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Senior Research Fellow, Griffith University

Dr Sally K. May is a Senior Research Fellow with the Griffith Centre for Social and Cultural Research, Griffith University. She is an archaeologist and anthropologist whose research focuses on relationships between people, landscapes, material culture and imagery, with inspiration drawn primarily from fieldwork in northern Australia. She is the author of Collecting Cultures: Myth, Politics, and Collaboration in the 1948 Arnhem Land Expedition (2009) and co-author of The Bible in Buffalo Country: Oenpelli Mission 1925 - 1931 (2020).

Experience

  • –present
    Senior Research Fellow, Griffith University
  • 2008–2017
    Senior Lecturer, The Australian National University

Education

  • 2006 
    The Australian National University, PhD
  • 2000 
    Flinders University of South Australia, Honours
  • 1999 
    Flinders University of South Australia, Bachelor or Arts (Archaeology and History)

Publications

  • 2021
    Kaparlgoo Blue: On the adoption of laundry blue pigment into the visual culture of western Arnhem Land, Australia, International Journal of Historical Archaeology
  • 2021
    A spatial analysis of motif clusters at Nanguluwurr rock art site, Kakadu National Park, N.T. Australia, Journal of Field Archaeology
  • 2021
    The Missing Macassans: Indigenous sovereignty, rock art and the archaeology of absence, Australian Archaeology
  • 2021
    ‘Our dad’s painting is hiding, in secret place’: Reverberations of a 1972 rock painting episode in Djok Country, western Arnhem Land, Australia, Rock Art Research
  • 2021
    History disappearing: the rapid loss of Australia’s contact period rock art with a case study from the Djarrng site of Arnhem Land, Northern Territory, Journal of Field Archaeology
  • 2021
    R. Lamilami, 1957-2021: Negotiating two worlds for cultural heritage, Australian Archaeology
  • 2020
    Maliwawa Figures – a previously undescribed Arnhem Land rock art style, Australian Archaeology
  • 2020
    The Buffaroo: a ‘first-sight’ depiction of introduced buffalo in the rock art of western Arnhem Land, Rock Art Research
  • 2020
    Children and rock art: A case study from western Arnhem Land, Australia, Norwegian Archaeological Review
  • 2020
    New Insights into the Rock Art of Anbangbang Gallery, Kakadu National Park, Journal of Field Archaeology
  • 2020
    What painting? Encountering and interpreting the archaeological record in western Arnhem Land, northern Australia,, Archaeology in Oceania
  • 2020
    How 3D models (photogrammetry) of rock art can improve recording veracity: a case study from Kakadu National Park, Australia, Australian Archaeology
  • 2020
    The Bible in Buffalo Country: Oenpelli Mission 1925 – 1931, ANU Press
  • 2020
    Rethinking the age and unity of large naturalistic animal forms in early Western Arnhem Land Rock Art, Australia, Australian Archaeology
  • 2020
    Survival, Social Cohesion and Rock Art: The Painted Hands of Western Arnhem Land, Australia, Cambridge Archaeological Journal
  • 2019
    Navigating Contact: Tradition and Innovation in Australian Contact Rock Art, International Journal of Historical Archaeology
  • 2019
    This is my Father’s Painting: a first-hand account of the creation of the most iconic rock art in Kakadu National Park, Rock Art Research
  • 2018
    Reflections on the Pedagogy of Archaeological Field Schools within Indigenous Community Archaeology Programmes in Australia, Public Archaeology
  • 2018
    Early Australian Anthropomorphs: the global significance of Jabiluka’s Dynamic Figure rock art, Cambridge Archaeological Journal
  • 2018
    Memorialization and the Stencilled Rock Art of Mirarr Country, Northern Australia, Cambridge Archaeological Journal
  • 2018
    The Archaeology of Maliwawa: 25,000 years of occupation in the Wellington Range, Arnhem Land, Australian Archaeology
  • 2018
    Beyond the colonial encounter: global approaches to contact rock art studies, Australian Archaeology
  • 2018
    The Archaeology of Portable Art: Southeast Asian, Pacific and Australian Perspectives, Routledge
  • 2013
    Macassan History and Heritage: journeys, encounters and influences, ANU Press
  • 2009
    Collecting Cultures: Myth, Politics, and Collaboration in the 1948 Arnhem Land Expedition, Altamira
  • 2008
    Archaeologies of Art: time, place and identity, Left Coast Press

Grants and Contracts

  • 2021
    Art at a Crossroads: Aboriginal responses to contact in northern Australia
    Role:
    Chief Investigator
    Funding Source:
    Australian Research Council
  • 2016
    History Places: Wellington Range rock art in a global context
    Role:
    Chief Investigator
    Funding Source:
    Australian Research Council
  • 2008
    Picturing Change: 21st Century perspectives on recent Australian rock art
    Role:
    Chief Investigator
    Funding Source:
    Australian Research Council

Professional Memberships

  • Australian Archaeological Association
  • Australian Rock Art Research Association
  • ICOMOS
  • World Archaeological Congress