A MESSAGE FROM FITC
Florence International Theatre Company would like to announce
the official opening of Florence Art Crawl which brings an
opportunity to experience the city in a way never before offered.
Through various forms of art - photography, theatre, music,
and more - our guests will join us in a creative experience
while we 'crawl' through the streets and alleyways of one
of the lesser-known parts of the city: Oltrarno.
Florence Art Crawl #1 is the Nighttime Photographic Art Crawl
of Oltrarno, a full evening (Monday through Saturday, 7 pm
to 10.30/11pm) which begins with a five-course dinner at a
very 'local' eatery in San Frediano. Following dinner, with
the Art Crawl Host, you will create images of this neighborhood
at night that can be put on the website and have the possibility
to be a part of an annual publication.
Florence Art Crawl is a terrific way to support the work of
Florence International Theatre Company while having a fun
night out! And, although the site is in English, with advanced
notice a crawl can be conducted in Italian, French, Spanish
A Note From the Producing Artistic Director - I am pleased
to announce this new project which has been in development
for the last two years. The idea of the Art Crawl came to
me originally as a counter to the Pub Crawls which outraged
many Florentine residents when they came to their attention
in the newspapers, and which add to the drinking culture of
the city at night. I, and all of us at FITC, strongly believe
that the arts should be more engaged and active during the
evenings with all populations of the city center, including
tourists. In this way a balance to the heavy drinking culture
in centro will be created which involves the local and international
visitors and residents while giving something positive to
the city and supporting local artists and arts organizations.
We ask for your help in launching this project which will
be a way of giving your support to FITC by spreading the word
to your friends, family and colleagues both here in Italy
and abroad, by contacting us with any ideas you have for developing
relationships with tourist operators and conference planners,
etc. and by considering a Florence Art Crawl as a unique occasion
for your future plans of celebration or work-related events.
For info: www.florenceartcrawl.com.
Thank you, (and Suzanne, thank you EVER so much for being
such a supporter of FITC and our new project for guests of
Producing Artistic Director, Florence International Theatre
Company. Tel. 055 213 788, or 334 835 7826, www.florencetheatre.com
MESSAGE FROM DEMOCRATS ABROAD FLORENCE
June 10, Wednesday, 6:15 pm - LECTURE: Erik Jones, "Implications
for Europe of the Obama Victory". Villa La Pietra/NYU.
Via Bolognese 120 (bus #25). RSVP required. Write firstname.lastname@example.org.
Admission free, refreshments follow. Erik Jones is a professor
of International Relations at the prestigious Johns Hopkins
School of International Studies in Bologna (known as SAIS).
Erik was our first speaker in 2005 and we are very happy to
invite him back. He will present his just-published book The
2008 U.S. Presidential Elections: A Story in Four Acts and
is gearing his lecture to an audience of Americans living
in Europe. (www.jhubc.it/facultypages/ejones).
June 16, Tuesday, 7:30 pm - CHAPTER MEETING. Caffe degli Artigiani,
Via dello Sprone 16/red (at corner with via Toscanella: cross
Ponte Vecchio to Oltrarno, turn right onto Borgo S. Jacopo,
then left onto via Toscanella 5 min walk from bridge).
You pay only for what you want to eat/drink. The focus of
this chapter meeting will be Advocating From Abroad. Well
talk about the Americans Abroad Caucus, healthcare advocacy,
and more. All in a lovely section of the Oltrarno on a street
where artisans still flourish. Please write Cathleen if you
have a special topic youd like us to consider.
June 18, Thursday, 6:30 pm - FILM: Crude Impact. Brac - Café/bookstore,
Via dei Vagellai 18/red (off via dei Benci near Arno). You
pay only for what you want to eat/drink. 1 euro donation to
DAF. Our film series continues! Crude Impact by Jay Wood chronicles
the collision of our insatiable appetite for oil with the
rights and livelihoods of indigenous cultures, other species
and the planet itself. Thanks to DAF member Pam Coleman for
suggesting and obtaining this film.
June 25, Thursday, 6:15 pm. LECTURE: Alan Kuperman, Wishful
Thinking Will Not Stop Genocide: How to Improve Humanitarian
Intervention". Syracuse University, Piazza Savonarola
15. Free snacks, cash wine bar. 1 euro donation to DAF. Alan
Kuperman taught at SAIS in Bologna and now teaches at the
LBJ School of the University of Texas as a professor of Public
Affairs. He was also Legislative Director for Congressman
Charles Schumer of New York and has a longstanding interest
in human rights violations and humanitarian intervention.
Looking Forward to July: DAF is working with the American
Consulate of Florence and the Tuscan-American Association
to help plan this years Fourth of July picnic at Villa
Demidoff. Our responsibility is to make sure the party feels
authentically American. Well be organizing games like
three-legged races, egg-on-a-spoon runs, and much more in
order to involve people of all ages in the fun! Were
also organizing a mini version of the USA Street Fair to showcase
some of the services available to the English-speaking community
in Florence. We need volunteers on July 4th! Please write
There will be NO chapter meeting in July or August. We will
resume our chapter meetings on Saturday, September 19, from
11am-12:30pm at Cal State (via Leopardi 12). How You Can Help:
Would you like to volunteer at any of the lectures or films
youve seen above? Just write us and well find
a way to put you to work!
Cathleen Compton, Chair, email@example.com. www.democratsabroad.org
FOOTBAAAALLL!! by Simon Clark and Anne Brooks
Forza Viola!..........The final month of the season. Five
games remaining and qualification for the Champions League
beckons. We hold fourth place just ahead of Genoa. But never
mind the Genovese. All we have to do is overcome our own demons.
Playing as we did against Roma, we can destroy anyone but,
sometimes, the most challenging opponents are our own doubts
and nerves. Breathe deeply
Week 34: Fiorentina-Torino WON 1-0
Week 35: Catania-Fiorentina WON 2-0
Week 36: Fiorentina-Sampdoria WON 1-0
Week 37: Lecce-Fiorentina DREW 1-1
Week 38: Fiorentina-Milan LOST 0-2
Serie A. Coming off the back of our destruction of Roma, we
cant expect a repeat; we just need to keep things under
control and avoid a slip-up against relegation-battling Torino
the Viola did what was necessary, largely keeping the opposition
quiet and getting in a deal of shooting practice. We could,
however, have eased spectators nerves by converting
more than one of the chances. The goal itself was a gem
Vargas running onto a long ball from Kuzmanovich, sliding
it under the advancing goalkeeper and rounding him to pop
it into the empty net. That was the Peruvians second
goal in successive matches; he is transformed from the somewhat
hesitant defender of the opening games. Mind you, Torino did
have a stoppage-time score ruled out incorrectly
for offside. Who cares? The referee decides, not the cameraman
or studio-bound commentators.
Week 35 and we take a trip to Sicily and Catania. Easy-peasy!
The Sicilians are already safe and have little or nothing
left to play for. The Viola did most of the attacking and
latterly had their goal under constant siege. A Gilardino
assist for a Jovetic strike from the corner of the penalty
area calmed everyones nerves in the 11th minute and
from then on the three points belonged to us, Zauri pouncing
on a defensive error to bang in a second right on the final
whistle. At the same time, Genoa are stuttering they
manage only a draw at Atalanta.
