Preloader image

International conference “L’uomo cosciente”. Art and its Origins. Carlo Ludovico Ragghianti in his aftermath

International conference

Florence, Museo e Istituto Fiorentino di Preistoria, Thursday, September 30th 2021
Lucca, Fondazione Ragghianti, Friday 1st and Saturday 2nd October 2021

The Fondazione Ragghianti (Lucca) and the Museo e Istituto Fiorentino di Preistoria (Florence), on the occasion of the fortieth anniversary of Carlo Ludovico Ragghianti’s “L’uomo cosciente. Arte e conoscenza nella paleostoria”, published in 1981, organize the international conference L’uomo cosciente. Art and its Origins. Carlo Ludovico Ragghianti in his aftermath”.

The conference, curated by Tommaso Casini, Annamaria Ducci and Fabio Martini, with the collaboration of Valentina Bartalesi, is scheduled from September 30 to October 2nd, 2021, in Florence (September 30 2021, Museo e Istituto Fiorentino di Preistoria) and Lucca (October 1st, 2nd 2021, Fondazione Ragghianti). A virtual exhibition entitled “Paolo Graziosi e Carlo Ludovico Ragghianti. Riflessioni, dialoghi ed eredità sull’arte delle origini” will be also visible from September 30th on both of the two institutions websites.

As a result of a twenty-year gestation and almost a critical testament of the great scholar from Lucca, the monumental monograph “L’uomo cosciente” is of the utmost relevance for its innovative analysis of prehistoric art, aiming to redeem that remote time. Crucial for Ragghianti was the meeting with Paolo Graziosi, anthropologist and palethnologist of Florence University, considered among the most outstanding European scholars of prehistoric visual culture.
It is important to note that Carlo Ludovico Ragghianti defined this profound time, not as “prehistory” but “paleo-history”, or the “history of the first men”. Nevertheless, despite its originality in the Italian cultural panorama of the early 1980s, that volume did not receive adequate recognition.
In the conference poster’s image, the term “before”, as opposed to “art | art”, emphasizes the art historian’s innovative view of a temporal continuity between paleo-history, paleo-art and the contemporary era.

The most recent acquisitions in the studies of prehistoric art, evolutionary aesthetics, and neuroscience will be presented in the scheduled conference. In addition, the protection, conservation and appreciation of prehistoric art will be discussed.

Finally, a screening of Werner Herzog’s documentary “Cave of Forgotten Dreams”, devoted to the paintings and graffiti of the Chauvet Cave, will be held on October 1st 2021, in collaboration with the Lucca Film Festival. Thus, the German director’s masterpiece will be presented and commented precisely ten years after its release.

The goal of the conference is to encourage a critical debate that, starting from Ragghianti’s book, recognizes its cultural value within the history of the arts.





Tommaso Casini (Università IULM, Milano)

Annamaria Ducci (Accademia di Belle Arti, Carrara)

Fabio Martini (Università di Firenze)

in collaboration with Valentina Bartalesi (Università IULM, Milano)

Preloader image