Carved trees | State Library of New South Wales

Carved trees: Aboriginal cultures of western NSW

Ornate and expressive, carved trees have been used by Aboriginal people in New South Wales as a form of visual communication for thousands of years.

These elaborate cultural expressions — carved into the sapwood and heartwood of trees once a section of external bark was removed — were meant to last. Sadly, after European colonisation, the practice was abandoned and the original meanings lost.

Special care notice

Images of the carved trees are respectfully displayed following consultation with relevant Aboriginal community representatives of western NSW.  Further information is available in the Carved Trees Exhibition Guide (PDF 5.53 MB).

Album 05: Bora Ground at Banaway [Collymongle] Wiradjuri Country European discovery Return of the trees

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