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IMPORTANT INFORMATION » Our Monthly Newsletter ITA -

Palazzo Pitti

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Rent, Sell and Manage Properties in Florence and Tuscany

April Fish Day (Pesce d'Aprile) or Italy's April Fool's Day starts out the month, so watch for fishy jokes. On Easter Sunday join the crowds to celebrate the Scoppio del Carro - the Explosion of the Cart. Then head to the Island of Elba for Walking Tuscany

Wishing you an April filled with sunshine and flowers from SUZANNE, CORSO, BEI, SANDRA, LORI, ANNA PIA, ANN and MARIO.


BEST EXTRAVAGANZA FOR APRIL – Scoppio del Carro on Easter Sunday

Between 10 and 11 o'clock on Easter Sunday morning, a tradition that has played out annually over the last 500 years will be celebrated in front of the Duomo in Florence. The Scoppio del Carro, or Explosion of the Cart, is a mixed pagan/religious ceremony. Marking both Easter and Spring, the successful ignition of the cart guarantees good crops, a successful harvest, stable civic life and bountiful trade, as well as signifying the passage of new holy fire to light those extinguished on Good Friday.

A thirty-foot carved and painted wooden cart (the present version is over 150 years old) is pulled by flower-bedecked white oxen from Porta al Prato to Piazza del Duomo. A mechanical dove ‘flies' down a line through the open doors of the cathedral, picks up ‘fire' at the altar, returns to the cart and ignites the explosion of one of the best daytime fireworks display in the world.

It was during the pontificate of Leo X (Giovanni de'Medici, 1513-1521), the ‘colombina‘ - the mechanical bird, shaped like a dove with an olive branch in its beak - was used for the first time. At the Gloria of the Easter Mass, the deacon uses holy fire kindled from the stone chips - obtained during the crusades of 1099 from the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem - to light a fuse attached to the dove.

BEST PARADE IN APRIL – Scoppio del Carro: Before & After

Due to the incredible crowds packed into the piazza in front of the Duomo, the best place to get a view of the oxen and the cart is along the route on Borgo Ognissanti and Via Vigna Nuova, both before and after the Scoppio del Carro. Before the cart "explodes" a parade of armored guards, costumed musicians, and elegant nobility, attired in 15th century dress, march in front of the cart, escorting it to the Duomo. Teams of flag throwers entertain people lined up along Via Vigna Nuova and Via Strozzi. After the fireworks, the oxen take the cart back to its "garage" - a great time to see the flower-adorned animals and the fabulous designs on the carro.

P&F PICK APARTMENT RENTAL FOR APRIL – A Terrace with a View of All of the Domes
Did you ever want your own roof-top terrace in the center of Florence? The “Dome View Apartment” near San Lorenzo Church is the one for you. The furnishings are a combination of modern and traditional pieces. The living room and dining room have frescoed ceilings. The floors are wood in the living areas and terra cotto tile floor in the two bedrooms. There are double windows, and the bedrooms overlook sunny internal courtyards. This special apartment is equipped with air-conditioning, ADSL computer connection, TV, dishwasher, microwave oven, washing machine, kitchenware and linens. It’s on the third floor… and there is an elevator! For more information click this link.


The Bargello Museum is one of the best places to spend a Sring morning. With its inside/outside configuration you can happily arrive at 8:15am and leave when it closes at 1:50pm. This would be the perfect museum to take advantage of during the Cultural Week’s free openings (see below in “Best Deal”).

The Bargello palace was built to house first the Capitano del Popolo and later, in 1261, the 'podestà', the highest magistrate of the Florence City Council. This Palazzo del Podestà, as it was originally called, is the oldest public building in Florence. This austere crenellated building served as model for the construction of the Palazzo Vecchio. In 1574, the Medici dispensed with the function of the Podestà and housed the bargello, the police chief of Florence, in this building, hence its name. It was employed as a prison; executions took place in the Bargello's yard until they were abolished by Grand Duke Peter Leopold in 1780, but it remained the headquarters of the Florentine police until 1859. When Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor Peter Leopold was exiled, the makeshift Governor of Tuscany decided that the Bargello should no longer be a jail, and it then became a national museum.

The original two-story structure was built alongside the Volognana Tower in 1256. The third story, which can be identified by the smaller blocks used to construct it, was added after the fire of 1323. The building is designed around an open courtyard with an external staircase leading to the second floor. An open well is found in the center of the courtyard.

The Bargello opened as a national museum (Museo Nazionale del Bargello) in 1865, displaying the largest Italian collection of gothic and Renaissance sculptures (14–17th century).

The museum houses masterpieces by Michelangelo, such as his Bacchus, Pitti Tondo (Madonna and Child), Brutus and David-Apollo. Its collection includes Donatello's David and St. George Tabernacle, Vincenzo Gemito's Pescatore ("fisherboy"), Jacopo Sansovino's Bacco, Giambologna's L’Architettura and his Mercurio and many works from the Della Robbia family. Benvenuto Cellini is represented with his bronze bust of Cosimo I and the original base for his Perseo, as well as a miniature of the original statue.

The museum also has a fine collection of ceramics (maiolica), textile, tapestries, ivory, silver, armours and old coins. It also features the competing designs on Isaac's Sacrifice (Sacrificio di Isacco) that were performed by Lorenzo Ghiberti and Filippo Brunelleschi to win the contest for the second set of doors of the Florentine Baptistry (1401).

Address: Via del Proconsolo 4. Tel. 055 2388606

Open: Weekdays: from Tuesday to Saturday: 8.15 am - 1.50 pm; open on the first, third and fifth Monday of every month; the ticket office closes 40 minutes before the museum closing time.

