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Palazzo Pitti

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Rent, Sell and Manage Properties in Florence and Tuscany
NEWSLETTER October 2014

In October, after the excitement of Corri La Vita (the last Sunday of September, life mellows a bit in Florence. It’s time to take an indoor/outdoor approach with lunch in the piazza in the sun and the afternoons and evenings at the new art exhibits and classical music concerts. Out in Tuscany the harvest festivals are bursting with truffles, new oil, and chestnuts. Best wishes for a fun-filled October from SUZANNE, CORSO, BEI, LESLIE, VANNI, ANNA PIA, ANN and MARIO.



As most of our faithful readers know Corri la Vita (Run for Life) is the top charity supported by Pitcher & Flaccomio. It is a 13km competitive race and 5km non-competitive walk for charity, supporting public health facilities specializing in the fight against breast cancer. This is the 12th edition, held in collaboration with L.I.L.T, the Italian League for the Fight Against Cancer - the Florence Section.

This year, we are excited to announce, the participation beat the already extraordinary results achieved in 2013 (30,000 participants and €430,000 received) with over 32,000 participants and €470,000 raised!


P&F PICK RENTAL APARTMENTS FOR OCTOBER – Two Extraordinary Apartments in the Hills

This month we have a special offering – two apartments in the same refurbished historic building 30 minutes walk from the Ponte Vecchio.

This traditional peach-coloured house on it own gated property is divided into 2 apartments This hamlet located in a cul-de-sac on one of Florence’s surrounding hills is approx. 3 kms from the Ponte Vecchio (Old bridge) and is ten minutes by car and 35 minutes by foot to the centre of the city. A quiet neighbourhood with olive and cyprus trees interspersed with villas and farm houses. Strategically positioned between the two campuses of the International school, this free standing house (on three sides) with garden has windows overlooking the Arno River Valley.

Casa Carla is a ground floor apartment is approx. 120 sq. mts. (1,200 sq. ft) with a garden of approx. 30 sq. mts. (300 sq. ft). It is a cosy apartment in a rustic house with an enclosed garden area suitable for al fresco dining or cultivating a herb garden. The open floor plan makes it ideal as a family home (4 people maximum), or equally suitable for a couple.

Casa Carla consists of: Living room/dining room (table for 4/8 persons, 2 doors access the garden), kitchen (table for 4/6 persons), 3 bedrooms (1 double and 2 with single beds), 2 bathrooms (1 en-suite with tub and hand shower, 1 with shower stall), laundry alcove, cellar, garden, and parking for one car (electric gate).

This beautiful apartment has terra cotta floors and exposed original wooden beams in several ceilings. One bathroom is tiled with vintage Italian1950’s tiles. The furnishings are a mixture of antique Italian country pieces together with practical Ikea additions. The soft furnishings are mostly cotton and linen.

For more information click this link.

is a first floor apartment, which is on three levels is approx. 150 sq. mts. (1,500 sq. ft) with a garden of approx. 50 sq. mts. (500 sq. ft). It is an unusual apartment in a rustic old farm house with an enclosed garden. The multi levels and open floor plan make for an ideal family home.

Observatory has the following amenities: Ground floor level: Entrance and Garden with parking for one car (electric gate). First floor (up 15 steps): Living room, dining room/kitchen (with working fireplace and table for 8-10 persons), 3 bedrooms (1 double and 2 with twin beds, 1 has a loft study), 3 bathrooms ( 2 en-suite with tubs and hand showers, 1 with shower stall), and a Laundry room (access to garden). Second floor (up 15 steps): Study (access to the terrace) and Terrace (table for 4 persons).

Up to six people can enjoy living in this space with the terra cotta floors and exposed original wooden beams in several ceilings. Bathrooms are all tiled with vintage Italian 1950’s tiles. The furnishings, like Casa Carla, are a mixture of antique Italian country pieces together with practical Ikea additions. The soft furnishings are mostly cotton and linen.

For more information click this link.

BEST EXHIBIT FOR OCTOBER – Palazzo Strozzi Celebrates Picasso

As of 20 September, Palazzo Strozzi in Florence will be focusing on modern art once again with a major new event devoted to one of the greatest masters of 20th century painting, Pablo Picasso.

