Kalanga rock art, Zimbabwe

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This art tradition is painted using the finger and in white. It found at a number of rock art sites in and around the Matobo Hills of Zimbabwe.

Like most other rock arts of Bantu-language speakers this art was made for mnemonic purposes during an initiation ceremony, in this case a boy’s initiation ceremony.

Each image was a symbol that could be recognised only by the initiated. Outsiders could see the painted subjects such as giraffe and elephant, but they could not penetrate the secret symbolic meanings and teachings encoded in the subjects.

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