An exhibition on Frederick II and his De Arte venandi cum avibus in the castles of Castel del Monte, Bari and Trani

“The power of harmony. Frederick II and his De Arte venandi cum avibus” is the title of the exhibition that is currently open in the castles of Castel del Monte, Bari and Trani and that aims at promoting the legendary treatise by the Emperor and its relationship with current issues.

A series of prominent personalities were involved in the exhibition because of the excellence each of them represent in their own specific field of expertise. The Maestro Riccardo Muti, hailing from the territories where Castel del Monte rises up, has chosen the music that leads the exhibition visitors through the view and reading of the famous Treatise. The President of Enciclopedia Federiciana Treccani Hon. Ortensio Zecchino is the author of the photographs displayed, which update the Treatise and were shot in the territories where Frederick II used to go hunting. Anna Laura Trombetti is full professor of medieval history at the University of Bologna and one of the best experts of the Treatise, since she edited its critical edition besides the first complete Italian translation. For the exhibition, Professor Trombetti has realized the scientific structure on which the exhibition is organized. Last but not least, Piero Pizzi Cannella is the founder of Nuova Scuola Romana and one of the biggest exponents of the figurative art. For the exhibition the artist painted the Treatise pages and an impressive scenic design, which is now mounted at Castel del Monte.

The exhibition was realized by “Il Cigno” Publishing House, “Novapulia”, in cooperation with Alma Mater Studiorum – University of Bologna and the Center of Norman-Swabian Studies (Centro di Studi Normanno-Svevo). Moreover, the exhibition is organized in three steps: Castel del Monte welcomes the visitors and lead them into the Treatise by favoring the artworks by Pizzi Cannella; in Bari one can admire the extraordinary photographic campaign by Ortension Zecchino, mainly shot between the geographical regions of Murgia and Tavoliere delle Puglie; in Trani the multimedia aspect is favored through the use of videos that allow to virtually leaf through both the original Treatise pages and its translations. During the opening ceremony of the exhibition the Treatise translations into Arabic and Italian were presented.

"Islam and the Mediterranean" International Conference

The International Conference “Islam and the Mediterranean in Modern Times” was held at the prestigious premises of Palazzo Rasponi in the city center of Ravenna on 3rd and 4th May 2018. The Conference was promoted by the King Abdulaziz Chair for Islamic Studies, in cooperation with the Bologna University Department of Cultural Heritage and Fondazione Flaminia.

A sizeable number of presentations were delivered by lecturers coming from different countries like Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Algeria, the Palestinian territories, Turkey, France, Spain, Germany, the Netherlands and Italy, where they all hold prominent academic and institutional positions. The Conference opened with the institutional greetings by the Bologna University Vice Rector for International Relations Prof. Alessandra Scagliarini, followed by the Saudi Arabia Royal Embassy Cultural Attaché Prof. Abdulaziz al-Gharib, the Rector's delegate for International Relations with Arab Countries Prof. Ahmad Addous, the Chair Scientific Director Prof. Anna Laura Trombetti, the Ravenna city Councilor for the University Dr. Ouidad Bakkali and Mirella Falconi, the Vice President of Fondazione Flaminia. 

The event saw the participation of professors, students and interested people, who attended the presentations that followed one another and a lively debate among scholars in which various languages such as Arabic, Italian, English and French, harmoniously mingled in a climate of cooperation and mutual understanding. The Conference also laid the foundations for the further steps of the dialogue between the two shores of the Mediterranean basin.

The Arabic translation of De arte venandi cum avibus has been published

In the frame of the King Abdulaziz Chair for Islamic Studies projects for the academic year 2017-2018, the first Arabic translation (with an introduction) of the important falconry treatise De arte venandi cum avibus by Emperor Frederick II (1194-1250) has been recently published (April 2018) by Il Cigno Publishing House based in Rome.

The prestigious edition (675 pp.) was edited by the Chair Scientific Director Prof. Anna Laura Trombetti, who is also an expert in the field of falconry. The edition opens with an introduction by Prof. Trombetti dedicated to falconry between East and West and is enriched with numerous pictures of falconers and birds of prey by Prof. Ortensio Zecchino.

Prof. Trombetti is the author of the critical edition of the Latin treatise by Frederick II and of various translations in Italian. Shortly a new edition will be published by the same publisher and edited by Prof. Trombetti. The work will be presented in various occasions, both in Italy and abroad.

Forlì: “Music and poetry between East and West” concert

The concert “Music and poetry between East and West” was held at the Music Institute “Angelo Masini” on 14th March 2018. The concert was promoted by the King Abdulaziz Chair for Islamic Studies, in cooperation with the Bologna University Department of Interpreting and Translation (Forlì Campus), Department of the Arts, the Arab Academy of Forlì, the Cultural association “Il Saggiatore musicale” and with the patronage of Forlì Municipality.  

The artists Monica Colonna (soprano), Mauro Corna (bass) and Stefano Malferrari (piano) interpreted musical compositions by Gioachino Rossini, Franz Liszt and Giuseppe Verdi, alternating with readings of classical and contemporary Arabic poetry performed by the Arabic language students of the Bologna University, directed by Sara Nanni.

The evening opened with the greetings by Prof. Anna Laura Trombetti, Chair Scientific Director, followed by the presentations of Prof. Ahmad Addous and the student Giada Boilini, who introduced the poetical readings in Arabic and the musical performances.


Third lecture on the fables and poems of the Arab world

The third and last lecture dedicated to Arabic literature was held at the Art and History Library of San Giorgio in Poggiale in Bologna city center on Thursday 8th March 2018. The lecture was promoted by the King Abdulaziz Chair for Islamic Studies with the purpose of presenting some of the most significant examples of the Arab fables and poems. 

The event saw the participation of professors, students and interested people. It was introduced by the institutional greetings of Professor Anna Laura Tormbetti, Chair Scientific Director, which were followed by Professor Francesca Roversi Monaco’s (University of Bologna) introduction and Professor Ahmad Addous’ (University of Bologna) lecture on the Arabic poetry.