The exhibition will present a broad selection of works by this great master of modern art in an effort to stimulate a reflection on his influence and interaction with such leading Spanish artists as Joan Miró, Salvador Dalí, Juan Gris, Maria Blanchard and Julio González: art reflecting on art and on the relationship between the real and the surreal, the artist's heartfelt involvement in the tragedy of unfolding history, the emergence of the monster with a human face, and the metaphor of erotic desire as a primary source of inspiration for the artist's creativity and world vision.

Picasso and Spanish Modernity will be showing some ninety works by Picasso and other artists, ranging from painting to sculpture, drawing, engraving and even film, thanks to the Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi's synergistic cooperation with the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía in Madrid. The works of art on display will include such celebrated masterpieces as Woman's Head (1910), Portrait of Dora Maar (1939) and The Painter and the Model (1963) by Picasso, Siurana, the Path (1917) and Figure and Bird in the Night (1945) by Miró and Dalí's Arlequin (1927), along with Picasso's drawings, engravings and preparatory paintings for his huge masterpiece Guernica (1937), none of which have been displayed outside Spain in such vast numbers before now.


Tel. + 39 055 2645155

Opening times: Daily 9.00-20.00, Thursdays 9.00-23.00

Tickets sold until one hour before closing time.

Tickets: Full price € 10.00, Concessions € 8.50, 8.00, 7.50, Schools € 4.00


Residing in the historical Palazzo della Arte dei Giudici e Notai – palace of judges and notaries – the restaurant’s frescoes include the earliest recorded depiction of Dante and Boccaccio. History buffs will be delighted to learn that the palace’s Roman foundations can be viewed in the basement. Ask for the hand held device that will give you a tour of the frescos.

Offering traditional Tuscan dishes, including Pappardelle with Chianina beef ragout and T-bone steak, Giovanna Iorio prefers the title of ‘cook’ to ‘head chef’. There are many creative dishes on the menu, such as celery soup with pineapple and scallops, or stone bass fillet with red beetroots and stewed savoy cabbage with capers. The price-fixed lunch is an affordable alternative.

The restaurant’s cellar includes wines from smaller producers in addition to great Italian and French labels.

Gothic candleholders, exposed brickwork and white linens create a romantic atmosphere. For a private tour of the palace or to organize a private event, contact Restaurant Manager Silvia Del Priore.

Via del Proconsolo 16r, 50122

www.allemurate.it ; +39 055 240 618

BEST BOOK FOR OCTOBER – His Last Duchess by Gabrielle Kimm

“That's my last duchess painted on the wall,” the duke said.

Seduced by the hot sun and blinding passions of Renaissance Italy, sixteen-year-old Lucrezia de' Medici sees a gilded life stretching ahead. Her wealthy new husband handpicked her to be his bride, and his great castle in Ferrara will be her playground. But Alfonso d'Este, Duke of Ferrara quickly proves to be just as dangerous and mysterious as he is dark and handsome, and the stone walls of the castle seem to trap Lucrezia like a prison.

Only the duke's lover Francesca seems able to tame his increasing fury, as his desperate need to produce an heir drives him deep into precarious obsession. With her head full of heartbroken dreams, Lucrezia flees from him down a dangerous path that may cost her everything.

Step into the elegant world of the Robert Browning poem "My Last Duchess," as imagined by Gabrielle Kimm, where she brings to life the passions and people of sixteenth-century Tuscany and Ferrara. It is a chilling story of forbidden love and dark decadence that will haunt you.

BEST BOOKS FOR KIDS FOR OCTOBER – The Ringling Chronicles: Rinascimento by Tim Whitney

What do John Ringling (of the Ringling Brother's Circus fame), Filippo Brunelleschi, Donatello (the sculptor, not the Ninja Turtle), Massacio, Giorgio Vasari, Leonardo da Vinci, The Medici Family, and a 12 year-old-girl from Sarasota, Florida all have in common? They are all characters in Whitney's captivating new novel, 'Rinascimento', the first in his art history/time traveling series, The Ringling Chronicles.

Join Michela, a brilliant yet quirky young heroine as she races through time to rescue a stranded time traveler, meets the greatest artists of the Renaissance, and assists Brunelleschi with the competition for the commission of the Duomo, one of the greatest architectural marvels of all time.

It's one heck of a Renaissance ride.