Holidays: 8.15 am - 1.50 pm; open on the second and fourth Sunday of every month; the ticket office closes 40 minutes before the museum closing time.

Closed on: on the second and fourth Monday of every month; on the first, third and fifth Sunday of every month. December 25, January 1, May 1. -

Entrance: € 4,00.

BEST CAFÉ FOR APRIL – Café Libreria La Cite

Enjoy a nice hot tea or a glass of wine at this little café in the San Frediano neighbvorhood With books lining the walls and a cozy upstairs area to sit and use the Wi-Fi, this is the new hip place to be. Drinks are reasonably-priced (3 euros for a glass of wine). There is a limited food selection (sandwhiches, tortillas, and a variety of sweet cakes). This is one of the few places in Florence with this atmosphere and culture, and definitely one of the best.

There is a schedule of activities every week that includes a Jazz session on Mondays, Tango on Wednesdays and a handful of exotic theatrical performances and quartets with jazz, rock and fusion. La Cite during the day is a much more low key with people sitting on their computers. The evenings is when Borgo San Frediano livens up a bit with great music and ambience.

visit website: www.lacitelibreria.info

tel: +39 055 21 0387

Address: Borgo San Frediano, 20r

FORZA VIOLA!! FOR APRIL – Florentine Calcio

P&F Sports Reporters Simon Clark & Anne Brooks bring you March’s Florentine Calcio results and the upcoming schedule for April.

Forza Viola!.........This was to be the month Rossi and the squad led The Long March towards a top-six place (remember the pre-season aspiration?). Instead, we managed one win in five games, slumped to 16th place (within touching distance of the relegation zone) and got thrashed by Juventus – after which humiliation, rumours swirled that the manager had resigned. He hasn’t, but Director of Football Corvino is falling on his sword in slo-mo and will not have his contract renewed at the end of the season. And yet, and yet........

Fiorentina’s Results

Week 26: Fiorentina-Cesena WON 2-0

Week 23: Parma-Fiorentina DREW 2-2

Week 27: Catania-Fiorentina LOST 0-1

Week 28: Fiorentina-Juventus LOST 0-5

Week 29: Genoa-Fiorentina DREW 2-2

Primavera. Our Primavera side have faltered, maybe because so many of the team are being called into Serie A service. A couple of draws mean we lag Juventus but we are well clear of the rest. The youth team is second to Empoli with a game in hand. The regional boys league is a different world; this month we have thumped Poggibonsi and San Marino and humiliated Grossetto to stay top with a goal difference of +110!

Serie A. Time to grab hold of Cesena and shake them – or, at the least, win. We do but not in great style. Cesena are in relegation trouble and a haven for ageing and failing players. We make hard work of it and reach half-time all-square but it’s been all Viola and eventually they yield as their defence deflects a typically tricky Pasqual cross into their own net in a panic. The second goal was rich and from a defender; teenager Nastasic controlled, swivelled and shot like an experienced centre-forward. Better – but we need more!

We need to clean up in Parma just as the judges are cleaning Parmalat but Jovetic is injured and they have toughened up since we trounced them in Florence. They go ahead with a lucky rebound that looked offside but we take over in the second half. Nastasic happens to be first in a queue of Viola players waiting to nod in a Vargas free kick for his second Serie A goal, Parma being temporarily AWOL. Ten minutes more and Cerci turns in our second. We have cause to be grateful to Boruc’s goalkeeping but there is nothing he can do about the late penalty.

A blatant smash-and-grab by Catania. How did we not win this one? After 58 minutes, Vincent Montella (making a decent fist of starting his managerial career) must have been wondering what to do against a fluid Viola formation. Then – Wham! A very dubious penalty, although very well-taken. Boruc must have been wondering what was going on, watching his colleagues throw away chance after chance. Amauri still has not scored a goal; no-one is scoring goals-plural for us except Jovetic. A lot depends on the next two games. We could even contemplate going through three managers in a season!

The BIG one, the hated Juventus at the Stadio and the pre-match hype dissolves into disaster and despair. A goal down in 15 minutes is tough, then Cerci gets himself sent off for a petulant gesture. The game becomes damage-limitation – not a game we are well-equipped for. By half-time they are two-up; it’s three (this looked offside but the game is lost by now) early in the second half, four in 67 minutes, a fifth and then the merciful final whistle. We tried; we hit the post, but it’s hard when we only had the ball a quarter of the time (when Juve took a breather). The Juventus forwards had way too much speed, technique and class for our defence. Notable that, as the steamroller bore down on us continuously, our Mr did nothing; had he given up? Or was he already thinking about the next game?

BIGGER than the BIG one, to Genoa and the rats who deserted our ship. Jovetic is back in harness and we are superior; Rossi rightly declares that when we play like this we usually win. But we don’t and it’s our own fault. Our defence has gone slack; our attack has lost sight of the Viola principle – at any point in a game, we need to be two goals ahead because we are going to cede a soft late one. Genoa queue up for the opening header, then we take over and ten minutes later Montolivo’s second goal of the season equalises. Midway through the second half, Natali loops in a header and the points are in the bag. Except in the 89th minute, Palacio is ushered through our defence for a clinical strike and a point they never deserved.

Next Month. April is the cruellest month. (Yes, we have used it before but it’s one of T S Eliot’s best lines and you can’t have too much of a poetic thing). We worry about the fixtures. A home game against Chievo is manageable; then we have Milan (title contenders); Palermo (European contenders but disintegrating); the usual Roma; a stuttering Inter - but when will they get their mojo back? And away to Atalanta – just promoted and docked points but trashing all before them.............Forza Viola!


