English Summary

SAMHELL is a cross-boundary cooperation between Sweden and Norway regarding rock art. The project is led by the County Administrative Board in Västra Götaland and the Norwegian Directorate for Cultural Heritage, in partnership with the University of Bergen.

The project started in may 2019 and will continue until november 2022. It is included in the Interreg Sweden-Norway programme within the section of “Cross-border cooperation” (“Gränslöst samarbete”), and is partly financed through the European Regional Development Fund.


During the later decades of the 20th century, it became increasingly clear that several rock art sites were exposed to weathering and suffered risk of destruction.

Projects that focused on the causes of degradation were carried out in both Norway and Sweden – such as the Interreg project “Rock carvings in Borderland”, which lasted from 1997 to 2000 – brought about new findings on the degradation of granite (i.e. hosting most of the rock art in this region). Since then, Sweden and Norway have made progress in the areas of research, care and management of rock art.


The objective of the project is to promote the exchange of experiences, facilitate learning opportunities and form the foundation of a long-term cross-border cooperation. The overall project objectives are to create:

– a lasting cross-border collaboration on visualisation, preservation and care of rock art

– common routines and methodologies (standards) for documentation, care and visibility of rock art

– a joint standardised 3D documentation method

The projects goal are achieved by realising the following sub-projects:

Sub-project 1 – Preservation and care – Best Practice: this sub-goal is achieved by studying and summarising the last 30 years of research related to the degradation of rock carvings. The results are to be realised as a set of best-practice guidelines for the preservation and care of rock carvings.

Sub-project 2 – Visualisation of rock carvings: this sub-goal is reached through the evaluation of different non-destructive methods for making rock carvings available.

Sub-project 3 – Evaluation report on 3D technology as a documentation standard for rock carvings: this sub-goal is achieved by comparing earlier traditional documentation of rock carvings with current 3D scans, and evaluating suitable 3D software for visualisation and for analysis of weathering.

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