The Maggio Musicale Fiorentino is back for the fall season with a fantastic offering of opera and classical music. The high point is the opera Cavalleria Rusticana by Hayden on October 23, 26 and 30. But for an interesting venue go to the Church of Santo Stefano on the 5th and 7th to hear the Maggio Chorus perform Mozart’s Requiem. There is much more so check the web site at http://www.operadifirenze.it/en/.




Pop to the Paperback Exchange for the book signing event with prize-winning author (and Italian knight) Dianne Hales. This was our P&F pick book last month. The Florentine is proud to be a media partner for this unique event.

For more information, see www.monalisabook.com or email redazione@theflorentine.net.

October 2, 5.30-7.30pm

Paperback Exchange, via delle Oche, 4R, Florence


Until October 5, see the exhibition of the works of Giuseppe Penone, entitled “Prospettiva vegetale” found at Forte Belvedere and the Boboli Gardens. There is a fascinating dialogue between sculpture, architecture and landscape with this exhibition, which connects Forte Belvedere and the Boboli Gardens, two UNESCO heritage sites.

Forte Belvedere - Via San Leonardo, 1; Boboli Gardens - Piazza Pitti 1 - www.comune.firenze.it

CONTAMINATIO – Contemporary Art in Florence

Until October 15, one of the great names in contemporary art, Ugo Riva, shows his work in the exhibition Contaminatio [Influence]. The focal pieces of the exhibit are 20 paintings from 2011, a series titled Sindrome di Jacopo e Vincent, inspired by the figures of Jacopo Pontormo and Vincent Van Gogh. The main theme of the exhibition is influence, and Riva’s work combines aspects of the two artists’ work, his sources of inspiration.

The setting, Studio Marcello Tommasi, is very special indeed: it’s where Cellini crafted his Perseus.

See www.facebook.com/etraevents.studiotommasi for more information.

Studio Marcello Tommasi, via della Pergola, 57


There is a new exhibition that just opened at the Salvatore Ferragamo Museum. The exhibition Equilibrium can be seen at the Museo Ferragamo, from June 2014 to April 2015.

The museum, opened in 1995, was created by the Ferragamo family after the international success of an exhibition on the great shoe designer Salvatore Ferragamo’s work, originally held at the Strozzi Palace in Florence. The exhibition soon became a travelling event and was featured in venues such as the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, the County Museum in Los Angeles, the Guggenheim Museum in New York, the Sogestu Kai Foundation in Tokyo and the Museo des Bellas Artes in Mexico City.

As a demonstration of the cultural value of the institution, in 1999 the Museo Salvatore Ferragamo received the Guggenheim Impresa & Cultura Award, yearly recognized to companies particularly fostering cultural activities and art.

The museum, located in the heart of Florence, is housed in the Spini Feroni palace, which is also home of the Ferragamo company since 1938.

The exhibition Equilibrium, curated by Stefania Ricci, Sergio Risaliti and Emanuele Ennia, the exhibition portrays the attention, almost a devotion, that Salvatore Ferragamo always reserved to the anatomy of foot, central element of his creations. Balancing on feet is a capability that can be transformed in art, representing it with sculpture of painting, but also by dancing or climbing mountains. Creations and original drawings by Ferragamo are thus placed in direct relationship with sculptures, paintings, installations and videos, creating a multi-face exhibition where the beauty and significance of equilibrium are depicted through a diverse and fascinating set of expressive means.

Open 10am to 7:30pm every day.

Salvatore Ferragamo Museum – Piazza Santa Trinità 5

MUSEUM OF THE CAPPELLE MEDICEE – Why is all of this art still in Florence?

Until October 2, see the intriguing exhibit with a long title – “Art and Politics in the Florentine years of Anna Maria Luisa de' Medici Elettrice Palatina”. It addresses the last years of the art patronage of the Medici, arguably one of the most influential families to support the blooming of the Renaissance.

Florence owes most of the Medici artistic wealth, which the whole world envies, to her: Anna Maria Luisa de 'Medici, the Elettrice Palatina (1667-1743). The exhibition focuses on the art and politics of the city from 1737 to the distribution of her estate after 1743.

Piazza Madonna degli Aldobrandini, 6 - from Mon to Sun 8.15am-5pm (ticket office closes at 4.40pm - closing II and IV Sun of the month, I/III/V Mon of the month, New Year's Day, May 1st and Christmas ) - 8 euro - visit 3 euro (reservations: Florence Museums, 055 294883)


Every Wednesday at 18.00 from September to June there is a lecture, concert or other event in the Sala Ferragamo in the Harold Acton Library followed by an informal drinks reception.

