Tasmania's Aboriginal community will decide tomorrow whether a sacred rock formation should be returned to the far North-West from where is was removed nearly 60 years ago.
Aboriginal Land Council chair Michael Mansell described the removal of the formation by scientists in 1962 as a "reckless act of cultural vandalism".
He said scientists sawed off and transported two large carvings from Preminghana, just north of Marrawah which were displayed at the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery until 2005.
"Subsequently, the sacred carvings were removed from display at the behest of the Aboriginal community and are now stored in a warehouse at a building at Rosny," Mr Mansell said.
"White people wrongly believed Aboriginal people did not read and write because our ancestors had no books or pens.
"They failed to understand that the of the dreaming stories, names of tribes and of warriors, and of major events, were carved permanently into stone.
"It's like cutting a finger off the Mona Lisa and we want it back."
Mr Mansell said the Land Council had asked TMAG to return the rock carving and if tomorrow's meeting decided they should be returned the museum should pay for the transfer.
"It doesn't make sense for the carving not to be returned from where it was taken and if push comes to shove we will ask the Tasmanian Government to legislate for the return," he said.
TMAG has been contacted for comment.