Back to the Stadio for the visit of Sampdoria and the return
of Giampaolo Pazzini. The young striker had garnered fine
reports since leaving Fiorentina and has been called up to
the full national squad. Maybe its something about the
Stadio Franchi but Pazzini delivered for Sampdoria pretty
much what he used to deliver for Fiorentina plenty
of effort, fine positional play and no goals! Samp could shelter
behind the excuse of being weary after losing the midweek
Italian Cup final to Lazio on penalties but they didnt
greatly worry us. Gilardino played the role of chief executioner
on this occasion, nipping in front of his marker and turning
in a high-velocity cross from Vargas (a man who only plays
at top speed). The result means that only Genoa (held to a
draw again) can catch us and that one more point just
a single point will confirm us in that all-important
fourth place. Indeed, Florence is dreaming about finishing
third or even second to avoid the Champions League qualifying
rounds and go straight to the group stage. Our destiny is,
as they say, in our own hands or, rather, in Sebastien
Freys hands and everyone elses heads and feet!
Week 37 and the penultimate game of the season. On the face
of it, this should pose no problems a Top Four team
plays the side at the foot of the league. Lecce, however,
still have a mathematical chance of Serie A survival and they
are one of only two teams this season to have beaten us at
the Stadio. This is not going to be easy
.and our inner
doubts began to show, fans certainty to unravel. While
Genoa are engaged in a titanic struggle at Torino, a struggle
from which they eventually emerge victorious, we go 1-0 down
in the 50th minute as our entire defense goes AWOL for a moment
or two. We try hard, we try too hard. Were too tense
and the machine is overheating, unsurprising in the 35 degree
temperature. But help is at hand. If nothing else is working,
look to a player holding out for an improved contract. Prandelli
brings on Jorgensen. In the 89th minute, the Dane burrows
into the Lecce penalty area, gets a fortunate rebound from
a defender and buries the ball in their net. One-one. A draw.
One point. We are in the Champions League and the fans go
Well, we were looking for a two-goal margin with Milan, and
that's what we got....but the wrong way round! The Viola gave
it a good shot but Milan came to play it safe. Very experienced,
very organized, very patient and ready to smother Gilardino
whenever the ball came his way, their composure edged our
enthusiasm - though the score line was a little harsh. We
sparkled through a goalless first half. if we had taken just
one of those three clear chances, who knows what might have
happened? Montolivo was running the show, the defense looked
solid - but a Flamini drive smacking against the bar came
as a warning. The danger was always that as we pushed forward
we left ourselves vulnerable at the back. And so it proved.
In the second half, Kaka punished us. We surged upfield and
Pato plundered another. Game over. Given that it was one of
the few last-day games with anything at stake, it was notable
for being played in a sportsmanlike manner throughout and
for the high quality of the refereeing. So there we are, another
fine season, entry to the Champions League and a strong sense
of the Viola project continuing to build momentum.
What happens now? The players can take a bit of a break but
attention focuses on the next campaign, on who we will be
playing in the Champions League and on what moves will take
place in the forthcoming transfer window. Director of Football,
Pantaleo Corvino has pledged that no-one will be leaving.
Why would they when we can offer the highest available level
of football next season and a crack at the Scudetto? Presumably
only for the sake of money but Real Madrid and Arsenal are
said to be sniffing around Felipe Melo, for example. Frey,
Montolivo and others appear committed and we will keep our
fingers crossed. So who will be coming in? The word was that
Crespo, out of favor at Inter and out of contract at the end
of the season, had tipped us the wink but then it transpired
that Genoa had made a better offer. Corvino and Prandelli
continue the search and we will try and keep you abreast of
rumors and reality
THE FIORENTINA SCHEDULE: The season being over, there are
no games scheduled. A new round of friendlies will come along
in late July as the preface to the 2009-2010 Scudetto campaign.
However, we will kick off next season properly with the Champions
League qualifiers. The initial draw will take place in Switzerland
later this month but we don't come in for a while. We reckon
the Viola will be playing someone over two legs 18-19 and
25/26 August. Let's pray for the champions of Iceland - anywhere
unaccustomed to Tuscany's August temperatures!
RECIPE OF THE MONTH
Macedonia Estiva - Summer Fruit Salad.
1 ripe pineapple
1 baby watermelon
6-8 ripe nectarines
1 basket blueberries
1 basket raspberries
1 cup sugar
½ bottle sparkling wine-prosecco, spumante
Fruit sorbet of your choice
Cut pineapple, nectarines and watermelon into small (half
inch) pieces and place in a large bowl. Add sugar and macerate
at least an hour and up to half a day. Just before serving
add the berries, and the half bottle sparkling wine and toss
with the mint leaves. Serve with a scoop of fruit sorbet.
My favorites are lemon and raspberry. Serves 12.
This month our recipe comes from Sahna Wicks of A Tuscan Welcome
catering and cooking school (firstname.lastname@example.org).
EASY LIVING BEACH
Surfs up in sunny Florence! All summer long check out the
beach scene Arno-style just below Piazza Poggi. Get a snack
at the bar kiosk, and wander down to catch some rays on a
sandy, new beach. Open from 10:00 am til late night. Lungarno
Serrestori. Tel. 335 6630341. Check their site for activities
and upcoming events. www.piazzart.com
GIARDINO DELLE ROSE (the Rose Garden)
Until June 16th, climb up the hillside below Piazzale Michelangelo
to the Giardino delle Rose for one of the loveliest views
in Florence. The garden was developed in the late 1800s,
when architect Giuseppe Poggi was designing numerous public
spaces to celebrate Florence as the new capital of Italy.
The terraced garden site was chosen specifically for its drop-dead
wonderful vistas of Palazzo Vecchio, the Duomo, Arno and the
entire historical centre. There are over 1000 varieties of
roses, plus other flowering plants. Access the garden by strolling
up from the San Niccolò neighborhood through the medieval
San Miniato gate. At the base of a long staircase called Via
San Salvatore al Monte, you can enter the garden at the lower
gate directly on your left, or two hundreds yards up, halfway
to the Piazzale Michelangelo. Other gates are accessible from
the zigzagging Viale Giuseppe Poggi which connects Piazzale
Michelangelo and Piazza Poggi at the Arno. Open until June
16 (and maybe longer). Viale Giuseppe Poggi 2, tel. 055 262
5305. Open seven days a week from 8 am 8 pm. Free entry.
POLIMODA FASHION WEEK
From Thurs. 4 to Thurs. 11 a new collaboration between Polimoda
International Institute for Fashion Design & Marketing
and the most prestigious boutiques, historical venues and
exhibition spaces in Florence will light up the city with
a series of fashion installations, exhibitions, conferences
It is indeed an original and innovative project
explains Polimoda Dean Linda Loppa aimed at connecting
the great names of the fashion system and young generations.
Fashion Week opens on June 4th in Palazzo Spini Feroni, with
the conference The XX Centurys Archives of Fashion.
There will be 20 renowned window displays of Polimoda Fashion
Design students creations, organized as a path across
the city centre, from Via dei Tornabuoni to Piazza della Repubblica,
from Via Por Santa Maria to Piazza Antinori, from Piazza del
Duomo to Via Roma.
