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Joint Cartography Conference in Venice (dates to be confirmed)


Venice, Italy
Organisation: The Brussels Map Circle
During the past months, the Management and Members of the Brussels Map Circle and the Italian old map collectors association Roberto Almagià have received with much interest and enthusiasm the proposal of our Member Alex Smit to organise again a joint meeting. Many of our Members still remember the excellent joint meeting organised by Wouter Bracke in Rome in May 2016 (see Maps in History No 56). This idea came up first when Alex Smit accompanied a small Italian delegation to our 20th anniversary meeting in Antwerp in December 2018 (Maps in History No 63).
After several meetings to evaluate various options, the city of Venice was selected as the venue for a conference to be held in October 2020. Venice is the city of many famous cartographers, such as Fra Mauro, Forlani, Bertelli, Gastaldi and Coronelli. The libraries such as Marciana, Correr, Querini, of the Universities and State archives have very interesting map collections. The conference would focus on the interaction between cartographers of Italy and the Netherlands during the period 1550 to 1750, regarding exchanges, copying and pirating, which took place extensively (and without shame). The idea is to start on a Thursday afternoon, end on Saturday afternoon and alternate between lectures and visits to famous libraries.
For the organisation a small team has been composed of the president of Roberto Almagià, Emilio Moreschi, Prof. Vladimiro Valerio and Alex Smit. Emilio Moreschi lives part of the year in Venice and is very well introduced in different associations there. Many thanks to Prof. Vladimiro Valerio, who has volunteered to take care of the scientific aspects of the conference. Until recently he lectured at Venice University and is internationally recognised as a leading expert in Italian history of cartography. He is very well known in academic circles in Venice and lives there since many years.
Participants in the Mapping Africa conference in December 2019 will recall that, when presenting the Venice project, Alex Smit hoped that it could be hosted in the beautiful conference facility with rooms of the CINI Foundation on the Isola San Giorgio. Unfortunately this will not be possible. The Circle is investigating other potential conference facilities in the centre of Venice. The recent frequent flooding of Venice, which created widespread damage, is making things more difficult.
The dates will be confirmed as soon as a suitable conference centre has been reserved. And the Circle will make recommendations to organise the participants’ lodging in the vicinity. This will be announced on our website, by e-mail and in the next issue of Maps in History.