Wednesday, October 01, 18.00

Talk with music: Julia Waldman and Peter Dulborough

Our own Julia Waldman and Peter Dulborough provide an overview of British pop music in the sixties and early seventies, focusing on the Beatles, Queen and Pink Floyd (with video footage and interviews).

Wednesday, October 08, 18.00

Lecture: Laura Rattray

Dr Laura Rattray, Reader in North American Literature at the University of Glasgow, discusses the intimate and fruitful friendship between the novelist Edith Wharton and the owners of Villa I Tati, Bernard and Mary Berenson.

Wednesday, October 15, 18.00

Lecture: Matteo Sansone

With the help of examples, the musicologist Matteo Sansone illustrates the ravishingly beautiful music of the composer Carlo Gesualdo (1560-1613), who murdered of his wife and her lover.

Wednesday, October 22, 18.00

Lecture: Jonathan Keates

The novelist and biographer Jonathan Keates, chairman of the Venice in Peril Fund, looks at the Anglo-Tuscans in the time of the last Grand Duke.

Wednesday, October 29, 18.00


The First World War, to a greater extent than the Second, produced an abundant harvest of poetry and prose, selections from which we will read in this anniversary tribute.

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.

All about Eve?—A season of films by women directors

Is a film made by a woman different from a film made by a man? Why are there relatively so few women directors? Is there such a thing as a ‘woman's film'? Do men make better ‘women' films' than women? Do women make better ‘men's films' than men? Are films directed by women a class, a genre, a type in themselves? Do any of these questions matter? It is in asking questions like these, rather than answering them that inspiration for this series lies. Necessarily eclectic and seldom objective, with many significant and probably unforgivable omissions, the selection unfolds chronologically, offering a range of sensibilities, eccentricities, novelties, gender and queer issues, from the challenging to the banal, from light entertainment to political commitment, from the arcane to the depressingly familiar, from the comic to the disturbing. A cinematic kaleidoscope just like any other? (Non-English language films are subtitled.)

Wednesday, October 01, 2014. 20.00


by Leni Riefenstahl, 1935

Wednesday, October 08, 20.00


by Dorothy Arzner, 1940

Wednesday, October 15,20.00

Film: CLEO DE 5 A 7

by Agnes Varda, 1962

Wednesday, October 22, 20.00


by Liliana Cavani, 1974

Wednesday, October 29, 20.00


by Lina Wertmuller, 1975

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.


CALL FOR PAPERS BY THE BRITISH INSTITUTE – Shakespeare and his Contemporaries

The 2015 IASEMS Graduate Conference at The British Institute in Florence is a one-day interdisciplinary and bilingual English-Italian forum open to PhD students and researchers who have obtained their doctorates within the past 5 years. This year's conference will focus on Humour in Shakespeare's Arcadia: Gender, Genre, and Wordplay in Early Modern Comedy. Abstracts are to be submitted by Friday 31 October 2014 by email to ilaria.natali@unifi.it

Please find more information downloading the following pdf file:



F as in Fair.

16 to 19 October, the Fiera di Firenze returns to Florence! Building on the success of last year, this year promises to be a bigger better shopping experience. Find Italian-designed furniture manufacturers and retailers, home decor, design, books, food and wine.

F as in Fantastic events.

Not only shopping and tastings of all kinds, culinary workshops, cocktails and a buffet with live performances by the best artists, but also markets, exhibitions, photographic projections ... and many more surprises.

F as in Fortezza.

Go to the Fortezza del Basso for four days of shopping, entertainment, events, in the largest and most modern exhibition space in Tuscany, between modern pavilions and 700-year-old locations with great historical flavor, the fair becomes a veritable feast.

F as in Florence.

Come to the Fiera di Firenze at the Foortezza del Basso from October 16 to 19. For more info see: www.fieradifirenze.com/fiera-firenze



If you ever wanted to listen to classical music in a theater where you could imagine Verdi or Mozart to walk in any second go to the jewel box Pergola Theater. The Amici della Musica of Florence presents various concerts at the Teatro della Pergola. Works by Haydn, Schubert, Mendelssohn, Bach, and Mozart are only a small sample of what will be performed.