The event Polimoda New Talent will take place
on June 5th, 6th, 10th and 11th, from 3 to 7 pm, at the historical
Giubbe Rosse Café where young fashion designers, graphic
designers, entrepreneurs, journalists, photographers and web
designers will have the opportunity to present their personal,
creative ideas to Dean Loppa, and see them published on the
new Polimoda website.
An exhibition The Sculpture of Fashion will take
place at the Marino Marini Museum where 19 students of the
patternmaking course will interpret todays fashion designers,
bringing together art and the research of new volumes in sync
with the human body. On June 10th Villa Bardini will host
a conference The Garden of Fashion, while the
Florence National Library will be the ideal background for
an exhibition of the fashion design students garments.
Thanks to collaboration with the most exclusive Florentine
night clubs, Polimoda Fashion Nights on the evenings
of June 4th and 8th will be animated by events and free-access
parties around town. Finally, on June 8th, Saschall Theatre
will host Fashion Show 2009, where 70 Polimoda
Fashion Design students will present their final works: a
double appointment, at 4 and 9 pm, when the creativity, research
and talent of these future designers will hit the runway.
To see the full calendar of appointments of Polimoda Fashion
On Sat. 13, Sun. 14 and Wed. 24, Piazza Santa Croce will host
the traditional, rough-and-tumble Calcio Storico tournament.
For those unfamiliar with the game, just imagine a seemingly
disorganized mix of football, soccer, rugby and something
you werent supposed to play as kids. Throw 52 of Florences
toughest guys out onto a hot playing field and watch them
have at it. This, at least, is what it appears. In reality,
guys from the four neighborhoods of town, train carefully
throughout the year to best represent their teams on the field.
This season the teams will join forces and play friendlies.
With much pageantry beforehand, and the color and life of
the game and crowd, it should be fun for all. Games start
at 5 pm. Tickets can be organized through the Box Office,
via Alamanni 39/R, tel. 055/21.08.04.
FIRENZE FASHION 2009
From Mon. 15 to Sat. 20 a series of events will be held by
the non-profit restArte Foundation to raise money toward the
restoration of the Ammannati Courtyard in the Pitti Palace.
Invitations to many of the following events may be booked
through the foundation website www.restarte.org.
On Tuesday 16 at 10:00: Palazzo Pitti Treasure Chest
exhibitions and screenings of Florence's cultural heritage
and works of art stored in Palazzo Pitti. Images of frescoes,
architectural drawings, paintings, jewellery, accessories,
furnishings, utensils, crystals, porcelain and statues will
be projected on screens inside the courtyard. Music will accompany
the images. At 8:30 pm: The Art of Wool - an event dedicated
to fashion and to the merchants that sponsored many works
of art, including the imposing Duomo of Florence. A film will
be shown documenting the lives of Brunelleschi, Leonardo da
Vinci, Michelangelo and Ammannati: the architect who dedicated
himself to the courtyard which he gave his name to.
On Wednesday 17 there will be special tours of the Medici
corridor. Besides visiting the prestigious Vasari corridor
and its works of art, visitors can admire the artistic beauty
of Palazzo Pitti and the Uffizi. Art history experts will
accompany four groups of visitors on the tour.
Saturday 20 June is a day aimed at public involvement. A Palazzo
Pitti tournament will have teams representing the various
areas of Tuscany competing in traditional games and competitions
(6:00 pm) including flag throwers, musicians and drummers.
Later in the evening there will be competitions in knife throwing,
crossbow, archery, jousting, stone races, sack racing and
falconry, and a reproduction of Florence's old market, complete
with artisans and merchants. Jugglers, fire-eaters, jesters
and acrobats will provide entertainment. The day finishes
with a banquet and a concert by Paolo Vallesi and Rossini.
PITTI IMMAGINE UOMO
From Tues. 16 to Fri. 19 Florence is the place to be, as she
opens her doors once again to the beautiful people
of the mens fashion world. Undercover will be the special
guest at this the 76th edition of Pitti Immagine Uomo. On
the evening of Wednesday 17, Japanese designer Jun Takahashi
- the mind behind the Undercover brand - will present the
world premiere of his menswear Collection S/S 2010 in the
exceptional location of the Giardino di Boboli of Palazzo
Pitti. One of the biggest names on the international stage,
Undercover is known for his look that starts from an authentic
Japanese street fashion and develops into an evocative presentation
centered on emotions. There will be many special projects
and previews at the Fortezza this month: from Brooks Brothers
debut showing, to the return of Allegris three collections
including the main line by Francesco Scognamiglio, to the
first total look and new styling by beachwear brand Vilebrequin,
plus, the return of big names such as Lardini and Malo in
this preview of mens fashion for the Spring/summer 2010
The exhibitions are reserved to dedicated fashion buyers.
In order to get an entrance card it is necessary to show your
official invitation at the Reception desk. If you do not have
an invite you can fill out a registration form and show an
official document certifying your business activity. Fortezza
da Basso and other locales. Tues. 16 to Fri. 19. Open from
9 am- 8 pm. www-pittimmagine.com.
NOTTURNA DI SAN GIOVANNI 4 & 10K RUNS
On Sat. 20 Florences 70th annual nighttime 10 kilometer
run will start and end in the beautiful Piazza San Giovanni
at the Duomo. Race into the Florentine night, past the citys
major monuments. Gather at 7:00 and take off soon after on
either a competitive 10k run or a non-competitive 4k Family
Run. Participants receive a T-shirt commemorating the event.
Admission: 10K - 8 euro; 4K - 5 euro. Registration and payment
must be sent in by June 19 to the Società di San Giovanni
Battista, via del Corso 1, open 10.00 12.00 and 4:00
pm to 7:00 pm from Monday to Friday. Tel. 055/294174. e-mail:
Sun. 21 in Piazza Santo Spirito take advantage of this extra
fair to enjoy all the goodies for one last time til September
(since the usual Fierucolina remains on hold during the months
of July and August). Browse Piazza Santo Spirito and pick
up all kinds of natural and organic products, from fresh cheeses,
to jams, clothing, and handmade items of all sorts. Open 9
am - 7 pm.
FLORENCE FESTS PATRON SAINT JOHN THE BAPTIST
To celebrate St. Johns day, Wed. June 24 is a local
holiday in Florence (only). Banks and such will be closed.
To make up for it, the city puts on a spectacular display
of fireworks. Find a spot that gives you a good view toward
Piazzale Michelangelo before the 10:00 pm starting time, and
enjoy the show. Other events during the day include a morning
(9:00 am start) stroll of costumed figures through the historical
center, a river race on the Arno (afternoon), and the Calcio
Storico Big Game in Piazza Santa Croce (5:00 pm).
From Thurs. 25 to Sat. 27, kids will have a fashion showcase
of their own at Pitti Bimbo, the world preview of childrens
clothing, accessory and design collections for the 2010 spring/summer
season. With more than 400 firms vying for display space,
Pitti Bimbo is growing and becoming ever more international.
The new entries at this edition include Les Petites Marie,
Loppa, Olive and Moss, Chi ama Chi, Moschino Junior and Murphy&Nye
confirming the event's weight in the world of junior fashions.
Same ticketing plan as for Pitti Uomo above. Thurs. 25 to
Sat. 27. Fortezza da Basso and other venues around town. Open
from 9 am- 8 pm. www-pittimmagine.com.