The month of April features:

Week 30: 01 Apr/home Fiorentina-Chievo

Week 31: 07 Apr/away Milan-Fiorentina

Week 32: 11 Apr/home Fiorentina-Palermo

Week 33: 15 Apr/away Roma-Fiorentina

Week 34: 22 Apr/home Fiorentina-Inter

Week 35: 29 Apr/away Atalanta-Fiorentina


Ticket information - seating plan, prices, and ticket outlets - is on the "biglietteria" section of the club's website [www.it.violachannel.tv ]. Tickets can be purchased at official box offices and holders of TicketOne lottery franchises. Sources include:

CHIOSCO DEGLI SPORTIVI, via degli Anselmi 1. Tel 055 292363.

BAR MARISA, viale Manfredo Fanti 41. Tel 055 572723.
BAR STADIO, viale Manfredo Fanti 3r. Tel 055 576169.
ACF OFFICIAL TICKET-OFFICE, via Dupre 28 (corner of via Settesanti).
NUOVO BOX OFFICE, Via delle Vecchie Carceri, 1, (inside the Murate). Tel 055 264321
FELTRINELLI FIRENZE, Via de' Cerretani 39/32R

BEST BOOK FOR APRIL – Dante In Love by A.N. Wilson

For William Butler Yeats, Dante Alighieri was “the chief imagination of Christendom.” For T. S. Eliot, he was of supreme importance, both as poet and philosopher. Coleridge championed his introduction to an English readership. Tennyson based his poem “Ulysses” on lines from the Inferno. Byron chastised an “Ungrateful Florence” for exiling Dante. The Divine Comedy resonates across five hundred years of our literary canon.

In Dante in Love, A. N. Wilson presents a glittering study of an artist and his world, arguing that without an understanding of medieval Florence, it is impossible to grasp the meaning of Dante’s great poem. He explains how the Italian states were at that time locked into violent feuds, mirrored in the ferocious competition between the Holy Roman Empire and the Papacy. He shows how Dante’s preoccupations with classical mythology, numerology, and the great Christian philosophers inform every line of the Comedy.

Dante in Love also explores the enigma of the man who never wrote about the mother of his children, yet immortalized the mysterious Beatrice whom he barely knew. With a biographer’s eye for detail and a novelist’s comprehension of the creative process, A. N. Wilson paints a masterful portrait of Dante Alighieri and unlocks one of the seminal works of literature for a new generation of readers.

BEST BOOK FOR KIDS FOR APRILLittle Bo in Italy: The Continued Adventures of Bonnie Boadicea by Julie Andrews Edwards

Bo the cat and her human, Billy, who are working as crew aboard an English lord’s yacht, travel across the Mediterranean to visit Pisa and Rome. Along the way, they are reunited with long-lost feline relatives, take part in a circus act, become embroiled in a Colosseum cat fight, and interact with some suspicious-looking fellows at the British embassy. The simple, progressive plot includes manageable conflict, and frequent dialogue interspersed with Italian and French phrases, and the full-color artwork extends the book’s feel as an old-fashioned classic.

Julie Andrews Edwards is that Julie Andrews, one of the most recognized figures in the world of entertainment. She is perhaps best known for her performances in Mary Poppins, The Sound of Music, and The Princess Diaries. Ms. Edwards is the author of many favorite children's books, including Mandy, The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles, and the Little Bo series. Grades 1-3.

BEST EXHIBIT FOR APRIL – Americans in Florence: Sargent and the American Impressionists

Until July 15, 2012, at the Palazzo Strozzi, century-old ties between Florence and the United States is celebrated in a fantastic new exhibition.

In 2012, exactly 500 years since the death of Amerigo Vespucci, Florence will be marking this event with an exhibition designed to celebrate the strong ties linking the Old World and the New, and the cosmopolitan ambiance that bound the city to the New World for ever, transmitting European culture and sophistication to America. The exhibition explores the American impressionists' relationship with Italy, and with Florence in particular, in the decades spanning the close of the 19th and dawn of the 20th centuries.

There was a marked upswing in the number of American artists travelling to Europe after the Civil War ended in 1865, and the trend continued on into the early 20th century. Hundreds of painters came to Paris and other parts of France while others studied in Germany, with England, Holland and Spain being other favorite locations. Italy, however, was an inescapable pole of attraction for most of them. Florence, Venice and Rome had been at the heart of the Grand tour for centuries and had become legendary for all those eager to study the art of the past, quite apart from their appeal in terms of the climate, the countryside, the people, and the overall atmosphere prevailing in them.

This exhibition hosts the work of American painters who embraced the artistic vocabulary of Impressionism and spent time in Italy. It contains works by painters who, while not explicitly subscribing to the new style, were nevertheless crucial masters for the younger generations: men such as Winslow Homer, William Morris Hunt, John La Farge and Thomas Eakins. These are followed by the great forerunners, artists such as John Singer Sargent, Mary Cassatt and James Abbott McNeill Whistler, who could boast of strong cosmopolitan leanings.

The main part of the exhibition comprises works by artists of remarkable quality who spent time in Florence and who deserve to be better known. Their number includes members of the American impressionist group known as the Ten American Painters: William Merrit Chase, John Henry Twachman and Frederick Childe Hassam. Franck Duveneck also played an important role in fostering relations between American and local artists by putting together the “Duveneck boys“, a group that included his wife Elisabeth Boott and the painter Joseph Rodefer De Camp.

