|IFRAO Report Number 16|
MINUTES OF THE 1995 IFRAO MEETING, TURIN, ITALY
The 1995 IFRAO Meeting was held at Turin (1 and 2 September), Italy, on
the occasion of the IRAC NEWS95, and chaired by Dario Seglie (CeSMAP).
The following fourteen associations attended the meeting: AARS (Sahara),
ACASPP (USA), APAAR (Portugal), ARAPE (France), ARARA (USA), AURA
(Australia), CeSMAP (Italy), CIAR-SAA (Argentina), Le Orme dell'Uomo
(Italy), MRARS (Macedonia), RASI (India). SARARA (South Africa), SIARB
(Bolivia), ARAPE (France).
The Meeting was also attended by two observers of associations that have
requested affiliation with IFRAO: the Moscow Centre of Rock Art and
Bioindication Research, and the Armenian Centre for Prehistoric Art
The agenda for the 1995 IFRAO Meeting had ten points (RAR 11: 148-9):
1. Apologies or declaration of proxies: none were received.
2/3. The minutes of the previous IFRAO meeting (Flagstaff 1994) were
not available and so there are no matters arising from these.
4. The meeting unanimously approved, after considera-tions and
improvements, the constitution of the IFRAO. The discussion was
moderated by Ben Swartz.
5. No reports were tabled by member organisations.
6. Unresolved or ongoing business previously debated:
6.1 The meeting decided to discuss the establishment of a universal
and general code of ethics after receiving the suggestions that will
come from the participants of the ongoing round table discussion of the
ethics section of the NEWS95 Congress.
6.2 Computerised data sharing systems: are in progress.
6.3 International keyword system: being used widely.
6.4 Dissemination of IFRAO Standard Scale and devel-opment of
digitised system: project proceeding.
6.5 Future strategies: deferred.
6.6 Copyright and exchange system: resolved.
7. New business:
7.1 The Meeting noted that the submission of RASI about the role of
the IFRAO was already included and discussed in the IFRAO Constitution.
7.2 Four new associations had applied to became members of IFRAO:
the Mid-America Geographic Foundation, Fond du Lac, U.S.A.; the Moscow
Centre of Rock Art and Bioindication Research, Moscow, Russia; the
Armenian Centre for Prehistoric Art Study, Yerevan, Armenia; and
StoneWatch, the Society for Scientific Study of International
Prehistoric Rock Paintings and Rock Engravings, Warmsroth, Germany. The
result of the ballot was unanimous in approving the applications of
these associations. Consequently the IFRAO has now 28 members.
8. General matters:
8.1 The Meeting approved to hold the next IFRAO conferences for 1998
in Portugal, hosted by APAAR; for 2000 in Australia, hosted by AURA; and
for 2001 in Macedonia, hosted by MRARS. It was established earlier to
hold the 1996 Meeting at Swakopmund, Namibia, hosted by SARARA/EARARA,
and the 1997 Meeting at Cochabamba, Bolivia, hosted by SIARB.
8.2 The nomination of the Bhimbetka rock art complex in India for
World Heritage listing has been submitted to Unesco.
8.3 The Meeting approved an IFRAO recommendation: given that the
cultural heritage of the Côa valley, Portugal, is under threat and on
the basis of the scientific and cultural evidence presented at the
NEWS95 International Rock Art Congress, the delegates of IFRAO hereby
make the following statement:
a. It is generally accepted among the international archaeological
and associated scientific community that the cultural heritage of the
Côa valley is of immense national and international importance.
b. It is clear that the petroglyphs of the Côa valley are of great
significance to humankind regardless of all current estimates of their
c. There is an urgent need for comprehensive and ongoing
investigation of the cultural heritage of this region.
d. This IFRAO meeting thereby resolves that the industrial
development of the Côa valley should cease. It was proposed that the Côa
valley be assessed for nomination as a World Heritage site.
9. The 1996 IFRAO Meeting: to be held in Swakopmund, Namibia.
9.1 A proposal by the President was considered, to use for all
future International Rock Art Congresses held under the aegis of the
IFRAO the distinctive name of N.E.W.S. (meaning All the world
according to the acronym North, East, West, South; e.g. NEWS96,
NEWS97, etc.). The proposal was unanimously passed.