Concerts take place on October 12, 18, 19, 25, and 26.

Find the full schedule here: http://www.amicimusica.fi.it/stagione/

Teatro della Pergola, Via della Pergola, info: 055/609012 – 055 607440 - 055 2264333, and www.amicimusica.fi.it


The Maggio Musicale Fiorentino Festival is back with a autumn series! The 78th season of Florence's historic opera company has been one of the best yet. There is a fantastic offering of opera and classical music. The high point is the opera Cavalleria Rusticana by Hayden on October 23, 26 and 30. But for an interesting venue go to the Church of Santo Stefano on the 5th and 7th to hear the Maggio Chorus perform Mozart’s Requiem. There is much more so check the web site at http://www.operadifirenze.it/en/.

Find the calendar here: http://www.operadifirenze.it/en/

Ticket Office Teatro Comunale

Corso Italia 16 - Firenze - fax: +39 055 287222

Tues. - Fri. 10:00-16:30 & Sat. 10:00-13:00

Teatro Comunale – Corso Italia 12, Firenze

Opera di Firenze – Viale Fratelli Rosselli 1, Firenze

Tickets on line




In the beautiful and intimate setting of St Mark’s Church, the performances are complete operas, apart from one or two slight adaptations to suit the intimate setting. http://concertoclassico.blogspot.it/p/programme.html See the web site for the complete schedule.

All start at 8:30pm or 9:15pm

Price: 30 €, seniors 25 €, students 15 €

Info: 340 8119192


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


On October 29 and running fifty days, into December, the Odeon Cinema presents its Eighth Edition of the popular Fifty Days of Film. "50 Days of International Cinema in Florence", is the largest film festival in Italy. There are nine international festivals: Women in Cinema, French Film Festival, The Balkan “Express”, the Florence Queer Festival, Contemporary Art Film Festival, Florence Indian Film Festival, Documentary Film Festival, , New Italian Cinema, and the Ethono-Music Film Festival. Info: www.50giornidicinema.com. These films all are screened at the Odeon Cinema Theater in Piazza Strozzi.

Check the web site http://www.cinehall.it/ for updated information or stop by the theater for a brochure. The Fifty Days of Film festival starts at the end of October. Located in Piazza Strozzi. See also: http://www.50giornidicinema.it/

FLORENCE QUEER FILM FESTIVAL 2014 – Save the Date for LGBT Films

2014 marks the 12th Edition of the Florence Queer Film Festival, which is packed full of films with LGBT themes. This year’s directors are Bruno Casini and Roberta Vannucci. Save the dates of November 21 to 27.

For all of the details see the Festival website at http://www.florencequeerfestival.it/


A couple of months ago the bell tower on the Palazzo Vecchio was opened to visitors. Literally "towering" over Florence, the 95 mt. high Tower of Palazzo Vecchio is one of the city's unmistakable symbols and focal points. It is also one of the oldest parts of the building built between 1299 and the early 14th century, possibly to a design by Arnolfo di Cambio, as the seat of the city's government. The interior of the tower was witness to many important historical events, as it was the home to the Alberghetto, which was the cell that held such state prisoners as Cosimo the Elder before his exile and Girolamo Savonarola before his execution.

Ticket Office inside courtyard of Palazzo Vecchio, Piazza Signoria (tel. 055 276 8325)

Tickets: €6.50 to climb the tower or €10 if you combine it with a visit to the Palazzo Vecchio. It’s open every day from 9am to 9pm, except on Thursdays when it closes at 2pm. There’s no need to book tickets in advance. Web Site: http://www.palazzovecchio-familymuseum.it/


Go in the evening to beat the crowds!

Every Friday from July 4 the Uffizi Gallery, the Accademia Gallery, the Museum of Medici Chapels can be visited between 19.00 and 22.00 on top of the regularly scheduled hours.

Every Friday from August 8 also the Bargello National Museum can be visited between 19.00 and 22.00. BUT the Bargello on September 12 & 19 will close to the public at 17:00.


The Italian state museums, including the Uffizi, Accademia and Bargello are free the first Sunday day of every month. Italian Minister of Culture Dario Franceschini announced revolutionary changes for State museums across all of Italy.

