1.         Rock Drawings in Valcamonica (Italy) (C 94)

Year of inscription on the World Heritage List  1979

Criteria  (iii)(vi)

Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger  N/A

Previous Committee Decisions  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/94/documents/

International Assistance

Requests approved: 0
Total amount approved: USD 0
For details, see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/94/assistance/

UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds


Previous monitoring missions


Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

Illustrative material  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/94/

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2004

Archaeologists and concerned citizens alerted the World Heritage Centre of a number of conservation issues at the property. The wooden walkway at rock No. 57 has been removed in 2003 to be replaced by a galvanized steel walkway drilled directly into the rock. The installation of steel walkways might be extended to other rock art areas.  ICOMOS strongly advised against such a construction using metal, as it is a heavy intrusion into the rock panel even if the structure may be removable. 


Furthermore, the construction of a road immediately adjacent to the site has been reported to the World Heritage Centre. Although the project has apparently been stopped due to financial constraints, the completed section of the road has impacted the rock art site of Paspardo. The landscape around the property seems to have been further compromised by a newly built power line in the vicinity of the property. The State Party has not informed the World Heritage Centre of any of these infrastructure developments.


Since the inscription of the property in 1979, the State Party has not clearly defined the boundaries of the property nor elaborated a management and conservation plan. ICOMOS regretted the lack of adequate boundaries and a comprehensive management plan, which means that no mechanism exists to consider the above-mentioned infrastructure developments against the responsibilities of the State Party under the World Heritage Convention. While an annual number of visitors of 60,000 is reported, impacts of tourism are not addressed nor monitored, and the on-site presentation of the rock art is inappropriate without the indication of its World Heritage status. While ICOMOS acknowledged the achievements made in the fields of rock art research and public education, it also noted with concern that available funding from the national authorities for such activities continue to decrease over the years.


At the time of the preparation of the document, the Italian authorities have not responded to the requests by the World Heritage Centre to provide comments on the state of conservation of the site. ICOMOS was concerned about the state of conservation of the property and it encouraged the State Party to invite a mission in order to evaluate the situation and to respond to the conservation problems as soon as possible.


Analysis and Conclusions of the World Heritage Centre, ICOMOS and ICCROM


Decision Adopted: 28 COM 15B.73

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Recalling paragraph 56 of the Operational Guidelines,

2. Regrets the apparent construction of a road immediately adjacent to the property, and the apparent building of a high voltage power line without informing the Committee beforehand in accordance with paragraph 56 of the Operational Guidelines (2002) ;

3. Requests the State Party to clarify the boundaries of the property ;

4. Urges the State Party to develop a management plan that addresses conservation issues, development control, tourism management and future rock art research ;

5. Encourages the State Party to improve the presentation of the property, by clearly indicating its World Heritage status on-site and by providing more information on the property and its rock art ;

6. Requests the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies to undertake a mission to the site, in co-operation with the State Party, to review the state of conservation of the property ;

7. Further requests the State Party to provide to the World Heritage Centre an updated report by 1 February 2005 for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 29th session in 2005. This report should include:
a) clarification of the status of the infrastructure development in the vicinity of the property, including road construction and high voltage power line,
b) an update on the construction of metal walkway, particularly on Rock No 57,
c) progress made towards developing a management plan, and
d) detailed maps indicating the boundaries of the World Heritage property.