Valcamonica Rock Art Field School and Fieldwork 2024

Location: Paspardo, IT

Season: July 18, 2024 to August 8, 2024

Session Dates: July 18-25; July 25-August 1; August 1-8 2024

Application Deadline: July 17, 2024

Deadline Type: Contact for Details


Discount for AIA members: 10%

Program Type:
Field School, Volunteer

RPA Certified:

Catholic University of the Sacred Heart (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore), Brescia, and Footsteps of Man Archaeological Cooperative Society (IFRAO member), ITALY

Project Director:
Prof. Angelo Eugenio FOSSATI

Project Description:

Application form >(pre-enrollment form):

or send a request to

Valcamonica rock art (the first World Heritage List site in UNESCO in Italy), is an alpine valley between the provinces of Bergamo and Brescia in Northern Italy. In Valcamonica  rock art constitutes an archaeological, artistic, ethnographic and historical patrimony of immense value, not only for its antiquity but, for the thematic and iconographic wealth. As an active rock art centre, member of IFRAO (International Federation of Rock Art Organizations), the Footsteps of Man together with the Catholic University of Brescia, organise  annual archaeology fieldwork at Paspardo, one of the major concentrations of engravings in the area, giving those interested (archaeologists and scholars, students and enthusiasts) the opportunity to help the research and learn how to study rock art at Valcamonica.

The project consists of different phases both at the sites and in the laboratory:

  • Site research (studying the rocks engraved in three main sites at Paspardo, Valcamonica: Dos Sottolaiolo, In Valle and Castello): surveys for finding new engraved rocks; analysis of the rock art conservation; cleaning; contact tracing (drawing of the art with permanent pens on plastic sheets); 3D models; DStretch analysis; photographs and GPS use; Insta360.
  • Laboratory work in Cerveno: scale reductions of the drawings; cataloguing the engravings; lessons and conferences on Valcamonica and alpine rock art as well on other areas of the world; lessons on proto historic numismatic and the drawing of archaeological objects.

Participants will learn (training will be given) how to work with rock art: they will study how to address conservation challenges; they will  be able to record and draw rock engravings; they will  learn  how to highlight rock art to better record and photograph them; they will obtain a good general understanding of the rock art in Valcamonica and the Alpine area.

During each week-long fieldwork session, participants will also have evening lectures on rock art subjects delivered by scholars of international fame, watch films, and have the opportunity to visit other rock art sites (such as the National Park of Naquane, at Capo di Ponte, the park of Foppe di Nadro, at Ceto, and the Park of Bedolina-Seradina at Capo di Ponte, Luine Park in Boario Terme), the two National Museums (the Prehistoric and the Roman) and some medieval churches with beautiful frescoes and sculptures.

Participants usually come from different countries around the world, official languages are English and Italian. Portugues, Spanish and French are also sometimes used. In Cerveno, where the seat of the Footsteps of Man is, accommodation is provided in two houses with common rooms,  (from 2 to 3 beds in each room), shared  bathrooms and showers and  kitchens. Volunteers should bring: personal towels, work clothes, work gloves, gym shoes, sleeping bag, sun cream, sun hat and sun glasses, anti-covid masks. Full information including travel to Cerveno from Italian airports and a bibliography will be given to participants.

Period(s) of Occupation: Neolithic to Medieval Time

This is the original and the oldest field school in Valcamonica! Since 1988 we are working on rock art made by prehistoric and protohistoric people mainly during the Neolithic (six thousands years ago), Bronze Age and Iron Age (from four thousands to two thousands years ago). Learn how to trace the rock art and help us in discovering new rocks engraved!

Project Size: 1-24 participants

Minimum Length of Stay for Volunteers: One session (one week)

Minimum Age: 16

Experience Required: Keen eyes and open mind

Room and Board Arrangements:
In Cerveno accommodation is provided in two houses with rooms, showers and kitchens. Volunteers should bring: personal towels, work clothes and gloves, gym shoes, sleeping bag, sun cream, sun hat, sun glasses and anti-covid19 masks. Weekly fee covers board and lodging, tuition, reading and work equipment, but not fares. A deposit is payable – details from organizers. Cost: €600 per week covering: food, lodging, working material, tuitions, lectures, general insurance, local transports.

Academic Credit:
Participants obtain a certificate of attendance useful to get credits credits offered by their university. All participants and students receive tuition in rock art archaeology, several lessons on rock art traditions in the world.

Contact Information:

Prof. Angelo Eugenio Fossati

Piazzale donatori di Sangue, 1



Italy or

Phone: +39.3332875920

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