The major change is that free tickets will only be available for those under 18 years old (and a few other groups, such as teachers) and reduced tickets for those under 25 years old. Everyone else will be paying a full entry ticket. This means that all over 65 years old will now be paying entrance fees.

The second major change is that every first Sunday of the month state museums will be free for everyone as part of the initiative “Sunday at the Museum“.

Another change announced as part of the Ministerial decree signed and announced yesterday is that there will be two annual “Nights at the Museum” every calendar year, where entrance only costs a euro (as it did in this last edition in May) and opening times extend late into the night while all major museums, including the Uffizi Gallery, will have extended opening times until 10pm every single Friday evening.



So many festivals and fairs celebrating the chestnut take place in Tuscany each fall, that we will simply list a few of the details here, with websites and other contacts for further information:

Sun. 5, 12, 19 & 26: Marradi – Sagra delle Castagne - Located in the upper Mugello, Marradi has one of the biggest and best chestnut festivals, including a special steam train from Florence (Campo di Marti train station) on every Sunday in October. Open: 9 am – 7 pm. Phone 055 8045170, 055 80442363 or see www.sagradellecastagne.it or www.promarradi.it for information & train times.

Sat. 18 and Sun 19: Ronta – Sagra della Polenta e delle Castagne – Mugello again, for a hearty chestnut polenta served with meaty ragu. Join in for a special dinner on Saturday, and lunch and dinner on Sunday. Phone 055 8403386 for info.

Sat. 18 and Sun. 19: Lucolena – Festa delle Castagne – near Greve in the Chianti Classico region – info: 055 8546299 - 055 8545271 – www.comune.greve-in-chianti.fi.it


From Sat. 11 to Sun. 19, Impruneta is the place to be for everything from a horse race to a donkey race, from cattle and chicken competitions, to food, crafts, wine and fireworks. All week long a craft fair will run in the center piazza of town. Watch the Palio di San Luca horse race, and stay for a fabulous fireworks display. Friday evening at 9:30 cheer on the town teams in a tug-of-war, winners take all. For info call 055 2313729, 055 2036627.


Pievasciata, a tiny village in the heart of the Chianti region, has been transformed into a contemporary art center. The focal point, the Chianti Sculpture Park, a permanent exhibition of sculptures and installations, is an integral part of a mystical wooded area.

There are three distinctive characteristics of the Park: integration of art and nature; diversity of cultures, represented by artists from all over the world; and a variety of materials. Each artist has been invited to visit the wood in order to choose a location and subsequently submit a site-specific proposal. This accounts for the harmony of the sculptures with the trees, the sounds, the colors, the light, and other elements of the wood. In fact, these man-made works do not extend beyond the limits of nature; rather, they integrate with it and enhance it. Inside the Park an Amphitheatre has also been created to offer visitors a rich program of concerts and cultural events.

The Chianti Sculpture Park is an indispensable stop not only for art lovers, but also for anyone who wishes to experience the delights of a walk through nature while admiring fascinating works of art. The visit is suitable for persons of every age on foot along a walking path of 1 km, but is also accessible with a child’s pushchair or a wheelchair.

Parco Sculture del Chianti, S.P. 9, Loc. La Fornace 48/49, 53010 Pievasciata (Siena); Tel. +39 0577 357151

Fabulous web site: http://www.chiantisculpturepark.it/, http://www.chiantisculpturepark.it/en-index.htm

Email: info@chiantisculpturepark.it


Head to Volterra on October 25, 26, 31,and November 1-2, for an unique festival celebrating a delicious treasure of earth, the white truffle. The 17th Edition of Voterragusto, makes cheese, wine, chocolate and white truffles the focus of the theme weekends that will be based in Piazza XX Settembre of the famous Etruscan Tuscan town. Exibitions, lectures, tasting... White Truffles in every dish and in every form!

Hours: 11:45 am - 7:45 pm

For more information: +39 058887257

Web site: http://www.volterragusto.com


From 9 to 12 October in Tuscany, Pisa, attend the Third Edition of Internet Festival, one of the most important European events dedicated to the digital world. Last year’s edition of the Festival was a great success: 280 thousand visitors in four days, 20 dedicated locations, 65 thousand users connected via Web, 150 events, 200 speakers from 60 countries.

Pisa is heart and brain of the Italian network and first Italian area for research investment and development, thanks to the 1300 high technology enterprises of which 800 works in the ICT sector.