The Americans in Florence lived their lives and pursued their activities in close contact with their scholar, collector, writer and art critic compatriots in the city, with some of whom they had previously had dealings in America: Gertrude Stein, Mabel Dodge, Bernard Berenson, the brothers Henry and William James, Egisto Fabbri and his family (his sisters Ernestine, a painter, and Cora, a poet) Mabel Hooper La Farge, Bancel La Farge, Charles Loeser and Edith Wharton. Though tending not to mix with the local population, these American colonies in Italy learnt the lesson of the most up-to-date Italian painting of the day – in Florence it is worth highlighting the importance of the Macchiaioli – and had a certain impact on Italian artists and thinkers, introducing sophisticated and cosmopolitan lifestyles and adopting a more relaxed attitude towards women.

The exhibition includes female portraits of great quality in which women symbolize the modern American nation: young girls, adolescents and even children, often dressed in white, personify the purity and hopes of an entire nation. The female portrait theme provides a link with the activity of American women painters, who were far more emancipated than their French and European counterparts. The more enterprising among them came to Europe and contributed to the cultural osmosis between their country and the Old World, a shining example of this trend being Mary Cassatt. Painting for women was considered little more than a pastime in Europe, but women painters in America were allowed to frequent the academies on an equal footing with their male counterparts.

Curated by Francesca Bardazzi and Carlo Sisi.

Info: Ph. + 39 055 2645155 Website: www.palazzostrozzi.org/Sezione.jsp?idSezione=683


Angela Caputi established the company "Giuggiù" in 1975 in Florence. From the very beginning she has worked and created costume jewelry in her prestigious workshop in the San Frediano neighborhood. Her production and designs are precise and very distinctive.

Angela adores to mix various materials, creating always particular combinations of colors and textures. Angela works with all sorts of mediums like plastic and resin (reminiscent of vintage Bakelite). Her pieces are so distinct — they have a wonderful vintage feel, with bow broaches with crystal detailing, or the clip earrings that are her signature. The outcome is colored, original jewelry know the world over.

Angela Caputi is today one of the most recognized names in the field of high fashion costume jewelry carrying the "Made in Italy" label.

Stores in Florence:

Via S. Spirito, 58/R
Tel +39 055 212 972

Borgo SS. Apostoli, 44/46
Tel +39 055 292 993

BEST DEAL FOR APRIL – Cultural Heritage Week

From April 14 to 22, Italy celebrates its cultural patrimony by opening all state-run museums admission-free. The list of these museums in Florence happily includes: the Uffizi; the Pitti Palace museums (Palatine, Silver and Porcelain museums, and the Costume Gallery); the Accademia; Bargello, Archaeological Museum; the Medici Chapels; San Marco Museum; and the Semi-Precious Stone Inlay Museum (Opificio delle Pietre Dure).

If you are planning to get into the Uffizi or the Accademia during this week, you should make a reservation by calling 055 294883. You will pay 4 euro for each "free" ticket, but you will not have to wait in a 4-hour line.


A fascinating world comes to life in Giardino dei Semplici (Florence’s Botanical Garden).

The Natural History Museum of Florence will showcase the fascinating world of dinosaurs. Until September 2, through an informative, educational and fun exhibition, Dinosaurs in the Flesh and Bones will bring the public one of the most fascinating of aspects of science that will be a kind of laboratory in 'continuous evolution.'

"Dinosaurs in the Flesh" is a cultural event entirely Made in Italy and expresses Italian excellence in the Sciences and Paleontology, which has traditionally been predominant among the Anglo-Saxon cultures.

At the Giardino dei Semplici and between the palaeontological collections of the Natural History Museum visitors can admire life-size prehistoric animals, created by internationally recognized Italian artists of the field. A recreated dinosaur habitat emerges with copies of the Tyrannosaurus and Spinosauri, and using the fossil skeletal remains of the museum, other dinosaurs will be on display, among them the Glyptodon and Thylacinus.

The exhibition features 40 hyper-realistic reconstructions on a 1:1 scale of dinosaurs and other prehistoric animals, some of them colossal in size. Also, as part of the exhibition, there are 9 murals with prehistoric animals and paleoenvironmental reconstructions; 110 illustrated information panels; 120 works by internationally renowned Italian illustrators of paleontology art; and the exhibition of fossils, molds and tools needed to build the reproduction of a dinosaur, and a 3D paleontology aquarium

In conjunction with the exhibition are an array of cultural events, such as guided tours, informational lectures, and conferences with special initiatives.

Florence Museum of Natural History

March 1 to September 2



two adults and up to two children aged 4-18


children aged 11-18; senior (over 65)


children aged 4-10; students

children under 4; disabled people and their accompanists;

3 teachers/accompanists per class.

The entrance fee is cumulative for access to the exhibition, the Geology and Paleontology Section and the Botanic Garden Section.

Geology and Paleontology Section , Via G. La Pira, 4

BOTANICAL GARDEN Section on P.A. Micheli, 3




The NYU campus at La Pietra, located on the edge of Florence, is famous for its conferences and lectures on a number of topics. This time, on April 18, they have teamed up with the Palazzo Strozzi Foundation to present a fascinating lecture on a topic most timely, zero kilometers from the center of Florence.

This talk will examine the love affair that Americans and foreigners in general have had with Tuscan cuisine over the past 100 years or so. The main body of the talk will then examine, through foreign eyes, the current trend of growing your own vegetables and its wider impact on the Tuscan environment. Nick Dakin-Elleiot manages the gardens and grounds of Villa La Pietra, which is currently undergoing restoration.

