Convention at the Italian Geographic Society

1909 – 2009: One Hundred Years of glaciology and photography in Karakorum. Problems and results of an age-old symbiosis” is the title of the conference that took place on October 15th at the prestigious location of the Italian Geographic Society. The conference was organized by Macromicro association in collaboration with the Italian Geographic Society and with the contribution of Enel Green Power, the Enel company dedicated to the development and management of renewable sources in Italy and around the world,

During the conference were analyzed the relationship and symbiosis between glaciology and photography, in particular applied to the study of glaciers in the Karakoram mountains, which always had a special relationship with Italy. It has been explained motivations, techniques and results of the study of glaciers as indicators of the current climate and of its evolution over the time; it has also been retraced the history of photography of the region, from the exploratory expeditions of the early ’900 to date, with a special emphasis on the use of these images for scientific purposes related to glaciological studies and beyond.

Two of the world’s leading experts in the field of glaciology  (Prof. Claudio Smiraglia of Milan University and Prof. Kenneth Hewitt of Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada), illustrated the glaciological studies carried out during the expedition and the contribution these made along with photography, especially by the comparison between historical and modern photographic images.

Furthermore, Fabiano Ventura, mountain photographer and president of Macromicro, rertraced the history of photography in this region and explained the technical aspects of high altitude photography. In particular, he described the 2009 expedition to Karakoram as planned in the photographic-scientific project “On the Trails of the Glaciers” in which he retraced the footsteps of the first photographers and explorers of the region to repeat their historical shots from the same point of view. Ventura then delineated the future development of the project, mainly talking about the second expedition that is planned for summer of 2011 in the Caucasus region.

During the convention had been exposed a selection of images coming from the photographic exhibition “On the Trails of Glacier.” 1909-2009: a century of climate changes on glaciers in the Karakoram”, which already exhibited with great success last March at the Sala S. Rita of Rome; a comparison of historical and modern photographs of the glaciers in that region, made by photographers Vittorio Sella (1909), Massimo Terzano (1929) and Fabiano Ventura (2009). The exhibition is composed of large photographic high-quality prints made by the 10b photography laboratory with Epson inkjet printing technology.

An audio version of the conference is available here


Programme of the Convention

15:30/15:45 Franco Salvatori
President of the Italian Geographic Society
Fabiano Ventura
Mountain Photographer
President of Macromicro Association
Convention opening and official greetings
Felice Egidi
Head of Regulatory Affairs
Enel Green Power
Renewable energies as friends of our planet
Prof. Claudio Smiraglia
State University of Milan
Department of Earth Sciences
Former President of the Italian Glaciologic Committee
Investigating on glaciers from Antarctica to Karakoram: meanings and targets of the studies on cryosphere.
Prof. Kenneth Hewitt
Professor Emeritus of Geography and Environment Studies
Researcher at the Cold Regions Research Centre
Wilfrid Laurier University
Waterloo (Ontario), Canada
From the high ground: images, mainly photographic, and scientific understanding of Karakoram glaciers, 1846-2010
Prof. Claudio Smiraglia
State University of Milan
Department of Earth Sciences
Former President of the Italian Glaciologic Committee
At the foot of K2: a century of charts and photographies as a contribution to the knowledge of Baltoro, the Italians’ Glacier.
Fabiano Ventura
Mountain Photographer
President of the Macromicro Association
The project “On the Trails of the Glaciers” and the technical issues of high altitude photography.
Smiraglia, Hewitt, Ventura Conclusions and discussion with the public.


Click here to download the press release
Click here to download the convention poster



1909-2009: One hundred years of Glaciology and Photography in Karakoram. Problems and results of a secular symbiosis.


Wednesday, October 15, 2010
15:30 – 18:30
Free admission

Sala delle conferenze della Società Geografica Italiana
Palazzetto Mattei in Villa Celimontana
Via della Navicella 12, Rome

For information:

  • Italian Geographic Society Press Office
    Ph. 06/7008279
  • Macromicro Association Press Office
    Ph. 06/452217040






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