ICCROM has signed a six-year partnership project – World Heritage Leadership – with the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) at the IUCN World Conservation Congress in Hawaii, United States. Made possible with generous funding from Norway, the partnership project marks new steps to improve nature-culture conservation practice carried out through the World Heritage Convention, and aims to support the contribution of World Heritage sites to sustainable development.
World Heritage Leadership aims to build the skills of practitioners working through the World Heritage Convention. It takes into account the totality of conservation practice, so that World Heritage can provide leadership to achieve innovation and excellence within the conservation sector. This focus beyond World Heritage marks a new approach to the long-standing partnership between ICCROM and IUCN, two advisory bodies on cultural and natural World Heritage respectively. Continue reading…
Martin Kobler closes the International Experts Meeting on Safeguarding Libyan Cultural Heritage
Practical actions to engage civil society, municipalities, customs and security services in protecting Libya’s numerous cultural heritage sites and in combating illicit traffic.
The International Experts Meeting on Safeguarding Libyan Cultural Heritage ended today in Tunis.
The three-day workshop sought to identify practical actions to engage civil society, customs and security services in protecting Libya’s numerous cultural heritage sites and in combating illicit trafficking through projects designed to safeguard the country’s shared cultural assets.
The meeting was organized by the Libyan Department of Antiquities, the Rome-based International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property (ICCROM) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), with the support of the United States Embassy to Libya in Tunis. Continue reading…
The Libyan Department of Antiquities in partnership with international experts, and the Rome-based International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property (ICCROM), will meet in Tunis from 9-11 May. Their common goal is to discuss and develop a comprehensive action plan which will include concrete steps, benchmarks, and mechanisms to engage the civil society in the protection of Libya’s numerous cultural heritage sites threatened by conflict and plunder. The meeting will also explore ways of fostering reconciliation and strengthening civil society through projects designed to protect the country’s shared cultural assets.
Marie Lavandier, President of Council, addressed His Highness Dr Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, on Thursday in order to thank him for support given to conservation of cultural heritage in the Arab region through the Sharjah-based ICCROM-ATHAR (Architectural and Archaeological Tangible Heritage in the Arab Region) Regional Conservation Centre.
Mme Lavandier’s speech took place at the award ceremony for “Best Practices for Conservation of Cultural Heritage in the Arab World,” an annual ICCROM-ATHAR prize which coincides with the start of the Sharjah Heritage Days. During the ceremony, 13 projects from 10 countries were honoured with prizes for excellence.
In her address, Mme Lavandier noted the five areas of action where ICCROM-ATHAR activity has produced favourable results: capacity building and education; dissemination of knowledge; policy development; specific restoration projects in the region; and public outreach to target audiences including schools.
She expressed profound gratitude to His Highness Dr Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, for his “vision, inspiration and commitment to a brighter future for the Arab culture.”
Also in attendance were Dr Zaki Aslan, Regional Representative of ICCROM for the Arab States and Director of the Centre, and Sophy Janowski, Chief Management Officer, ICCROM.
The agreement consolidates the collaboration ongoing since 1992 between NRICP and ICCROM for the organisation of training events for paper conservation. It will strengthen a partnership which has succeeded since 2003 in foreseeing implementation of the International Course on Conservation of Japanese Paper.
The MoU was signed by Prof Stefano De Caro, Director-General of ICCROM, and Dr Nobuo Kamei, Director of NRICP. Also in attendance were Dr Masato Kato, researcher at NRICP, Katriina Similä, Project Manager, ICCROM and Akiko Umezu, Project Manager, ICCROM.
This MoU forms the basis for implementing the joint hosting of international training courses concerning Japanese restoration techniques of washi, or Japanese paper. The training course will be hosted by the independent administrative institution of NRICP once a year in Japan. ICCROM is pleased to be able to reconfirm this longstanding collaboration with Japan, and is grateful for the commitment of the Japanese heritage authorities to this joint activity.