IF2014 will celebrate Galileo Galilei, whose 450th birth anniversary is celebrated this year.

The Festival will also analyze the Internet Economies, into eight sections: Take the Money, Make it Good, Go Green, Design to Innovate, Culture is Smarter, Cooperation Wanted, Break the Rules and Play the Game. These are intended to investigate themes related to culture, participation, opportunities for young people, green start-ups, design, game business and the connection between hackers and privacy.

A very important area will be the T-Tour one, dedicated to playful educational workshops for adults, teenagers and children, which in 2013′s edition registered more than six thousand attendees.

Internet Festival, 9 – 12 October 2014, Pisa www.internetfestival.it


ITALIAN LIFE RULE: Let the Hands Do the Talking

Seen in Livorno: Thumb to nose, with remaining fingers vertically extended and wagging.

Italians are famous for “talking” with their hands. They are often more expressive in silence than in words. Sometimes it is unseen emphasis as when talking on their cellphones (especially in “hands free” mode). But they are also able to multitask with gestures while smoking a cigarette, eating a piece of pizza or downshifting a car through rush-hour traffic.

Everyone knows the classic fingers pinched against the thumb that can mean “Whaddya mean?” or “I wasn’t born yesterday” or the world has adopted the open hands that ask, “What’s happening?” Hands placed in prayer become a sort of supplication, a rhetorical question: “What do you expect me to do about it?” or “What do you mean?” and a flick of the fingers out from the chin is a bit rude: “I don’t care.” The world has adopted the shrugged shoulders and two raised hands that say, “Who knows?”

A hand circled slowly, may indicate “Whatever” or “That’ll be the day,” more eloquently than words. Some gestures are simple: the side of the hand against the belly means hungry; the index finger “screwed” into the cheek means something tastes good; fingers brushing the chin, indicating “I don’t give a damn,” the classic brushoff; and tapping one’s wrist is a universal sign for “hurry up.” Pressing the thumb and index finger of one hand together and drawing a straight horizontal line in the air expresses “Perfetto!(“Perfect!“).

In Italy, children and adolescents gesture, the elderly gesture, and so does everybody in between. Recently, Italy’s highest court ruled that a man who inadvertently struck an 80-year-old woman while gesticulating in a piazza in the southern region Puglia was liable for civil damages, but in 2008, when Umberto Bossi, the colorful founder of the conservative Northern League, raised his middle finger during the singing of Italy’s national anthem, prosecutors in Venice determined that the gesture, while obscene and the cause of widespread outrage, was not a crime.

Gestures have long been a part of Italy’s political theater. Former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is a noted gesticulator. In a photo op with world leaders he held two fingers behind President Obama’s head. To Americans it denotes bunny ears or devil’s horns; to Italians it is “fa le corna” or a sign that the person is a cuckold.

Americans “flip the bird” and give someone the finger. The equivalent gesture in Italy is more forceful: Men (rarely seen as a female gesture) clench the right fist and jerk the forearm up while slapping the right bicep with the left palm. It is considered both rude and obscene and often leads to a fight unlike the less emphatic middle finger.

Expert on gestures have identified around 250 gestures that Italians use in everyday conversation. As with most things Italian, gestures have a rich history. One theory holds that Italians developed them as an alternative form of communication during the centuries when they lived under foreign occupation — by Austria, France and Spain in the 14th through 19th centuries — as a way of communicating without their overlords understanding. Over the centuries, the Italian language has evolved, but gestures have remained relatively unchanged.

Books, from the scholarly (i.e., Andrea de Jorio's 1832 treatise La mimica degli antichi investigata nel gestire napoletano ("The Body Language of the Ancients as Interpreted in Neapolitan Gesture")and the new English translation Gesture in Naples and Gesture in Classical Antiquity (2000) and Bruno Munari's Dizionario dei gesti italiani (1994)) to the helpful English travel guide (also by Munari) have been written interpreting Italian hand gestures.

If a visitor to Italy wants to understand what is not said, a bit of study and practice will come in handy because what means “Hook’em Horns” to a University of Texas alumnus means something completely different in Italy.

Tuscan Traveler’s Italian Food Rules written by Ann Reavis has been published! Find a copy at The Paperback Exchange at Via delle Oche, 4r, or at BM Bookshop, Borgo Ognissante, 4.

To read more, go to TuscanTraveler.com.


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