'NOTTARNO Notte Bianca (White Night in the Oltrarno)
On Sat. 27 why not wander down to the Oltrarno neighborhood
of Florence. It is going to be ALIVE all night long (or nearly).
From 9:00 pm to 3:00 am, the streets and squares will be filled
with fun as restaurants, bars and shops keep doors wide open
to host special events, shows, and tastings. Radiating out
from Piazza Santo Spirito, youll find action from San
Niccolo to San Frediano to Piazza Tasso and back. Florence
Dance will perform in Piazza Pitti, there will be live music
in Piazza Santo Spirito, and comedians in Piazza del Carmine.
EXHIBITS AROUND FLORENCE
ROBERT MAPPLETHORPE, PERFECTION IN FORM
Until Sept. 27, an exhibition dedicated to the great American
photographer Robert Mapplethorpe, in the twentieth anniversary
of his death, will illuminate the Accademia Gallery. For the
first time works of this renowned artist of photography will
be exhibited with universal icons of art like the David, flanked
by the Prisoners, and paintings by masters from the fourteenth
century to the full Renaissance.
From its very title, Robert Mapplethorpe, Perfection in Form,
the show expresses the profound principle that associates
Mapplethorpe with the great Renaissance masters and, in particular,
with Michelangelo: the search for balance, the precision and
clarity inherent to Form that tends toward perfection
by means of the geometric rigor of volumes defined by line
and sculpted by light. In Mapplethorpes own words: I
look for perfection in form
I am trying to capture
what could be sculpture. The photographer confessed
his fascination for the art of Michelangelo, stating: If
I had been born one hundred or two hundred years ago, I might
have been a sculptor, but photography is a very quick way
to see, to make sculpture.
The material is grouped into four sections addressing the
single theme of Form; Geometry of Form, Fragment as Form,
Repeating Form, and Sculptural Form. Michelangelos David
and the four Prisoners, as terms of comparison, in addition
to four drawings and a wax model also by Michelangelo, reflect
off 93 works by Mapplethorpe that include human subjects as
well as numerous still-lifes, where Mapplethorpe confirms
his attention for the study of light and shadows on the object,
giving it a clear placement in space.
Accademia Gallery. Via Ricasoli 58. Open Tues-Sun 8:15 am-6:50
pm; last admission 30 min. before closing. Ticket: 10 euro.
Closed Monday. Firenze Musei Tel. 055. 2654321
SPLENDOUR AND REASON, ART IN 18TH CENTURY FLORENCE
Until Sept. 30 the Uffizi Gallery hosts a fascinating special
exhibit. With the extinction of the Medici dynasty (1743),
Florence did not lose its prestige as capital of culture and
the arts, thanks to the government of the Lorraines, who gave
the city the international profile required by Enlightenment
policies. This exhibition is the first overall panorama of
the principal artistic events of the eighteenth century in
Florence, with 120 paintings, sculptures, art objects and
furnishings, works from the entire century, recording the
changes in taste from the late Baroque period to Neoclassicism.
The show starts with commissions made by Cosimo III and the
Grand Prince Ferdinando de Medici, that opened the city
to foreign artists like Sebastiano Ricci and Giuseppe
Maria Crespi. They favored sculpture (with personalities like
Giovan Battista Foggini and Massimiliano Soldani Benzi), and
developed the manufacture of tapestries and semiprecious stone
Following the Medicis, Peter Leopold of Lorraine brought the
European version of Rococo and Neoclassicism to Tuscany, along
with the reformist spirit that accompanied the theories of
the Enlightenment even in the figurative arts. A new elite
of patrons took shape in Florence. In this context, the families
of the Florentine aristocracy held a conspicuous role: the
Gerinis for the diffusion of the veduta (landscape), the Ginoris
for their famed porcelains of Doccia, the Corsinis for their
constant relations with pontifical Rome. In this climate of
civic and cultural fervor, the Frenchmen François-Xavier
Fabre, Bénigne Gagnereaux, Louis Gauffier and Jean-Baptiste
Desmarais came to Florence, driven from Pontifical Rome after
the murder of the diplomat Nicolas de Basseville. With them
came the international version of neoclassicism, thus contributing
to the reform of the portrait, the veduta and
the historical painting, on the eve of the instatement of
the Napoleonic court (1799). Uffizi Gallery. Ticket: 10 euro.
Open Tuesday to Sunday 8,15 18,50. Closed Monday. Firenze
Musei Tel. 055. 2654321
THE LIVING MARBLES, GIAN LORENZO BERNINI AND THE BAROQUE PORTRAIT
Until July 12 the Bargello National Museum pays tribute to
Gian Lorenzo Bernini and his exceptional qualities as a portraitist.
With the bust of Costanza Bonarelli, the Bargello possesses
the most exciting and famous testimony of the breakthrough
that Bernini (1598-1680) brought to the genre of portrait
sculpture. The show sheds light on the most significant phase
of the artists activity, represented by Costanza Bonarelli,
the Portraits of Urban VIII and of Scipione Borghese, and
of other personages of the papal court. It concentrates on
the portraits that Bernini sculpted from his early youth and
is divided into two sections: Bernini the Portraitist: the
Beginning and Rise, and The Talking Portraits
Portrait sculpture had an extraordinary diffusion in Rome
in the first half of the seventeenth century, with much innovation
occurring in little more than twenty years, between 1615 and
1640. Thanks to Bernini, it progressed from stern and stiffly
formal images to figures which seem to breathe and even converse
with the viewer. They are the so-called talking portraits.
Bargello National Museum. Until July 12. Ticket: 7.00 euro.
Open Tuesday to Sun 8:15 6:00 pm.
GALILEO. IMAGES OF THE UNIVERSE FROM ANTIQUITY TO THE TELESCOPE
Until August 30, at Palazzo Strozzi, Florence pays homage
to the human and intellectual epic of one of its most ingenious
sons. Galileos first celestial discoveries date to exactly
400 years ago, and to mark this fourth centenary the United
Nations has declared 2009 the International Year of Astronomy.
The exhibition proposes a journey through time and space that
begins with the mystical and poetic visions of ancient Egypt
and Mesopotamia. It moves on to the Greek cosmogonies, characterized
by the ingenious homocentric spheres of Eudoxus, through the
planetary architectures of Ptolemy and Arab astronomy, revoking
the Christian interpretations and finally arriving at the
heliocentric theories of Copernicus that inspired Galileo
and Kepler, the scholars who together with Newton
made a decisive contribution to the definitive consolidation
of the new concept of the universe.
Enhanced by informative videos, the itinerary is illustrated
by archaeological finds, beautifully-fashioned scientific
instruments, celestial atlases, paintings (spectacular frescoes
from Pompeii never shown before, in addition to Botticelli,
Rubens and Guercino), sculptures, precious illuminated codices
and specially-built working cosmological models. Among the
most spectacular exhibits are the monumental astronomical
tapestry of Toledo, the Farnese Atlas, the mysterious painting
Linder Gallery Interior, displayed here for the first time,
and Galileos telescope.
Palazzo Strozzi, Piazza Strozzi. Until August 30. Open daily
9:00 am 8:00 pm, Thursday until 11:00 pm. Tickets:
€ 10.00. Tel. 055 2645155. For bookings: tel. 055 2469600.