Sala Altana, Palazzo Strozzi

April 18 at 6:00pm

Rsvp lapietra.reply@nyu.edu or 055 5007 202


The International Handicrafts Trade Fair is a big event organized by Firenze Fiera from April 21 to 29 at the Fortezza da Basso, Florence, Italy. An event which hosted the most important master craftsmen of history inside the evocative space of the fort, where tradition and innovation merge to create extremely valuable handmade products.

This is an annual event (since 1931) where you can admire the works of the ancient Florence workshops, as well as remote arts which are being rediscovered through the fair itineraries, following a harmonious path among the Italian regions and the countries of the whole world.

This year the International Handicraft Fair will be hosting Cittaslow, a movement born in 1999 by an idea of Paolo Saturnini. The purpose of Cittaslow International is to spread a new lifestyle, applying the philosophy of Slow Food to towns development and everyday life. In this way everyone will be able to regain the ownership of their time, enjoying the slow and natural succession of the seasons, living an healthy life, surrounded and enriched by the traditions of handicraft. Cittaslow International will be hosted in the Polveriera building

This year the Fair will host also “Baci 2012”, a Balloon Art show full of colors and whimsy. The show is set to begin on Friday, April 20 and ends on Tuesday 24, the main themes will be arts and crafts. A very interesting and entertaining event, for both children and parents, featuring characters from history: gladiators, poets, astronauts and even Leonardo and Albert Einstein.

The International Handicrafts Trade Fair is open every day from 10am to 11pm (on the 29th April, the last day: closing time at 8pm).


The Museo Casa Rudolfo Siviero is hosting a special exhibit, entitled “When I Recover a Beautiful Work…”, until April 25, of religious crosses, bells, and other liturgical items from its collection. The exhibition presents Siviero's work in recovering artworks stolen from Italian churches and at the same time his interest in collecting this type of works. It links the two sides of Siviero's activity by showing how the recovering of a stolen work often stimulated him to buy a similar object in the antiquarian market.

The museum is located at the ground floor of the fine Neo-Renaissance building on the banks of the river Arno, where Rodolfo Siviero lived from 1944 until his death in 1983.

A keen collector and refined intellectual, Siviero managed to collect many works of Ancient art among which Etruscan findings; Ancient Roman busts; 14th and 15th century wooden statues; Medieval paintings on gold backgrounds, Renaissance and Baroque pictures, bronzes, terra-cottas, liturgical objects, beautiful furniture. Furthermore, a group of works of important Italian modern artists such as Giorgio De Chirico, Giacomo Manzù, Ardengo Soffici, Pietro Annigoni, who were friends of Siviero.

This patrimony perfectly reflects the personality of its owner who loved art so deeply and it has the same kind of charm you can find in the palaces full of magnificent art collections Florence inherited from Bardini, Horne and Stibbert. The House-museum is a document of the taste and way of life of the educated XX century Florentine middle-class and it gives the possibility of visiting the private treasures of a "James Bond" of art.

The museum also hosts exhibitions and other cultural events, the actualization of which is entrusted by Regione Toscana to the Associazione Amici dei Musei Fiorentini.

Lungarno Serristori, 1-3

Open: Saturday 10am – 6pm, Sunday and Monday, 10am – 1pm

Entry free of charge


On Sun. 15, pop around to Piazza Santo Spirito and admire the crafts and organic food fair. This one, as the name suggests will focus on crafts for the home. Your will also find handmade ceramic whistles for kids, antiques, food, hand-woven dresses and linens, beeswax candles, naturally scented soaps and oils, home-baked bread and cakes, ceramics, wine, olive oil, hand-carved wooden salad bowls and more. www.lafierucola.org


Le Stanze dei Tesori, the initiative links “The Small Great Museums” of Florence – eight museums for ten euro: Museo Stefano Bardini, Museo Stibbert, Museo Horne, Fondazione Salvatore Romano, Museo di Palazzo Davanzati, Museo Casa Rodolfo Siviero, and Museo Bandini. Each museum has its special collection, many of them the personal collections of antiques collectors from the 19th century, the treasures they decided to keep instead of selling or auctioning around the world. These collections now are part of small, separate museums such as the Horne, Bardini and Stibbert – all named after the collectors themselves.

Ongoing until April 15, the museums are showing off their collections with a special focus on the Florentine artistic craftsmanship and the golden era of when private antiques collectors in Florence were very active.

The exhibit at Palazzo Medici Riccardi presents a general summary of the era, while the Stibbert Museum offers an international exhibit of Florentine “maiolica” created by Ginori and Cantagalli. The Bardini Museum reopens its Hall of Paintings, with the original setup Bardini used to display the works, at the center of which is the newly restored 13th century crucifix by Bernardo Daddi. The Horne Museum offers a collection of designs from Raphael to Constable, while the Palazzo Davanzati exhibits photographs by Elia Volpi that document the original furnishings of the house before they were sold in a large auction in New York during the Great War.

A very special way to see many treasures in Florence, particularly since a special “Treasure Pass” has been created at just € 10 to allow you to visit all of the museums — a really good deal, since it also includes free entrance to the Fondazione Salvatore Romano, Bandini museum, Casa Rodolfo Siviero museum,  the Ceramic Museum in Montelupo and the Museo della Manifattura Galileo Chini and discounts on entry to Palazzo Vecchio, the Brancacci Chapel, the Santa Maria Novella museum and the Richard Ginori of Doccia Works Museum.

