Q: When is graffiti not graffiti? A: When it's very, very old, perhaps as much as 2,000 years old.
That's the opinion of experts who looked at
the sandstone wall of Buckhorn Wash in central Utah. They said the
human figures and animals were painted by people called Barrier
Canyon Indians, although pioneer settlers, explorers and vandals
have since scrawled their names across the ancient artwork. Some
have even used spray-paint.
Fed up with the
desecration, Emery County officials launched an ambitious project
to remove over 100 years of writing and restore the 162-foot-long
rock-art panel. Art restorers Richard Wolbers and Constance Silver
have been cleaning the rock wall, and their work, along with
landscaping and other site improvements, is expected to cost
$110,000. The county is raising the money through grants, donations
and T-shirt sales.
To discourage future
vandalism, the county will erect a new fence and begin site tours
and educational programs at area schools.
don't teach people the value and need of protecting these
(pictographs) then we've wasted a lot of money," Project chairman
Reed Martin says. With the help of volunteers, the restoration
should be completed by Sept. 23, when a dedication of the site is
For more information contact the Emery
County Utah Centennial Commission, P.O. Box 1207, Castle Dale, UT