PIETRO BENVENUTI AT THE COURT OF NAPOLEON AND OF THE LORRAINES
Until June 21, the Palatine and Modern Art Galleries of the
Pitti Palace host Pietro Benvenuti (Arezzo, 1769 Florence,
1844). Benvenuti was the leading protagonist of Tuscan art
in the years that marked the passage from neoclassicism to
romanticism. He studied at the Fine Arts Academy of Florence
and completed his training in Rome where he painted his first
important studio trials: the Judith for the Cathedral of Arezzo
and the Martyrdom of the Blessed Signoretto Alliata for the
Cathedral of Pisa.
Elisa Baciocchi (whose brother Napoleon Bonaparte received
the principality of Lucca and Piombino, and then the government
of the entire Tuscany) appointed Benvenuti court painter,
and in 1807 she summoned him to direct the Academy of Florence,
an office he maintained until his death. The Napoleonic parenthesis
was the period of several monumental compositions (The Death
of Priam, The Oath of the Saxons, Elisa and the Artists),
which precluded to the great decorative undertakings planned
to modernize the Pitti Palace, the Room of Hercules in particular
(in the wing today occupied by the Palatine Gallery), terminated
during the Restoration.
Benvenuti was also an extraordinary portraitist. In Tuscany,
he represents the style that prevailed in the middle-European
ambit, both in bringing the character of the personages into
focus, and in the setting. His classicist vocation is fully
expressed in the composition of mythological themes, which
the painter prepared with exquisite drawings that often assume
the value of autonomous works. Leopold II of Lorraine commissioned
him to complete the decorations in the dome of the Chapel
of the Princes in the Church of San Lorenzo.
So the exhibition illustrates Benvenutis artistic history,
presents his most important works, and compares them with
those of his early teachers, and those by Italian and foreign
artists (from Giani to Sabatelli to Thorvaldsen), encountered
in Rome in the eccentric and experimental Accademia dei Pensieri
(Academy of Thought). The Sala Bianca of the Gallery of Modern
Art presents the paintings of the Napoleonic years (mainly
portraits and mythological themes). The set up revolves around
the large painting of Pyrrhus, presented to the public for
the first time after a long and complex restoration that has
revealed its stylistic components drawn from the study of
David and Canova.
The exhibition itinerary also includes the Room of Hercules
and ends with a section dedicated to the paintings of the
years of the Restoration, genre paintings for the most part
of a historical-literary matrix with inflections of a troubadour
flavor. The particular interest of these works emerges from
the comparison with several paintings with an explicit romantic
adhesion by contemporaries Luigi Sabatelli and Giuseppe Bezzuoli.
They are the proof that the classicist maestro Benvenuti at
least in part shared the instances of truthfulness advanced
by the next generation of the moderns, especially
the Macchiaioli. Palatine Gallery and the Modern Art Gallery,
Piazza Pitti 1. Hours: 8:15 to 6:50 pm. Closed Monday. www.polomuseale.firenze.it.
Info: 055 294883.
MEMORIES OF ANTIQUITY IN TWENTIETH-CENTURY ART
Until July 12, the Pitti Palace Silver Museum hosts a show
featuring the art of antiquity reflected in twentieth-century
and present-day art. Paintings and sculptures that have passed
through the centuries (from the Etruscans to the Classical
Age, from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance), are proposed
in comparison with Picasso and Dali, Modigliani and De Chirico,
Soffici, Marino Marini, Vangi, Mitoraj, Theimer, Guadagnucci
and Franco Angeli.
The more than 130 works on show include a series of significant
parallels of the applied arts: between the glass manufactures
by Ercole Barovier and Carlo Scarpa and extraordinary pieces
from the National Archaeological Museum of Naples, between
ceramics by Giò Ponti and those from the National Archaeological
Museums of Florence and Rome, between twentieth-century jewels
and several wonders from antiquity and the Medici collections
in the Pitti Palace.
The exhibition visually represents the innovative force and
great expressiveness of twentieth-century art, juxtaposed
with an historical Neoclassicism. Already present in Picassos
works from the early XX century (the exhibition presents the
Repas Frugal from the Victoria and Albert Museum of London),
the return to origin became a creative drive also for a generation
of Italian artists. After the disruptive experiences of the
turn of the century, Carrà, Severini, Soffici, De Chirico,
Morandi, and Modigliani chose this road to reconnect with
roots and traditions. Even foreign artists were influenced
by the allure of our past: in the Birth of Liquid Desires
dated 1931-32, and on loan from the Guggenheim Museum of Venice,
Salvador Dalì presents a surreal atmosphere, and literally
cites the famous Cornelian with Apollo, Marsias and Olympus,
which once belonged to Lorenzo the Magnificent. Silver Museum.
Palazzo Pitti. Piazza Pitti 1. Hours: 8:15 to 5.30 pm. Closed
Monday. www.polomuseale.firenze.it. Info: 055 294883.
CARLO MOLLINO PHOTOGRAPHER
Until June 14, the Alinari National Museum of Photography
hosts works by Carlo Mollino, Italian architect and designer
whose skill as a photographer was only rediscovered some years
after his death in 1973. Mollino held photography in high
esteem, it was a great passion and favorite means of expression.
He was a photographer who advocated retouching, as documented
in his treatise The Message from the Dark Room. Mollino often
painted on his photos or negatives. Alinari National Museum
of Photography. Piazza Santa Maria Novella. Open from 10:00
am to 7:00 pm. Closed Wednesday. Entry: euro 6. www.alinarifondazione.it.
ANNIGONI AT VILLA BARDINI
This ongoing show at the newly restored Villa Bardini, features
Pietro Annigoni, who died in 1988, leaving a legacy that we
can now begin to explore in depth. A selected portion of the
6000 works of art recently donated by the artists family
will be on show, changing annually to enable his public to
eventually view the entire collection. Painting in a Renaissance
style, Annigonis portraits graced the cover of Time
magazine five times during his life. Visit the museum today,
to enjoy an introduction to the artists works, as this
year we will be shown paintings (and lithographs, designs
and memorabilia) dating to the beginning of his career. Villa
Bardini, Costa San Giorgio 2 and Via dei Bardi 1r. Museum
hours: October 1 through March 31: 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Wednesday through Sunday. From April 1 through September 30:
10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. Tel. 055-2638599.
Theatre info: Teatro Comunale , Via Solferino 15. Tel. 055
27791. Teatro della Pergola, Via della Pergola 12/32, Tel.
055 2479651. Teatro Verdi, Via Ghibellina 99, tel. 055 212320.
Teatro Saschall , Lungarno Moro 3, tel. 055 6504112. Teatro
Goldoni, Via Santa Maria 15. Tel. 055 229651. Teatro Romano,
Fiesole, Tel. 055/59187. Mandela Forum, Viale Paoli 3, tel.
055 678841. Stazione Leopolda. Viale Fratelli Rosselli 5.
St. Marks Church. Via Maggio 16. Tel. 055 294764. Church
of Orsanmichele, Via dei Calzaiuoli. Tel. 055-210305. Teatro
Puccini, via delle Cascine 41, tel. 055 362067. Chiesa S.