See the
website: http://www.stanzedeitesori.it for more information


ALBERT NOBBS (Uk/Ir 2011 - 113') By Rodrigo Garcia. With Glen Close and Mia Wasikowska

Sun 1 >> 16.00 - 18.15 - 20.30 - 22.40

Mon 2 >> 17.30 - 20.30 - 22.40

Albert Nobbs is a woman passing as a man in order to work and survive in 19th century Ireland. Some thirty years after donning men's clothing, she finds herself trapped in a prison of her own making. ‘As directed with grit and grace by Rodrigo García, this quietly devastating film goes bone-deep’ (Rolling Stone). 3 Oscar Nominations.

HIT THE ROAD, NONNA (Italy 2011 - 64') By Duccio Chiarini.

Mon 2 >> 16.00

Tue 3>> 16.00

Wed 4 >> 16.00

Delia Ubaldi is the daughter of poor Italian emigrants to France and one of the most successful businesswomen in the European fashion world. Her talent has brought her enormous wealth, despite her difficult character and controversial methods. At almost ninety Delia recalls her life with her grandson, director Duccio Chiarini.

FAR FROM HEAVEN (France, USA 2002 - 107') By Todd Haynes. With Julianne Moore

Tue 3 >> 20.30

Todd Haynes’s beautiful 2002 homage to the celebrated American melodramas of Douglas Sirk revisits Connecticut in the 1950s but in the new permissive climate of contemporary cinema introduces elements of sexuality and race which were not possible in Sirk’s day.

FEAR AND LOATHING IN LAS VEGAS (USA 1998 - 118') By Terry Gilliam. With Johnny Depp and Benicio Del Toro

Tue 10 >> 20.30

Terry Gilliam’s adaptation of Hunter S Thompson’s psychedelic road trip in search of the American Dream is a cult classic. Crazy journalist Raoul Duke and his psychopathic Samoan lawyer Dr Gonzo lose it completely in Las Vegas in 1971 awash with alcohol and drugs and generalized depravity.

THE BEST EXOTIC MARIGOLD HOTEL (UK 2012 - 118') By John Madden. With Judy Dench, Maggie Smith

Tue 17 >> 15.30 - 18.00 - 22.45

Wed 18 >> 15.30 - 18.00 - 20.30 - 22.45

Thu 19 >> 15.30 - 18.00

Seven British pensioners decide to retire to India and take up residence in what they believe is a newly restored hotel. Much less luxurious than advertised, the Marigold Hotel nevertheless slowly begins to work its charms in unexpected ways.

EDWARD SCISSORHANDS (USA 1990 - 101’) By Tim Burton. With Johnny Depp and Winona Ryder

Tue 17 >> 20.30

In this modern fairy tale, Edward is a gentle, naive creation with razor sharp scissors for hands. When he is taken in by a kindly Avon lady to live with her family, his adventure in the pastel paradise of Suburbia begins! Tim Burton’s winning and heart-warming story is a perennial delight. ‘An ambitious and quite beautifully conceived fairy tale for the 90s’ (Empire).

THE WORLD ACCORDING TO MONSANTO (France 2009 – 108') By Marie Monique Robin

Thu 19 >> 20.30

Monsanto is the world’s main producer of genetically modified foods and one of the most controversial businesses operating today. Since its founding in 1901 it has been accused of negligence, fraud, and causing ecological disaster. Robin’s documentary is an all-out attack on the company and its methods.

TO ROME WITH LOVE (USA 2012 - ) By Woody Allen. With Woody Allen, Jesse Eisenberg, Ellen Page, Alec Baldwin, Penélope Cruz, Judy Davis, Riccardo Scamarcio, Isabella Ferrari, Sergio Rubini, Alessandro Tiberi, Alessandra Mastronardi and Roberto Benigni

Fri 20 >> 16.00 - 18.00 - 20.30 - 22.30

Sat 21 >> 16.00 - 18.00 - 20.30 - 22.30

Sun 22 >> 16.00 - 18.00 - 20.30 - 22.30

Thu 26 >> 15.30

Fri 27 >> 16.00 - 18.00 - 20.30 - 22.30

Sat 28 >> 16.00 - 18.00 - 20.30 - 22.30

Sun 29 >> 16.00 - 18.00 - 20.30 - 22.30

Woody Allen’s latest European setting is Rome. Loosely based on stories by Boccaccio, the film is divided into four parts and features a range of Italians and Americans lost and found in the Eternal City. Allen himself returns in an acting role. Also known as The Bop Decameron and Nero Fiddled.

ORIGINAL LANGUAGE FILMS – Talking Movies at the British Institute

The Talking Movies Series at the British Institute Library. Every Wednesday at 8:00 pm, the Sala Ferragamo in the Institute's Harold Acton Library hosts a film, followed by discussion. The British Institute Library, Lungarno Guicciardini 9. Check the web site at www.britishinstitute.it/en/events/default.asp for times, dates, and detailed information or stop by the library for a brochure.

LECTURE SERIES – British Institute of Florence

Every Wednesday at 6:00 pm, the Sala Ferragamo in the Institute's Harold Acton Library hosts a free lecture, concert or other event, followed by an informal reception. The British Institute Library, Lungarno Guicciardini 9. Check the web site at www.britishinstitute.it/en/events/default.asp for times, dates, and detailed information or stop by the library for a brochure.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012, 18.00 Lecture: James Bradburne

James Bradburne, director of the Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi, explains the background to the current exhibition 'Americans in Florence: Sargent and the American impressionists', curated by Francesca Bardazzi and Carlo Sisi, which can be seen at the Palazzo Strozzi until 15 July. (See description of the Palazzo Strozzi exhibit, above.)

