
World Heritage Rock Art Centre – Alta Museum, Norway
The site of Kåfjord, located just a few kilometers north-west of the World Heritage Rock Art Centre – Alta Museum, holds a very special place in the world of rock art. It contains some of the most intriguing imagery of the Alta rock art corpus, and is remarkable both for its size and for its surrounding landscape. However, Kåfjord is also the most vulnerable of the Alta sites. Discovered only four decades ago, it contains a number of weak-points and loose stones, and its bedrock canvas suffers to a great extent from cracking and exfoliation. A recent project, started by Alta Museum in collaboration with the Directorate for Cultural Heritage and Tromsø Museum, has been developing techniques to measure how fast different forms of deterioration are happening at Kåfjord, and, if possible, to identify their causes. The project’s aim is to evaluate the effects of factors such as vegetation, lichen, freezing water, water seepage, extreme weather, and visitation. This paper will discuss some of the findings of the project, with hopes of inspiring researchers and conservationists working at sites with similar challenges.