ART HISTORY AND ITALIAN LANGUAGE COURSES IN FLORENCE AT SCUOLA TOSCANA:
Florence was built on the site of an Etruscan settlement and the later ancient Roman colony of Florentia (founded in 59 BC). As a matter of fact, the Scuola Toscana is located almost on the place of the ancient Anfiteatro Romano ... so this is one of the first thing you will be showed by our teacher!
This Tuscan city became a symbol of the Renaissance during the early Medici period (between the 15th and the 16th centuries), reaching extraordinary levels of economic and cultural development. One of our instructors is specialised in the Medici Family History, and presents the history of this family during many of her lessons. The Medicis are anyway one of the subjects of our course's visits.
The present historic centre covers 505 ha and is bounded by the remains of the city’s 14th-century walls. These walls are represented by surviving gates, towers, and the two Medici strongholds: that of Saint John the Baptist in the north, popularly known as “Fortezza da Basso”, and the Fort of San Giorgio del Belvedere (Forte di Belvedere) located amongst the hills of the south side. The Arno River runs east and west through the city and a series of bridges connects its two banks including Ponte Vecchio and Ponte Santa Trinita. Every bridge has its history, and you will be talked about it during the visits of Art history.
Seven hundred years of cultural and artistic blooming are tangible today in the 14th-century Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore (we visit it together with the famous Battistero and the recently re opened "Museo dell'Opera del Duomo); in the Church of Santa Croce, which is so close to our school that you can see it from our windows; in the Palazzo Vecchio, where we visit the "stanze segrete" (secret rooms); the Uffizi Gallery (we visit it at least twice in a typical Art History course); and in the Palazzo Pitti. All tickets included with Italian language and art history course
The city’s history is further evident in the artistic works of great masters such as Giotto, Brunelleschi, Botticelli and Michelangelo. In our art history courses we visit all masterpieces of these great artists - and we walk together with them in the streets of ancient Florence.
The Historic Centre of Florence can be perceived as a unique social and urban achievement, the result of persistent and long-lasting creativity, which includes museums, churches, buildings and artworks of immeasurable worth. Florence had an overwhelming influence on the development of architecture and the fine arts, first in Italy, and then in Europe. It is within the context of Florence that the concept of the Renaissance came to be. This heritage bestows upon Florence unique historical and aesthetic qualities.
The urban complex of Florence is in itself a unique artistic realization, an absolute chef-d’œuvre, the fruit of continuous creation over more than six centuries. In addition to its museums (the Archaeological Museum, Uffizi, Bargello, Pitti, Galleria dell’Accademia), the greatest concentration of universally renowned works of art in the world is found here – the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, the Baptistery and the Campanile of Giotto, Piazza della Signoria dominated by Palazzo Vecchio and the Palazzo Uffizi, San Lorenzo, Santa Maria Novella, Santa Croce and the Pazzi chapel, Santo Spirito, San Miniato, and the Convent of San Marco which houses paintings of Fra Angelico.Florence has such a plenty of historical places, that every walk you will discovery something unexpected !
Since the Quattrocento, Florence has exerted a predominant influence on the development of architecture and the monumental arts – first in Italy, and throughout Europe: the artistic principles of the Renaissance were defined there from the beginning of the 15th century by Brunelleschi, Donatello and Masaccio. It was in the Florentine milieu that two universal geniuses of the arts – Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo – were formed and asserted.
Criterion (iii): The Historic Centre of Florence attests in an exceptional manner, and by its unique coherence, to its power as a merchant-city of the Middle Ages and of the Renaissance. From its past, Florence had preserved entire streets, fortified palaces (Palazzo Spini, Palazzo del Podestà, Palazzo della Signoria), lodges (Loggia del Bigallo, Loggia dei Lanzi, Loggia degli Innocenti and del Mercato Nuovo), fountains, a marvellous 14th-century bridge lined with shops, the Ponte Vecchio. Various trades, organized into prosperous arts have left several monuments such as the Or San Michele.
This can be the second week program of Italian language and art history course at Scuola Toscana.
Florence, a first-rate economic and political power in Europe from the 14th to the 17th century, was covered during that period with prestigious buildings which translated the munificence of the bankers and the princes: Palazzo Rucellai, Palazzo Strozzi, Palazzo Gondi, Palazzo Riccardi-Medici, Palazzo Pandolfini, Palazzo Pitti and the Boboli Gardens – as well as the sacristy of San Lorenzo, the funerary chapel of the Medicis, and the Biblioteca Laurenziana and others.
Florence is materially associated with events of universal importance. It was in the milieu of the Neo-Platonic Academia that the concept of the Renaissance was forged. Florence is the birthplace of modern humanism inspired by Landino, Marsilio Ficino, Pico della Mirandola and others.
The Historic Centre of Florence comprises all the elements necessary to express its Outstanding Universal Value. Surrounded by Arnolfian walls that date to the 14th century, the city includes the “quadrilatero romano,” which is made up of the present Piazza della Repubblica, the narrow, cobblestone streets of the medieval city, and the Renaissance city. The urban environment of the historic centre remains almost untouched and the surrounding hills provide a perfect harmonious backdrop. This landscape maintains its Tuscan features, adding to its value.
The setting of Florence, surrounded by the Tuscan hills and bisected by the Arno River, has remained unchanged throughout the centuries. Florentines, aware of their own architectural past, have been able to preserve original building techniques with traditional building materials such as “pietra forte”, “pietra serena”, plasterwork, and frescoes. The Historic Centre of Florence has safeguarded its distinguishing characteristics, both in terms of building volume and decorations. The city has respected its medieval roots such as its urban form with narrow alleyways, and its Renaissance identity, exemplified by Palazzo Pitti’s imposing structure. These values are still appreciable within the historic centre, notwithstanding the 19th-century transformations undertaken during the period in which Florence served as the capital of Italy. Even the building where Scuola Toscana is located brings
the legacy of both the Renaissance is the nineteenth-century transformations.
Unique Florentine handicraft and traditional shops in the historic centre are a concrete testimonial to the local past. Thus, they guarantee continuity for an outstanding tradition perpetuating the historical