Know and make known

The Giancarlo Ligabue Foundation was established in 2016 to give continuity to the Ligabue Study and Research Center – founded by Giancarlo Ligabue in 1973 – which has promoted and organized 130 expeditions to all continents with the collaboration of scientists from the world’s leading universities and research centres. The discoveries made in forty years of activity are now part of the history of palaeontology, archaeology and ethnology.
The Foundation has decided to continue the activity of CSRL, in view of the priceless heritage inherited and inspired by the passion of Giancarlo (who passed away in January 2015), with a renewed organizational system and new cultural initiatives. In fact, one of the purposes of the Giancarlo Ligabue Foundation is to promote and disseminate culture and research also through events open to the public, thematic exhibitions, conferences, publications, scientific consulting, restorations and philanthropic donations, both in Italy and abroad.
A journey that goes on, a story that adds a new motto to the intellectual adventure that has extended from Venice to all continents for decades: “Know and make known”.

Alberto Angela – editorial director of Ligabue Magazine, the bilingual biannual magazine that has been published for more than 40 years – has defined the newly founded Giancarlo Ligabue Foundation as “an ark of knowledge, capable of fascinating and surprising anyone with a hunger for knowledge”.

Inti Ligabue

Massimo Casarin
Honorary Vice President

Alessandro Danesin

Giovanni Diaz

Gianluca Ferrarese
Executive General Secretary

Scientific Committee

Armand Beisenov
Director of Begazy-Tasmola Institute of History and Archaeology, Almaty, Kazakhstan

Fabrizio Bizzarini
Professor of Paleontology and Natural Sciences, University of Urbino

Annie Caubet
Honorary Curator of the Louvre Museum (1988-2006)

Luisa Cogliati Arano
Professor of History of Art and History of Miniature. Deep connoisseur of Leonardo da Vinci’s genius

André Delpuech
Chief Curator and Head of the American Collections at the Musée du quai Branly – Jacques Chirac, Paris

Davide Domenici
Professor in the Department of History, Cultures, Civilizations, University of Bologna

Donald Johanson
Professor of Anthropology at Arizona State University. Founder, president and director of the Institute of Human Origins

Federico Kauffmann Doig
Professor of Near Eastern Archaeology, University of Udine

Gunter Konrad
Doctor at Maria Hilf Hospital, Mönchengladbach, Germania

Carl Lamberg Karlovsky
Professor of Anthropology at Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA

Giorgio Manzi
Professor of Anthropology at Università La Sapienza, Rome

Pietro Marani
Professor of History of Modern Art, Department of Design, Politecnico di Milano

Mario Polia
Archaeologist, anthropologist and ethnographer. Specialist in religious anthropology and history of religions

Giandomenico Romanelli
Professor of History of Architecture, IUAV, Venice. Former Director of the Civic Museums and member of the Istituto Veneto di Scienze, Lettere e Arti

Philip Taquet
Palaeontologist. Former Director of the National Museum of Natural History of Paris and President of the Academy of Sciences.

Mila Tommaseo
Professor of Anthropology, University of Padua

Nicholas Toth
Vice Director of the Stone Age Institute, Bloomington, Indiana, USA

Julien Volper
Curator of the Royal Museum for Central Africa, Terveren, Belgium


Gianluca Ferrarese
Communication | Events
Lucia Berti
Head of Programs | Organization office
Silvia Lattuada
Head of Collection
Cecilia Riva
Exhibition project manager | Technical Department
Elisa Bissacco
Social Media Manager | Copywriter
Margherita Maiani
Press Office
Villaggio Globale International

Giancarlo Ligabue

A polyhedric man, thirsty for life, with a thousand interests in various fields of activity. He was always ready to follow his instinct, which led him to the most disparate experiences, thanks to his innate ability to create with his collaborators an immediate current of sympathy and sharing. He developed countless cultural and entrepreneurial projects, engaging all the actors with contagious enthusiasm.

Giancarlo Ligabue was born in Venice in 1931. He attended the Universities of Cà Foscari (Venice) and Boston, and obtained a PhD in Palaeontology at the Sorbonne University in Paris, followed by four other honorary degrees. At the age of 28, he began working at Ligabue S.p.A. – today a world leader in the catering and naval supply sector – expanding the business started by his father Anacleto in 1919 all over the world.
It can be said that he was predestined to know and travel.
His greatest achievement as an entrepreneur was to take the company’s activities beyond the national borders, still the Group’s strong point, and to diversify its activities. He took Ligabue from the seas to the most remote areas and finally to the heights of air catering: sky, sea, land.

At the same time, he cultivated his passions for archaeology, palaeontology and anthropology. This allowed him to combine cultural and entrepreneurial interests, which intertwine and support each other, creating an image of great reliability that still distinguishes the name Ligabue. 

In 1973 he founded the Ligabue Study and Research Center. In forty years of activity, he promoted over 130 important expeditions with prestigious scientists and experts.
Everything is documented by hundreds of publications and over 70 scientific documentaries.

As a young man, he obtained the pilot’s license for tourist planes and participated in numerous road and motorboat races. In the Seventies he became president of the Reyer Sports Club, relaunching the Venetians’ beloved basketball team at the highest levels.
In his journey of life, we remember also a political parenthesis with the election to the European Parliament in the period 1994-1999, an office he held with great commitment and active participation.
He received many awards, including the Unesco Prize in Paris for communication and scientific dissemination and the designation of Honorary Consul of Sweden in Venice. In addition, he was awarded the Cross of Grand Officer of the Polar Star of Sweden. He deserved the recognition of Venetian citizen of the year 1985 and received the Keys of the city in 2005 by the then Mayor Massimo Cacciari.
On January 26, 2015 Giancarlo Ligabue passed away. Exactly one year later his son Inti announced the birth of the Giancarlo Ligabue Foundation, the legacy of the values and cultural heritage of the Study Center strongly loved and animated by his father’s passion.
Inti Ligabue
Inti Ligabue was born in April 1981 and represents the third generation at the helm of the Ligabue Group, which boasts more than 100 years of history.
He joined the company at the end of his university course in Business Administration at the University of Bologna – to which he added a Master’s degree in Administration, Finance and Control at SDA Bocconi and various other refresher courses. Inti Ligabue has worked in managerial roles in various divisions of the Group, bringing with him competence, enthusiasm and determination to achieve increasingly prestigious goals.
Since 2012 he has been CEO, and since 2016 also President, of the Group that he leads in line with the vision and philosophy inherited from the founder, Anacleto Ligabue, and his father Giancarlo.

As a child, he began to travel with his father and took part in some of the most important expeditions promoted by the Ligabue Study and Research Center, such as the paleoanthropological expedition to the Olduvai Gorge (Tanzania) and various others in South America. These experiences developed his interest in the visual arts and in pre-Columbian and tribal art.
Inti collected the inheritance of the cultural heritage accumulated thanks to the activity of the Study Center, he transformed in January 2016 into the Giancarlo Ligabue Foundation, of which he is Chairman. 
From 2016 to date, the Foundation has organized five exhibitions, hundreds of educational workshops, cycles of conferences and other live events. The Foundation also carries on prestigious publishing activities. Moreover, many other fascinating projects are planned for the near future.