Stefano al Ponte Vecchio, piazza S. Stefano 5. Teatro Politeama
Pratese, Via G. Garibaldi, 33 Prato. Tel: 0574/603758,
www.politeamapratese.com. Purchase tickets for theatre, concerts
and other events at the following ticket agencies: BOX OFFICE:
Via Alamanni, 39 (alongside the train station). Open Monday
15,30-19,30, from Tuesday to Saturday 10,00-19,30. Tel: 055/210804.
Fax: 055/213112, INTERNATIONAL STUDIO, Chiasso de Soldanieri,
Tel. 055/293393, ARGONAUTA VIAGGI, Lungarno Torrigiani 33/B,
055/2342777.9187. Many tickets can be pre-purchased via www.ticketone.it
or www.boxol.it or www.classictic.com/en or www.festivalopera.it.
ORGAN CONCERT. Chiesa S. Maria de' Ricci, Via del Corso. Daily
at 9:15 pm; Saturdays at 6:00 pm.
MICHELE MARIOTTI - Appointed as Principal Director of the
Bologna Teatro Comunale just over a year ago, thirty-year-old
Michele Mariotti is one of the most promising Italian conductors
of the younger generation. For his debut at the Teatro del
Maggio hes chosen an all-Schubert programme ranging
from the sacred repertoire, with the famous Deutsche Messe
for chorus, wind ensemble and organ, to the symphonic, performing
the Zauberharfe (Magic Harp) overture - the same one as for
the incidental music to Rosamunde - alongside the Third Symphony
in D Major. Teatro Comunale. 8:30 pm.
HELMUTH RILLING - 200 years after the death of Haydn on 31st
May 1809, the German conductor Helmuth Rilling, one of the
most famous specialists in Baroque and late eighteenth-century
repertoire, conducts the Maggio Orchestra and Choir in one
of the Austrian composers greatest oratorios and masterpieces
- Die Schöpfung - The Creation - ten years after the
last, memorable performance by Wolfgang Sawallisch. Teatro
Comunale. 8:30 pm.
ROBERTO CACCIAPAGLIA TRIO - Roberto Cacciapaglias new
trio presents his latest work Canone degli Spazi (Universal
Classic), performed live for the first time. The album came
out on 23 January last, and contains 12 hitherto unpublished
compositions that contribute to enriching the artistic research
into the power of sound that the Milanese composer and pianist
has been pursuing for many years. Compared with the original
orchestration for the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, this performance
features solo instruments with Roberto Cacciapaglia, piano,
Silvia Longauerova, cello and Gianpiero Dionigi, keyboard
and electronics, giving preference to an essential, direct,
intimate and deep sound and to making and transmitting music
with an intensity and concentration that go beyond the written
score. "When Im at the piano, composing,
explains Cacciapaglia, before I touch the keyboard and
start to play, I remain still. I start from silence and from
the silence, the sound appears. The sense of the new
album Canone degli Spazi is sound that crosses all boundaries,
as summarized in the words of the composer himself, who states:
Sound can help us discover that the space within ourselves
has no limits, just like the space outside us, and that there
is really no difference between them. Sound passes through
walls, even the walls of our mind, and crosses space and time".
Piccolo Teatro (Comunale). 9:15 pm.
CLAUDIO ABBADO ORCHESTRA MOZART - The long-awaited
return of Claudio Abbado four years after his last, triumphant
appearance at the Teatro della Pergola, marks the opening
of the festival of youth orchestras at the Maggio Festival,
with the great conductor directing the Mozart Orchestra. This
orchestra was set up by Carlo Maria Badini as a special project
for the Accademia Filarmonica of Bologna and he has been in
charge of it ever since the first concert, held on 4 November
2004. The highly attractive programme offers Schuberts
Tragic symphony alongside Mozarts penultimate symphony,
the G Minor. Teatro Comunale. 8:00 pm.
AIDA - by Giuseppe Verdi, Opera in four acts. Libretto by
Antonio Ghislanzoni. Set and costumes design by Igor Mitoraj.
Aida was commissioned to Verdi by the Egyptian Kediveh in
order to celebrate the opening of the Suez Canal. It is the
opera of political disenchantment: the great scenic and choreographic
impact refers to melodrama heritage, but the opera reveals
his hopeless melancholy and lost illusions. Tickets: 25 to
75 euro. Boboli Garden. 9:15 pm.
FIREFLY - Another first dance performance at the 72nd Maggio
is Firefly, a new work created by Anthony Heinl, former Momix
dancer and for many years assistant choreographer to Moses
Pendleton, for MaggioDanza, the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino
Dance Company, directed by Vladimir Derevianko. Teatro Comunale.
FIREFLY (See Tues. 16)
FIREFLY (See Tues. 16)
ALESSANDRO QUARTA DIMITRI NAÏDITCH - The instrument
that best embodies the essence of classical music is the violin.
Its very construction harks back to a centuries-old tradition,
with workmanship and materials that have remained unchanged
and have been secretly handed down by generations of makers
of stringed instruments. When we think of the violin we immediately
think of the great symphonic repertoire, of chamber music
and of the hundreds of virtuoso performers who over the centuries
have excited audiences in all of the worlds concert
halls with their mastery. And lets not forget the diabolical
notoriety of the violin, which has supplied material for the
imagination of writers and musicians for at least two centuries.
Thats all we have to say at the moment. But theres
an unexpected and hitherto unexplored side to it a
dark side, possibly, but certainly a highly fascinating one.
Alessandro Quarta takes the bold step of entering an other
world to tell us everything we have never been brave enough
to imagine it was possible to hear from a violin. Piccolo
Teatro (Comunale). 9:15 pm.
CLAUDIO BAGLIONI - in Florence with his new show "Gran
Concerto: Storia musicale di un amore che non dura tutta la
vita ma la cambia per sempre". The show will take place
in the outdoor theater of the Boboli Gardens. Tickets: 34
to 69 euro. 9:15 pm.
CLAUDIO BAGLIONI (See Mon. 22).
MICHAEL NYMAN - Michael Nyman is one of the most versatile
and popular composers of his generation: he writes for opera
groups, the cinema, and dance and theatre companies. The Piano
Sings is his latest CD for solo piano as well as being the
first production for the MN Records label, which Nyman himself
heads. The album is a collection of well-known pieces reworked
in versions for solo piano, never before published, taken
from the soundtracks created by the composer over the last
ten years and starting with the Oscar-winning Piano Lessons.
On his solo tour Nyman performs pieces from the album, which
includes, as well as Piano Lessons, the soundtracks for The
End of the Affair, the Diary of Anne Frank, Gattaca and Wonderland.
For this performance, Michael Nyman has chosen to draw his
inspiration from several documentaries to present his music:
first of all a film made by the composer himself, shot in
Londons Brick Lane area; then there are two 1920s silent
films describing daily life in two very different cities,
Paul Strand and Charles Sheelers New York in the elegant,
vibrant documentary Manhattan, and Nice, as portrayed in the
surrealist comedy A Propos de Nice by Jean Vigo. Images of
these two films will provide the background for the composers
very evocative music. Teatro Comunale. 8:30 pm.
AIDA by Giuseppe Verdi. (See Monday 15).