These minutes were compiled by Dr Angelo Fossati, Secretary of the 1995
The IFRAO President 1994/95, Professor Dario Seglie
International Rock Art Congress
30 August - 6 September 1995, Turin, Italy
1995 IFRAO Meeting
The event held from 30 August to 6 September 1995, the International
Congress of Rock Art NEWS95, promoted by the International Federation
of Rock Art Organisations, of which I am honoured to have been President
from 1994 to 1995, constituted a fact of world importance. It saw united
for the first time in Europe, in the Turin Polytechnic, about 500 of the
most highly qualified delegates of the principal organisations,
institutes, museums and universities, who in the six continents of our
planet dedicate themselves to rock art, to palaeoart and cognitive
archaeology applied to the original thought of man.
CeSMAP - the Pinerolese Study Centre and Museum of Prehistoric Art - an
institution among the founding members of IFRAO and its representative
for Italy, has had since 1992 by the unanimous vote of the Federation's
twenty-four national delegates the task of organising the 1995 Congress
and official meeting in Italy. The choice of Turin on the part of the
management of CeSMAP took account, above all, of the impossibility of
holding an event of such proportions entirely in a city such as
Pinerolo. Turin, the first capital of Italy, with its glorious past and
recent history, was an excellent choice.
Among possible sites in Turin, the choice fell on one of the most
prestigious: the Royal Valentino Castle. This was possible because our
proposal found total acceptance on the part of Turin Polytechnic and the
Faculty of Architecture which occupy the castle itself. For this open
co-operation I once again wish to thank and accredit the Rector of the
Polytechnic, Professor Rodolfo Zich, for his enthusiasm shown. The
castle could offer classrooms, workshops and space excellently set out,
thus granting the best working conditions to Congress participants. The
castle, the magnificent Valentino Park which surrounds it and the River
Po in whose waters the ancient residence of the Dukes of Savoia is
mirrored, offered an unparalleled beauty which undoubtedly contributed
to the success of the Congress and to the calm scientific debate which
sprang from the multitude of viewpoints expressed and developed during
the congress works.
The name chosen by CeSMAP for the NEWS95 Congress had a particular
significance. The acronym is formed by the initials North, East, West
and South, the four cardinal points. These points have always indicated
the whole world. Thus all of humanity was symbolically united at this
Congress for the exchange of information and for the declared purpose of
co-operating in the progress of the Science of Man, for the elevation of
all humans. We believe that the most profound meaning of a scientific
congress is to divulge reciprocal knowledge and accept differences. We
can in this way move towards a greater solidarity which, perhaps a
utopia, can be transmitted more easily by people of culture who unite
together without mental reservations, from the four angles of the world.
For these reasons, the Representatives of the Federation decided that
all forthcoming congresses which will be held under the auspices of the
IFRAO in different countries will always have the following distinctive
name: NEWS96, 97, 98, 99, 2000 ... thus perpetuating the
spirit of unison in the plurality which will distinguish them.
The NEWS95 Congress was honoured by having obtained the patronage of
the President of the Republic of Italy, Professor Oscar Luigi Scalfaro,
and the EEC European Community, as well as the support of the Presidency
of the Italian Council of Ministers, of the Polytechnic of Turin, of the
City of Pinerolo, including the sponsorship of worthy institutions,
amongst them Turin Polytechnic, Piedmont Region, the Industrial,
Artiginal and Agricultural Chamber of Commerce and the Giolitti
Professional School of Tourism in Turin.
Moreover, we recognise the constructive contribution generously and
amicably given by the Congress's Academic Committee and by the
chairpersons of the sixteen Symposia and the four thematic areas into
which the Congress was divided. It was thanks to their experience and
willingness to co-operate that it had been possible to develop, over the
course of the last three years, the general and scientific layout of the
In order to render the scientific results more general and complete,
each Symposium concluded with a Tavola Rotonda for discussion and
proposals for the future. Reports of the chairpersons which concluded
their Symposia were communi-cated to the closing Plenary Assembly on the
6th of September in the Aula Magna of the Polytechnic for the final,
general, discus-sion. In all, 307 scientific papers and 57 posters were
Our work has formed a bridge for the aims and achieve-ments of future
research, study, conservation and the improvements of rock art; we
debated yesterday's knowledge in order to project that of tomorrow.
The NEWS95 Congress has confirmed that rock art, that oldest trace of
human spirituality found in every continent, constitutes an inalienable
patrimony relative to the original thought of man, a communicative
vehicle of knowledge which we tried to enlarge upon and piece together
through new discoveries, through the study and revision of data already
known, diffusing new hypotheses which we seek to falsify - using
Popper's expression - incessantly to shift the borders of scientific
research in the immensity of the unknown universe which surrounds us.
