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In 1979 the engraved rock art of Valcamonica was included in the UNESCO’s World Heritage List, the very first Italian site and the first world rock art site to get this award, together with the prehistoric sites and painted caves of Vézère Valley. The proposal was drafted by Prof. Emmanuel Anati, head of “Centro Camuno di Studi Preistorici”, with Dr. Sandro Fontana, at that time councillor for culture in Lombardy.
This important award was given to Valcamonica with reference to Unesco’s III and IV criteria and basing on an ICOMOS’ analysis: “it shows a past civilization….with ideas, with beliefs, with artistic and literal works od exceptional universal value” and then: “The Valcamonica rock engravings are an extraordinary illustrated documentary research on prehistoric customs and ideologies. The interpretation, the typological classification and the chronological studies of these petroglyphs have given a great contribution to the fields of Prehistory, Sociology and Ethnography”. Therefore, Valcamonica rock art was included in the Unesco’s World Heritage List, not only for its particular historical-archaeological importance, but also for the quality of the research linked to it, that opened new horizons to understand the human culture.
The XXVII Valcamonica Symposium will be focused on these topics: the current state of Valcamonica rock art Research; the perspectives of the cultural proposal and touristic management; Valcamonica position in international research networks and in the drafting of European projects; the latest scientific research in the main European rock sites.
The convention will consist of three days full of meetings, interchange between researchers and managers engaged in the study and safeguard of the rock art heritage. Meanwhile, it will be held the PRAT-CARP annual meeting: Cultural routes of the Council of Europe – “European Prehistoric Rock Art Trails”.
The rich calendar of the three days foresees:
• UNESCO’s sites in Lombardy;
• Updates and discussion on the research in Europe;
• Updates on rock art in Valcamonica: the state of research and the areas currently analysed
The program is being finalized and may change
|Friday, October 25, 2019|
|9:00 - 13:00||Opening ceremony|
Stefano Bruno Galli - Councilor for Culture Regione Lombardia
Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Director of the UNESCO World Heritage Center
Secretary General of Commissione Nazionale italiana per l'UNESCO
Emmanuel Anati - Centro Camuno di Studi Preistorici
|14:30 - 17:00||Session 1: Updates and discussion on the research in Europe|
|speeches about Iberian Peninsula (Altamira e Foz Coa), France (Monte Bego e Lascaux), Northern Europe (Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland)|
|17:30 – 19:00||Workshop: Valcamonica rock art, plans for the future|
|At the same time, Annual meeting of the PRAT - CARP (reserved for members only)|
|21:00||Gala Dinner (for invited guests)|
|Saturday, October 26, 2019|
|9:00 - 13:00||Session 2: - Updates on rock art in Valcamonica: the state of research and the areas currently analysed|
|14:30 - 16:00||continuation of session 2|
|speeches about recent discoveries and studies in Riserva naturale incisioni Rupestri di Ceto Cimbergo e Paspardo (localities Foppe di Nadro and Paspardo); Project "Quattro Dossi" - Capo di Ponte; rock art site of Luine and other minor rock sites; some thematic insights|
|16:30 – 18:30||Workshop: Towards a shared chronology of the Valcamonica rock art|
|Sunday, October 27, 2019|
|9:30||Visits to Valcamonica rock art sites (reservation required)|
Rock art is the expressive form of the most ancient inhabitants of Europe and it is the first evidence of culture, society and imagination of Humankind. The most ancient European testimonies are recorded back to 42,000 years ago (but the datings are continually updated by new discoveries and new studies). Painted or engraved, figurative, abstract and schematic scenes, have gathered on the walls of caves and rock-shelters, on the open-air rock outcrops, and also on Megalithic constructions, accompanying the history of man through the Upper Paleolithic, the Neolithic, the Copper Age, Bronze age up to the Iron Age, overrunning, in some cases, in the historical age.
In Europe, more than 150 Rock Art sites are open to the public, they are mainly concentrated in Norway, Sweden, Ireland, the United Kingdom, Italy, Portugal, France and Spain. Many are small sites (a cave, a rock shelter, a small museum…) but there are locations with significant tourism infrastructures. The cultural and tourist interest of the rock art of the Prehistory of Europe has been evaluated by UNESCO recognizing as World Heritage nine sites: Valcamonica (Italy), of which is the forty year anniversary, the caves of the Vézère Valley (France), Alta (Norway), Tanum (Sweden), Brú na-Bóinne (Ireland), Altamira and others caves of the Cantabrian Region (Spain), the rock shelters with Rock Art – Macro-schematic, Levantine and Schematic of the Mediterranean Coast (Spain), Foz Côa e Siega Verde sites (Portugal – Spain) and the Cave of Pont d’Arc named Chauvet (France). To this list we can added the Medieval Rock Art from the Ruprestrian Churches of Matera (Italy).
The Council of Europe also wanted to enhance, through cooperation projects, tourist itineraries based on cultural heritage (historical, artistic, archaeological, historical or religious paths...) with a transnational dimension of recognized importance for understanding and respect common European values, creating the CARPs (Cultural Route of the Council of Europe) and the PRATs (Prehistoric Rock Art Trails).
The rock art sites are a huge part of the European Cultural Heritage but they are also elements that support the local identity. The relationship between Prehistoric Rock Art and the Landscape is used to produce a thematic tourism offer that integrates Culture and Nature, Landscape and Cultural Heritage; this contributes to a sustainable development of the rural communities where are located the sites. Currently, more than 1,5 million visitors come each year to the sites of the CARP Cultural Route.
At the session of November 29, 2018, in Montignac (F), the CCSP was accepted as a full member of the PRAT-CARP and charged with organizing the general meeting for the year 2019. With great pleasure this task was accepted and inserted in the programming of the XXVII Valcamonica Symposium 2019.
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Under the auspice and the participation of