Digital George Stow
Institution : Iziko (no number assigned)
Size : 680mmx505mm
Description : Fourteen figures of mixed description, some appear to be wearing antelope heads and stooping. Written in pen over pencil script: "Rocks in the mountain to the N.W. of the Komani. 19th March 1870. G.W.S." [see no.8]
Verso : "9"
Description in published source : "PLATES 13 and 14
LOCALITY.- Tiffin kloof on Madeira Hill, Queenstown.
SITE.- About half an hour’s walk behind the Bowker’s Park Creamery, in a small rock – shelter facing north in Tiffin Kloof, are the remains of paintings. The place has been used by Kafirs as a home, it is built up in front with stones, and the rocks are covered with smoke and dirt. Europeans have helped to deface the paintings by scrawling their names over them. Mr. Wood of the Queenstown Printing and Publishing Co, says that Bushman grinding stones were found by his father in this rock-shelter.
DESCRIPTION.- The painted surface is so faded and dirty that it is difficult to distinguish anything, but one corner is a little sheltered by the overhang of the rock, and here the women in the right-hand top corner of Plate 12 are distinctly visible. Plate 14 is probably lower down on the same slab, but the remains of two women with head-dresses were discernible there, and these were so faded I could not be sure which they were. On other surfaces the are remains of Polychrome bucks, red and yellow, and of a few tall men.
EXPLANATION.- Stow wrote of these cartoons, 'Dance of women in masquerading dresses of Buck-heads and Porcupine quills – Dance of women – evidently the same party as above those…'
The Bushman Dia’Kwain gave the following explanation of these pictures: 'The things which the people here have put on are caps which they have made for themselves of young gemboks’s heads. They have cut the horns out: they mean to tread the “Ken with them (see plate 2A). At the time when they do the ‘ken they wear such caps. The rings which they have put on are the ‘ken’s rings. They do this when they mean to try us, they put on this dress to see whether we shall laugh at them. That is why they put on such things, for they intend to observe us, to see if we are people who laugh at a person who is different. That is why they do this; they have dressed themselves oddly for us, for they wish to see if we know manners. And if we do not laugh at them, they talk to our people about it. They say, “Do you know that the children whom we see do not mock at us? It seems as if they knew manners, for they show respect to us. We had just put on things which we thought that they would laugh at us'.
Dimensions: 13: 19 x 26 inches 14: 18 x 22 inches" (Bleek)
Published : "Rock Paintings in SA" plate 14 [see also plate 13]
Locality : Tiffin Kloof, Madeira Hill, Queenstown; Komani