The manyfold and accrued works have shown that rock art, which evokes
the complexity and the richness of the human mind from its origins,
permitted us to single out a great web of expression which, right from
the most distant epochs, covers and interconnects our planet with a
system of basic signs which denote a uniform and convergent psychic
activity. The altruistic principle of equality could find an ulterior
scientific foundation thanks to the formal connotations which rock art
bequeaths us with its galleries of painted and carved rock surfaces
which, every day, enrich a patrimony already of a marvellous and
Congress delegates had the privilege of being ambassadors for the
importance and richness of this patrimony: the variety of the work
undertaken during the Congress constituted the most lively evidence.
On the 5th of September all delegates moved to Pinerolo in order to
manifest an important commitment: the signing of a document which
codified ethical behaviour and set down guidelines for professional
deontology for the safeguarding of rock art around the world. This Act
is called The Charter of Pinerolo and obliges in particular the
organisations of which IFRAO is composed to divulge and apply ethical
principles in the sphere of rock art. The day continued with a visit to
the CeSMAP and to the Museum of Prehistoric Art which has its
headquarters in the medieval Palace of the Senate of the Princes of
Acaja of Pinerolo, then to the rock art sites of the Cavour Rock
I close these findings with a cordial thanks for the generous
collaboration and enormous organisational work of the staff of the
CeSMAP; Robert Bednarik, Convener of IFRAO; Paul Bahn, Vice-President of
AURA; Angelo Fossati of the Archaeological Society of Valcamonica;
Alberto Vanelli; Paolo San Martino and Patrizia Picchi of Piedmont
Region and all Chairmen, which made this exceptional event possible.
Many thanks, ultimately, go to all of the delegates who came to Italy
from Asia, Australia, Africa, the Americas and Europe, with whose
contributions the International Rock Art Congress was realised for the
first time in Europe, in Turin and in Pinerolo.
The 1995 IFRAO Meeting
The 1995 AURA General Meeting
Exhibitions: Saharan rock art (by AARS - CeSMAP); San rock art (by
Pretoria University - CeSMAP); Fertility (by Tere Grindatto, Italy, and
Yashodhar Mathpal, India; modern and traditional artists).
Lectures: Antonio Beltrán, University of Zaragoza; Jean Clottes, Société
Préhistorique Ariège-Pyrénées; Sergio Ripoll, Madrid University; Vitor
Oliveira Jorge, Susana Oliveira Jorge, Mila Simões de Abreu, João
Zilhão, Oporto and Lisbon Univer-sities.
Gala Dinner: Medieval Castle of Buriasco (15th century), Pinerolo.
Charta Ethica: Deposit of signatures of the delegates at the Town Hall
of Pinerolo, on the Charta Ethica of rock art.
Prof. Dr Dario SEGLIE
NEWS95 Congress Co-Chairperson, IFRAO President 1994/95
Centro Studi e Museo d'Arte Preistorica CeSMAP
viale Giolitti 1
Tel. 121 794382
FAX 121 75547
NEW IFRAO MEMBERS
The Mid-America Geographic Foundation
The Mid-America Geographic Foundation was formed in 1993 as a
non-profit, educational/cultural organisation under both U.S. and
Wisconsin State laws. Money received by the Foundation is tax
deductible. The Foundation arose as a result of the work of Herman
Bender who had identified, and conducted research into, a number of
boulder arrangements (petroforms) in east-central Wisconsin. It has
since been discovered that there is a tight correlation between these
sites and prominent landforms along historic and prehistoric trails. In
addition, these sites align with springs and appear correlated with
Archaic cultural sites dating between 3000 and 5000 BP. These sites form
a primary research and conservation interest of the Foundation. The
introduction of high-voltage power lines through this environment has
led to extensive recent research into regional conservation. A report on
this research has been completed and will be published soon.
