Painted Dreams

Painted Dreams

Native American Rock Art & Native Wisdom

Coming Soon

We are planning to republish Painted Dreams in the fall of 2023.
Until then, nice copies can be found on and other book sites.

Painted Dreams
North American Rock Art & Native Wisdom remains the first presentation of aboriginal paintings and carvings found across North America to include the voices of elders, shamans, medicine people, and native dreamseekers.
First published in 1993, Painted Dreams contains additional traditional teachings and photographs. Painted Dreams presents carved and painted images created by native artists and shamans through the ages across North America from the cold coasts of Maine and Nova Scotia, to the boreal forests of northern Ontario and along the edge of the British Columbia rainforests.

A Navaho panel at Standing Cow Ruin

Painted Dreams explores all aspects of rock art, from the pragmatic to the mystical: How old is rock art? Why are pictographs so amazingly durable? Who created these images? And most importantly, what are the secret meanings reaching across time in the paintings and carvings?

“If you deny the spiritual, it’s like sitting in a house and saying there is no wind. The sacred mountains and cliffs are the important places in your life. If we don’t feel them, if we only see them, then we are the ones who are dumb. All the knowledge you will ever need is out there in nature.”


Ojibwa Spiritual Leader

“Three environments are often depicted on the rock walls: the personal, often directed inward through vision questing or the shaman’s journey; the community, where rock art is part of an established sacred site; and ultimately, the intertwined landscapes of the natural world.


Quote from Ch. 10: Voices from the Past, Wisdom for the Future


“Fortunate in having an elderly shaman to induct him, he [Thor Conway] came to see how the landscape is viewed quite differently by Native Americans.”

God & Enhancement of Place by David Brown

“An absolute must read for those interested not only in the science of the ‘rock art’, but the many layers of culture, connection to the Earth, and spirituality beneath.”


Photos (left to right): Newspaper Rock, Indian Creek State Park; Fremont Culture petroglyph; The Teaching Rock, Petroglyphs Provincial Park near Peterborough, Ontario; Pictograph horse with Spanish rider, Canyon de Chelly, Arizona

Painted Dreams

Click the arrows to look inside