Italy’s Minister of Cultural Heritage and Tourism, Hon. Dario Franceschini announced last week the approval of a three-year, 300 million euro investment programme for the protection of cultural heritage, which will include a 2.5 million euro allocation of funds to complete the restoration of the Monumental Complex of San Francesco a Ripa, ICCROM’s new headquarters.
“This investment of 300 million euros on 241 interventions throughout Italy confirms how culture has returned to the centre of national politics,” said Minister Franceschini. “From art to archaeology, from libraries to archives, from museums to the excellence of restoration, there is no cultural heritage sector that is not receiving a significant boost in financial and political terms from this government”.
This commitment to ICCROM signifies the importance Italy places on international efforts for cultural heritage protection, a commitment that has grown over the past 60 years since ICCROM was established on Italian territory.
On 16 December, ICCROM was invited to participate in the latest edition of Farnesina Porte Aperte, an initiative in which the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MAECI) opens its doors to the general public. This recent event was dedicated to celebrating the 60th anniversary of Italy’s accession to the United Nations. Organized by the Unit of Analysis, Planning and Historical Diplomatic Documentation of the Ministry, the programme was divided into thematic sessions. ICCROM was called upon to contribute to a session dedicated to cultural cooperation.
Italy’s entry into the United Nations coincides with the period in which countries came together to create what is now ICCROM, and established its headquarters in Rome. Continue reading…
Statement from Dr emeritus Wolf-Dieter Heilmeyer, Director, Antikensammlung (Collection of Classical Antiquities), Staatliche Museen zu Berlin:
As a contribution to the “Art and Culture” section at the Olympia Symposium entitled “The need for Constructive Dialogue between Peoples and Cultures” (Ancient Olympia, 1-7 September 2015), the lecture “The importance of international collaboration for the protection of national cultural properties” took account* of the ongoing “discrepancy between archaeology as a science oriented towards contextual evidence, protection of monuments and commitment to enlightenment, and the fate of archaeological objects that have been torn out of context, robbed of their provenance, and looted from devastated pits: objects that year after year arrive illegally on the antiquities market, in private collections and museums.”** The reasons for withholding documentation of these objects, namely their illegal excavation and unlawful export from the country of origin, are judicially intolerable. Every day our newspapers are full of recently plundered sites in regions endangered by war. Continue reading…
Considerations from ICCROM’s 29th General Assembly
Nations of the world have been in Paris debating ways in which to tackle climate change and its impact, and how to commit to shared strategies and joint action. This challenge requires global vision and cooperation, and all sectors have a part to play. In this regard, heritage has an important contribution to make as a driver for sustainable societies and human development. ICCROM urges the cultural heritage sector in its Member States to engage actively in this effort.
At the ICCROM 29th General Assembly, a thematic discussion on “Climate Change, natural disasters and cultural heritage: Culture cannot wait!” highlighted the need to integrate cultural heritage in the global risk agenda as a vital resource for building back resilient communities. Keynote speaker Jerry Velasquez of the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) outlined progress towards this end through the Sendai Framework. However, as threats due to extreme weather events increase, a key issue is the lack of data to estimate the extent and value of heritage losses.
Other contributions from invited speakers also showed how working closely with communities and grassroots initiatives can raise awareness with younger generations. For example, in the Philippines, climate change and disaster risk reduction are included in secondary school curricula. Continue reading…
On 26 November, Dr Stefano De Caro, Director-General of ICCROM, received the Honourable Dario Franceschini, Italy’s minister of cultural heritage and tourism (Ministro dei Beni e delle Attività Culturali e del Turismo, or MiBACT). Minister Franceschini’s visit to ICCROM occurs the week after his address to ICCROM’s General Assembly, on the role of Italy and the international community in preserving heritage as a means towards social development and peaceful coexistence between cultures. His address noted ICCROM’s important role in training and heritage protection, particularly in crisis-affected areas. Continue reading…