TROPOS – Swimming, Pilates, and Weight Training

Looking for a gym or swimming pool during your stay in Florence? Tropos is a private swimming pool, gym and city spa, exclusive and refined.

Tropos has served Florence for over 35 years with professionalism and customer care. It is situated near the historic center and it’s very simple to reach. There’s a parking lot, but it’s also easy to reach by foot, bike or bus.

All of the staff at Tropos are able to offer their clients all the recent innovations from the world of wellness: new technologies, new practices, new methods, and new experiences. Tropos, with its customized programs and the complete range of services and products for the wellness permits you to regain the perfect psycho-physical balance. It also offers children an equipped world of sporting facilities and games, animation and courses.

Tropos welcomes tourists and other visitors with a range of special offers and personalized areas.

Monday/ Friday:  7:30 – 22:00  Saturday: 7: 30 – 20:00  Sunday: 9:00 – 13:00

Via Orcagna, 20/AContatti: tel. 055678381 055679746

email:desk@troposclub.it ; website www.troposfirenze.it



Concert – Direttore Zubin Mehta with Orchestra and Chorus of the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino

Teatro Comunale on 5 April 2012, at 20.30 and 6 April, at 16.30

Richard Wagner
Preludio e Incantesimo del Venerdì Santo da Parsifal

Igor Stravinskij
Sinfonia di Salmi per coro e orchestra

Anton Bruckner
Sinfonia n. 4 in mi bemolle maggiore Romantica

See the calendar on the Maggio’s website: http://www.maggiofiorentino.com/?q=node/1852


The Amici della Musica of Florence present various concerts at the Teatro della Pergola.  Works by Haydn, Schumann, Bartok, Mozart and Beethoven are only a small sample of what will be performed.   See the schedule for concerts at http://www.amicimusica.fi.it/ .

Amici della Musica - Concert Season

Teatro della Pergola

1, 2 April

info: 055/609012 – 055 607440 - 055 2264333


FIREFLY AT THE TEATRO VERDI – Dance as You’ve Never Experienced it Before

On Friday, April 20 at 8:45 pm at the Teatro Verdi on Via Verdi be charmed and amazed by "FireFly" by the eVolution Dance Company. The performance is an illusionary and magical infusion, able to excite and fascinate young and old; it’s, a rare, engaging and dreamlike performance matching wonder with art, leaving in the process an indelible mark on the minds and hearts of the audience.

eVolution, an exciting dance theater created by ex-Momix dancer Anthony Heinl. A dream-like series of fantastic vignettes, "FireFly" generates unique visions of beauty and humor with a cast of dancer/acrobats and innovative technical effects. Heinl has developed a unique theatrical sensibility, incorporating the human element with illusion in a rare combination.

The use of technical innovation and video fuse with strong acrobatic, physical theater, and dance, creating a magical world making the impossible possible in unexpected and inventive ways. A variety of curious creatures not bound by conventional physical laws hurtle through space and melt in and out of each other.

Website: www.teatroverdionline.it/cartellone

Not to worry! … here are a bunch of events or exhibits that will still be happening in April:

ROBERTO CAPUCCI – Colors: My Great Karma

Take a springtime walk through the Bardini Garden an d at the top of the hill go to the Villa Bardini and on the top floor you will arrive at the wonderland that is the Roberto Capucci Foundation Museum. The new exhibition is called Colors: My Great Karma – the philosophy of this unique designer, who invites the audience on a journey into his world of colors. On display are 28 dresses in 3 colors emblematic of his production: green, red and purple.

Among the dresses is Bougainvillea, a famous dress-sculpture presented for the first time in 1989 at the Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna in Rome, a masterpiece in pleated taffeta green circular elements in shades of green and cyclamen that recreates gracefully sculptural glamour with the color and charm of the plant that inspired it.

Enter the Bardini Garden at Via dei Bardi, 1/r or the Villa Bardini at Costa San Giorgio, 2.

8:15am to 6:30pm


Palazzo Pitti: Museo degli Argenti & Galleria Palatina & Galleria d’Arte Moderna from April 3 to – July 1, 2012

‘Japan, Land of Spells’ (Giappone. Terra di Incanti) is a series of three distinct exhibitions using three of the Pitti Palace galleries, all celebrating the art, history and culture of Japan and its peoples.

The Museo degli Argenti displays a wide ranging collection of Japanese art dating from the mid-16th to the mid-19th century. Ceramics, paintings, calligraphy, sculpture, lacquer work, metal work and fabrics, all dedicated to the elegance of line and richness of color.

The Galleria Palatina includes an exhibition dedicated to the finest Japanese art of the 20th century in an exhibition under the title ‘The Elegance of Memory’. All works were exhibited in one of the annual domestic exhibitions dedicated to the best of traditional Japanese art, organized since 1954 by the National Museum of Modern Art in Tokyo and by the National Museum of Modern Art in Kyoto.

The third exhibition takes place in the Galleria d’Arte Moderna and has as a theme the relationships and influences between Italian and Japanese art.



The Tuscan Archipelago National Park this year is celebrating its fourth edition of the Tuscany Walking Festival. “Taking advantage of all the benefits mother nature has to offer means living a better life.”

This year the Festival starts off with two opening ceremonies, one on April 6th in Rio nell’Elba on the eastern side of the island, and the other on April 7th in Marciana, on the western side, with a very full programme indeed: beautiful walks, both during the day and at night, breathtaking views, some routes along the mineral archeology with the island of Montecristo in the background, or stone goat shelters and granite roads with the island of Pianosa in the corner of your eye, other routes that are perfumed and colorful, laboratories for children, schools for the preparation of medicinal herbs, and much, much more.