BRUNO BARTOLETTI SAMUEL RAMEY - Here we have Bruno
Bartoletti, one of the conductors who has made history at
the Maggio and who was also recently awarded honorary citizenship
of Florence, and the American baritone Samuel Ramey, one of
the great voices of our times and a protagonist of the Rossini
Renaissance, in a programme that brings together three Italian
composers - Boito, Pizzetti and Petrassi each of whom,
in their respective eras, attempted to renew the language
of music. The literary works from which the pieces performed
are derived are also particularly interesting: the Prologue
in Heaven from Goethes Faust, the music for DAnnunzios
La Pisanella and finally, the Coro di Morti from the text
by Leopardi. Teatro Comunale. 8:30 pm.
GIANANDREA NOSEDA OGI - The Maggio festival of youth
orchestras continues with the appearance of the OGI, the Orchestra
Giovanile Italiana, which came into being in 1980 from the
advanced training courses at the Fiesole Music School, under
the direction of Gianandrea Noseda, currently Musical Director
of the Turin Regio Theatre, Principal Conductor of the Manchester
BBC Philharmonic and Artistic Director of the Stresa Settimane
Musicali. The programme is devoted to music from Eastern Europe
with the symphonic poem Hakon Jarl by Smetana, the tribute
to Tchaikovsky by Stravinsky in his ballet Le baiser de la
fée and Dvóraks Eighth Symphony. Teatro
Comunale. 8:30 pm
RICCARDO MUTI ORCHESTRA CHERUBINI - La Stagione Armonica,
this showcase for the most important Italian youth orchestras
concludes with the Orchestra Giovanile Luigi Cherubini inspired
and founded in 2004 by Riccardo Muti - a musician of fundamental
importance in the history of the Maggio Musicale, of which
he was Principal Director from 1969 to 1981. For the Cherubini
orchestras debut at the Maggio, Muti has chosen to perform
the very rare Missa defunctorum by Giovanni Paisiello, which
he will also present at the Salzburg Felsenreitschule in the
context of the Pentecost Festival, and at the Ravenna Festival.
The first version of the Missa defunctorum dates back to 1789
(the year of the French revolution): Paisiello composed it
for the funeral of Prince Gennaro di Borbone, who died of
smallpox on 1 January of that year. In 1799, following the
restoration of the Bourbons and the establishment of the Neapolitan
Republic, Paisiello reworked his score for the funeral rites
that took place in Naples for Pope Pius VI, who died in exile
in France in the wake of the Napoleonic conquests. For the
papal obsequies Paisiello (who, it was said, had originally
embraced the revolutionary cause and then become reconverted
to the Bourbon faith) added two brand-new double choruses
and maybe the composers irony? a funeral
Symphony composed two years previously to commemorate the
death of Napoleons general Lazare Hoche. Teatro Comunale.
ORIGINAL LANGUAGE CINEMA
Odeon Theatre, Piazza Strozzi 2 (across from Colle Beretto
Bar). Phone: 055 214 068.
Thursday 4 - SPECIAL EVENT: MARATHON CHE: Part One +
Part Two - at 7.30 p.m. Che: Part One (with Italian
subtitles). At 9.30 p.m. - Buffet Cuban Style (call to reserve
055 214068). At 10.15 p.m. Che: Part Two (with Italian
subtitles). Special Price All Inclusive € 15.00.
Monday 8 - Elegy by Isabel Coixetc - with Penelope Cruz, Ben
Kingsley, Dennis Hopper. 6.00 8.30 10.30 p.m.
Tuesday 9 - Death Defying Acts by Gillian Armstrong with Catherine
Zeta-Jones, Guy Pearce, Timothy Spall. 5.00 6.50
8.40 10.30 p.m.
Thursday 11 - Gran Torino by Clint Eastwood (with Italian
subtitles) with Clint Eastwood, Bee Vang, Ahney Her. 5.30
8.20 10.30 p.m.
Monday 15 - The Boat That Rocked by Richard Curtis with Gemma
Arterton, January Jones, Kenneth Branagh. 5.30 8.00
Tuesday 16 - Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian
by S. Levy with B. Stiller, A. Adams, O. Wilson. 5.00
6.55 8.45 10.35 p.m.
Thursday 18 - Choke by Clark Gregg with Sam Rockwell, Anjelica
Huston, Kelly MacDonald. 5.00 6.55 8.45
Steven Soderberghs movie Che will be shown in one marathon
screening. Benicio Del Toro stars as Che Guevara in a controversial
biopic that neither glorifies nor demonizes the South American
revolutionary (BENICIO DEL TORO WINNER CANNES FESTIVAL 2008
Elegy is a touching story based on a Philip Roth novella of
the love of an older man (American Literature professor) for
a much younger woman (Cuban-American student) and its complications
(1 NOMINATION GOLDEN BERLIN BEAR 2008).
In Gillian Armstrongs Death Defying Acts, Guy Pearce
is mythical escapologist Harry Houdini on tour in England
in 1926, embroiled in an affair with Mary MacGarvie, Scottish
Another solid performance as both star and director comes
from Clint Eastwood in his Gran Torino, a challenging story
of racism and crime and the difficult road to multicultural
Richard Curtis writes and directs The Boat That Rocked, his
affectionate comedy about illegal 1960s radio stations broadcasting
from ships in the North Sea.
The sequel to Night at the Museum (2006) is Night at the Museum:
Battle of the Smithsonian in which a host of the worlds
biggest museums characters come to life to comic effect.
Choke features Victor, a sex addict and con-man and his deranged
mother Ida in a dirty sex comedy based on a novel by Chuck
Palahniuk (Fight Club). (SPECIAL JURY PRICE SUNDANCE FILM
British Institute, Sala Ferragamo in the Harold Acton Library,
Palazzo Lanfredini, Lungarno Guicciardini 9. All lectures
begin at 6 pm and are followed by an informal drinks reception.
Wednesday 3 - Francesca White -The Figures of Virgil and Dante
in the Illuminated Manuscripts of the Divine Comedy. The earliest
illuminated manuscripts of the Divine Comedy were produced
within two decades of the poet's death, and were decorated
with a degree of elaboration usually reserved for Scripture.
Francesca White will describe the layout and arrangement of
these beautiful manuscripts, and will show how the figures
of Virgil and Dante (e.g. in the Chantilly MS) reflect the
commentary of Guido da Pisa.
Wednesday 10 - Laura Macy - The Italian Madrigal and Renaissance
Games. The Italian madrigal first became popular in the late
1520s, contemporary with the publication of Castiglione's
Il Cortegiano. The coincidence is telling for, despite its
use in contemporary drama and state occasions, the early madrigal
was essentially meant for amateurs to sing as a part of an
evening's recreation. It served similar functions to the numerous
word games that were hugely popular in Italian Renaissance
court society. Laura Macy is a former Editor in Chief of the
Grove Dictionaries of Music, published by Oxford University
Wednesday 17 - Kate Bolton -A Portrait of Ethel Smyth. Ethel
Smyth (1858-1944) was an English composer and writer who was
also active in the women's suffrage movement, and her chorus
March of the Women could be heard in the streets of London
during processions by the Women's Social and Political Union.
She was awarded honorary doctorates in music and was created
a Dame in 1922. Her music has been praised for the excellence
of its orchestration as well as for its power and grandeur.