The Foundation has over 100 members. The President is Herman Bender, the
founder of the organisation. The Board of Directors consists of many
professional people from the region, and meets monthly at the University
of Wisconsin Center at Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, with which it is
affiliated. The Foundation address is: P.O. Box 722, Fond du Lac,
A newsletter is published at least six times per year. In addition to
rock art, the Foundation focuses on other archaeological and
environmental matters. The principle emphases are on conservation and
education. The organisation has very close ties with Wisconsin's
aboriginal groups, and is in the process of appointing tribal leaders to
a group that is advisory to the Board of Directors. The Foundation, the
twenty-fifth member of IFRAO, is expected to bid for the 1999 IFRAO
congress shortly. Its IFRAO Representative is:
Professor Jack Steinbring
Department of Anthropology
P.O. Box 248
RIPON, Wisconsin 54971
Moscow Centre of Rock Art and Bioindication Research
The Vjcrjdcrbq Wtynh gj bpextyb. Yfcrfkmyjuj bcreccndf b Mbjkjubxtcrjq
bylbrfwbb was founded on 21 July 1993 by the Russian Science Research
Institute of Natural and Cultural Heritage, which is attached to the
Russian Academy of Sciences. The Moscow Centre of Rock Art and
Bioindication Research is neither a commercial nor professionally
restrictive organisation. Its main purpose is to establish regional and
local rock art research centres and organisations all over Russia and
perhaps in some of the former Soviet republics. The Moscow Centre has
provided IFRAO with documentation showing its legal registration by the
Moscow Government Public Notary. Its executive officers are elected by
the membership. At the Turin NEWS95 congress, the Moscow Centre has been
unanimously elected as the twenty-sixth member of IFRAO. Its official
IFRAO Representative is its Chairman:
Moscow Centre of Rock Art and Bioindication Research
Ramenki, 11/1, 33
Armenian Centre of Prehistoric Art Study
The Armenian Centre of Prehistoric Art Study was founded on 19 June 1994
by the Historical-Archaeological Museum of Yerevan City and the Armenian
Academy of Sciences. It is structured similar to the Moscow Centre and
welcomes all interested scholars. The Armenian Centres principal
purpose is to research the abundant early forms of art in the Caucasus
region, and to co-ordinate its systematic activities in the field of
research and protection of rock art with similar organisations
elsewhere. The statutes of the Armenian Centre are in agreement with the
requirements prescribed by IFRAO for affiliation, and at the IFRAO
Business Meeting of 1995, the Centre was introduced by its Chairman and
accepted unanimously as the twenty-seventh member of IFRAO. The
nominated IFRAO Representative is:
Professor Ara Demirkhanian
Armenian Centre of Prehistoric Art Study
National Academy of Sciences of Armenia
Institute of Arts
Marshal Bagramian Prospect 24 G
The Society for Scientific Study of International Prehistoric Rock
Paintings and Rock Engravings
This German organisation is a recent addition to the international
family of rock art societies. It was founded on 10 June 1995 and
presented its application to join IFRAO at the Turin congress last
September. StoneWatch has a comprehensive democratic constitution. The
societys purposes include the study and documentation of rock paintings
and petroglyphs world-wide, the establishment of a data bank and a
literature archive, the co-operation with other rock art study groups
elsewhere, and the protection and restoration of rock art. StoneWatch
conducts excursions in Europe and elsewhere and produces various
publications. Among them is a new bi-lingual (German/English) journal,
StoneWatch Magazin, begun in January 1996. A major current publishing
project is an atlas of rock art, which will be bi-lingual and is
intended to appear about September 1997. For this purpose, StoneWatch is
asking for the help of rock art specialists around the world, requiring
three photographs from each rock art body or region, together with one
photograph of the typical landscape setting. Short descriptions of the
rock art are required from contributors, who will be named as co-authors
and will receive two free copies of the atlas.
StoneWatch was unanimously elected at Turin as the twenty-eighth
member of IFRAO. Its official IFRAO Representative is:
Professor Josef Otto
Verein für die Erforschung und Erhaltung der Altertümer, im speziellen
der Felsbilder in den österreichischen Alpen (Society for the Study and
Preservation of Antiquities, particularly the Rock Pictures in the
The society Anisa was founded in 1980 and has currently 98 members. Its
primary activity is the discovery, documentation and protection of the
rock art imagery in the limestone Alps of Austria and Bavaria. In this
context, Anisa (the name derives from the pre-Roman name of the river
Enns, in the heartland of the Hallstatt culture) organises
interdisciplinary research projects concerning the settlement of
high-altitude regions in the Alps. The society has produced the
Mitteilungen der Anisa since 1980 which contain scientific papers. As
part of Anisas publishing program, 28 Mitteilungen with 120 articles
have been produced so far (see Reviews & Abstracts section, this issue).
Other activities include excursions, systematic fieldwork, conferences,
lectures and exhibitions. Expressions of interest are encouraged, as
well as reports of new finds.
In 1986, Verein Anisa established its Austrian Central Archive,
which is the most comprehensive rock art archive in Austria. Of the
currently known c. 25 000 motifs, some 18 000 are documented on c.
10 000 photographs, as well as in video images, sketches and casts in
some cases. Verein Anisa has applied for IFRAO affiliation and, as a
result of a postal ballot, has been elected as the twenty-ninth member.
The IFRAO Representative of Verein Anisa is:
Prof. Dr Herta Mandl-Neumann
A-8967 Haus i. E.
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