The philosophy of the festival: regaining the benefits of mother nature. Photography, painting and contemporary art lovers, and hobby lovers in general, will be given special treatment. During the festival a Convention will be held on the subject of the environment and the happiness it can give, with many innovative ideas and suggestions on how to live better. The Park has also published new brochures: as well as the guide to the most characteristic excursions in the Park, translated into three foreign languages, there is a brochure about the fascinating history of the Tuna fishing nets in Enfola, and a small guide for excursions on horseback, and by bike.

The festival will take place from April 6th to May 6th, and then during the autumn from September 29th to November 1st. All activities will be held not only on the Islands of Elba, Giglio and Capraia, but also Giannutri and Pianosa, in an attempt to attract those who prefer to go on holiday offseason, and who will thus have the chance to follow the paths, in the company of expert guides, completely free of charge.

Website: http://www.tuscanywalkingfestival.it/en-GB/home.html

MERCATINO DI APRILANTE – Artisanal Crafts Market

Sun. 1 (morning to afternoon) visit Panzano-in-Chianti. The first Sunday of each month the weekly town market held in Panzano is expanded with artisan booths of all sorts. Depending on which vendors show up, you'll find honey and pecorino (sheep's milk) cheese makers, hand-embroidered linen makers, boutique wineries and antique dealers and much more. To visit Panzano by car from Florence or Siena, take Route 222, the "Chiantigiana" highway passing through the Chianti wine area. From the west, there is a road connecting with the highway at Tavarnelle or S. Donato. This pretty road passes the monastery of Badia a Passignano. It is also possible to reach Panzano by SITA bus from Florence. The trip takes about one hour.

TEXTILE MUSEUM IN PRATO – Fabric is Everything

“Fabric is Everything” (Il tessuto è tutto) is likely the most important cultural event dedicated to contemporary textiles ever organized in Italy. The title, a quotation from the great master of style Yohji Yamamoto, is a declaration of love for fabric, the raw material and key element of quality and beauty in any fashion product. The exhibit runs until September 2012.

This belief has led the Prato Textile Museum (Museo del Tesuto) to develop this tribute to the excellence of its manufacturing district, proposing the latest results in research and innovative technology, creativity and style within the museum space.

Over 200 fabrics are displayed in a playful and dreamy exhibition in the former industrial area of the Cimatoria Campolmi, which has been transformed for the occasion into a kind of modern "wonder room" that immerses visitors in an all-encompassing world of materials and colors.

In fourteen macro installations developed especially for this exhibit, the variety and rich creativity of the fabrics is enhanced through their installation, taking on the form and importance of works of contemporary art.

Opened in 1975 in Tullio Buzzi Technical Institute, Prato Textile Museum commenced its cultural mission by providing a collection of items testifying the history of local textile production since the beginning of the 12th century for use in the training of new technicians in the textile design sector.

Prato Textile Museum is now a flourishing center for the promotion of the local industrial district, a district which comprises around 8,000 companies and employs over 40,000 people. Since May 2003 Prato Textile Museum has been definitively housed in the converted Campolmi textile mill, a symbol of the local textile manufacturing industry located in the centre of the city of Prato.

Prato Textile Museum

Via Santa Chiara 24

Phone: +39 0574 611503

Fax +39 0574 444585

Opening hours:

Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday: 10am-3pm

Saturday: 10am - 7pm

Sunday: 3 - 7pm free entrance

Closed on tuesday

Last entrance 40 minutes before closure time


On Sun. 1, as on every first Sunday of the month, from 8 am to sunset, you can enjoy a visit to Fiesole with the added fun of perusing the stands filled with bric-brac and antiques. Piazza Mino. For info phone 0555978373.


From April 14 to 22, Italy celebrates its cultural patrimony by opening all state-run museums admission-free. So all of the major museums in Siana, Prato, Pistoia, and Arezzo are included in the offer. Take your family on the raod to see those museums you’ve missed by just concentrating on the Florence Big Two with thousands of others.


The news is spreading among the “Down Under” community in Florence. There is the new E-zine that can be downloaded as a .pub file. Entiled Australians and New Zealanders in Florence (ANZIF), its aim is the keep the members informed about new and upcoming events. It will also provide information that may be important for ANZIF visitors and residents. Members are encouraged to contribute content to the E-newsletter by contacting Deidre Pirro at australians.florence@gmail.com. Use the same email address to sign up for the newsletter. The first issue has valuable information about Anzac Day celebrations, scheduled for May 2, a potluck dinner scheduled for April 19, and an introduction, if any is needed, to Victor Caufield, who is leading the charge on Anzac Day.


Invitation to Newsletter Readers & Friends:

The Pitcher & Flaccomio Newsletter would like to invite readers and friends of readers to submit announcements of upcoming events that may be of interest to visitors and residents of Florence and Tuscany, provide shopping tips, and/or comments on what’s “right or “wrong” in Florence (or the Newsletter). We can’t promise to put every announcement in the newsletter, but we appreciate your support, interest and messages.

Please send an email to info@pitcherflaccomio.com or newsletter@pitcherflaccomio.com


A proverb says "Spring has come when you can put your foot on three daisies.” This April we wish that you will climb through hills of purple irises and skip through fields of red poppies. Spring has finally arrived in Tuscany!

All the best,

Pitcher and Flaccomio