Kate Bolton is a musicologist and broadcaster currently based
Wednesday, July 1 - Tessa Murdoch - Pietre Dure in the Rosalinde
and Arthur Gilbert Galleries at the Victoria and Albert Museum.
Sir Arthur Gilbert's (1913-2001) fascination with micro mosaics
led him to collect pictures, gold boxes, and furniture decorated
with stone mosaic, an ancient art revived under the Medici
at the Opificio in Florence in 1588. Tessa Murdoch, Deputy
Keeper of Sculpture, Metalwork, Ceramics and Glass at the
V & A, is lead curator for the new Gilbert Galleries which
open at the Museum on 29 June. She has written the essay on
Italian mosaics in the V & A's forthcoming Introduction
to the Gilbert Collection.
CLASSICO E WEEK OF WINERY OPEN HOUSES
Daily until Saturday 6, the Chianti area is holding a very
special event. The Classico è program means more than
100 wineries will be opening their doors from 10 a.m. to 1
p.m. and 3 to 6 p.m for visits and tastings. Take advantage
to discover a great many of the area's best wineries including
Panzanello, Le Fonti, Casaloste, Renzo Marinai, Savignola
Paolina, La Novella and Vignamaggio to name a few of the numerous
participants. See the official site for the full list of wineries,
guided tastings, participating restaurants and special events.
Held in Fiesole on Sunday 7 (the first Sunday of each month),
an open-air market celebrates antiquities and vintage objects
in the newly reopened central piazza of this pretty hilltop
town. Sun. 7. Piazza Mino, Fiesole. Open: 8:00 am to sundown.
Info: Tel. 055.055. www.comune.fiesole.fi.it.
MERCATINO DI APRILANTE
Artisan wares market: Sun. 7 (morning to afternoon).
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 who chooses to show up, youll
find honey and pecorino (sheeps milk) cheese makers,
hand-embroidered linens, boutique wineries, 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. 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.
THE LUMINARA OF SAN RANIERI
Every year on the night of June 16th (Tues.), the streets
running alongside the river Arno through Pisa are lit with
the enchanting glow of 70,000 candles. On this, the eve of
the feast day of Pisan patron saint, San Ranieri, candles
are set afloat on the Arno and fixed onto wood frames that
accentuate the lines of the palazzi, bridges, churches and
towers reflecting off the slowly moving river. Oil lamps light
the Leaning Tower and crenulations of the city walls surrounding
the Piazza dei Miracoli as well. Top the evening off with
a spectacular fireworks display, and you have a pretty magical
reason to visit Pisa.
ARTIGIANI IN PIAZZA MINO (Artisan fair)
On Sat. 20 in Piazza Mino, Fiesole meet the hands that forged
our past. Artisans and artisanal food producers present their
wares for sale. From 8:00 am to 8:00 pm.
FESTA INTERNAZIONALE DELLA CERAMICA IN MONTELUPO FIORENTINO
From Sat. 20 to Sunday 28, the town of Montelupo Fiorentino
celebrates the past and present of its most important industry:
ceramics. In the 1400 and 1500s the city was the centre
of ceramic production for Florence and beyond. Last year,
Montelupo inaugurated a wonderful Ceramics Museum. For one
week in June, the streets fill with ceramicists and artists
demonstrating their trade. Music and food round out the agenda.
Daily from 6:00 pm to midnight. Sunday 10:00 am to midnight.
For info on how to get to Montelupo and much more: www.tuscany.name
LINARI CLASSICAL MUSIC FESTIVAL UPDATE
Special season opening concert to be held Friday 26 at Linari
Church (S. Stefano, at 7:00 pm, phone 055 8068022 for info).
The official classical concert season will then run from July
20 to August 7, in the tiny, medieval village of Linari, situated
between Florence and Siena. Linari is hilltop Borgo
in the Chianti Classico area, one of the most enchanting parts
of Tuscany. This music festival presents a rich program of
classical music, ranging from the Baroque Era to the Twentieth
century executed by young and talented musicians from Australia,
Britain, Italy, the Netherlands, Switzerland and the United
States, many of whom perform in some of the world's great
orchestras. A special feature of the festival is the opportunity
to join your friends and the performers over a meal at the
end of most of the concerts.
The first festival was held in the summer of 2003 at the initiative
of Airdrie Armstrong Terenghi, organizer and artistic director
working with Joris van Rijn, music director. There are around
ten concerts every summer. Ranging from medieval castles and
churches to town piazzas and private villas, the unique venues
provide an extra dimension to a musical experience.
Artistic Director Armstrong Terenghi tells us: Amongst
many other delights this year, four composers will be featured
in the concert series as they are celebrating significant
anniversaries: the 250th anniversary of Handels death;
the 200th anniversary of Haydns death; the 200th anniversary
of Mendelssohns birth; and the 350th anniversary of
Another special event in 2009 is the inclusion of a composer
born in Volterra in 1737, Francesco Zanetti. Age seventeen
Zanetti became Maestro di Cappella at Volterra, and early
in 1760 he assumed the same position at Perugia Cathedral.
A master of the harpsichord, organ, and violin, he composed
not only a substantial amount of church music but also several
operas and chamber works. For the first time we have access
to his original manuscripts and some of these compositions
will be played on the 4th August at Il Moro near Impruneta
in the Chamber Music Room where Zanetti himself performed.
Please note that a few concerts and suppers have limited numbers
so please book early. Bookings will open for members on June
15 and for the general public on July 1. New booking telephone
number: 327 221 5301. For updated information on the programme
please check: www.linariclassic.com.
EXHIBITS AROUND TUSCANY
THE DELLA ROBBIA: A Renaissance Dialogue Between the Arts.
Until June 7, Arezzos Museum of Medieval and Modern
art of Arezzo presents the industrious Della Robbia family.
From the early 1400's to near the end of the 1500's, this
family produces glazed earthenware works that still speak
to us today, with grace, charm and silent sweetness.
Starting with Luca della Robbia, through the ingenious, secret
formula for creating and glazing the terra cotta masterpieces
attributed to this family, sculpture, architecture and painting
dialogue with the so-called "decorative arts (gold-smithing,
glasswork, enamels, etc). In order to better explain this
moment in art history of sharing and comparing that bred genius,
alongside the Della Robbian production, will be works by artists
contemporary to the family (Donatello, Ghiberti, Andrea del
Verrocchio, Filippo Lippi, Ghirlandaio, Perugino, Desiderio
da Settignano and others).
Arezzo, Museo Statale dArte Medievale e Moderna, Via
San Lorentino 8. Open: daily from 9:00 am to 7:00 pm. Ticket:
10.00 euro. For info: www.mostradellarobbia.it
GENIUS & PASSION, THE RESTORATION OF LIPPI'S FRESCOES
Over five centuries ago, Filippo Lippi ascended three stories
of scaffolding in the dark recesses of Pratos cathedral.
Today, the three-tiered frescoes, which cover the walls and
vaults of the main chapel with stories of St. John the Baptist
and St. Stephen, are visible in renewed splendor after seven
years of restoration. Small, guided tours of the fresco cycle
now allow the public to come face to face with Lippi. Prato
Cathedral. Open Mon. to Sat. 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. Admission:
4 euro with audio guide. Small, guided tours available by