Thursday, September 15, 2011

Prato: Festival Contemporanea 11

Between September 23 and October 8, 2011 at the Teatro Mestastasio there will be a contemporary program, not only Renaissance art, but something modern and beautiful to admire and enjoy in Tuscany.

All of this is in Prato, not far from Florence, symbol of the Renaissance art and literature.

Go and have fun!!

A presto!


Saturday, September 10, 2011

The European Baroque: what's outside Italy?

The Drunken Hercules by Rubens

Despite various wars, the Baroque was the style of the seventeenth-century Europe.

The Baroque was passionate, energetic and exciting. Church and palace ceilings were replaced by painted illusions of limitless space, often extravagant and ostentatious, such as the Triumph of Divine Providence for the Palazzo Barberini by Pietro da Cortona.

Sculpture and paintings expand spatially: they evoke emotions and feelings!

The Baroque style took shape in Rome, attracted artists all over Italy, such as collectors and connoisseurs from everywhere, so what was the situation outside Italy?

Come to next series of lectures at New Farm State School during the last term for 2011.

Lessons start on:
Thursday 13th October at 6.30pm.

A presto!


Lavazza Italian Film Festival 2011 in Australia

Next week the Italian Film Festival 2011 is on again in this part of the world. It will start in Melbourne and Sydney to then reach Brisbane in October.

If you have missed all the nice Italian movies in Italy, this is the perfect occasion to go and enjoy an Italian movie and practice your Italian at the main time, so enjoy!!

Rugby World Cup 2011: Auckland and New Zealand

A Haka in Auckland!


Auckland is a wonderful city and a fantastic place to live, there are galleries, museums, shopping and much much more....but this year there is the Rugby World Cup 2011. It started yesterday in Auckland, the opening ceremony was wonderful and obviously the All Black have won the match against Tonga.

Tomorrow the Italian team will play vs Wallabies (Australia) in Albany on the North Shore at 3.30pm, New Zealand time! Many matches will be in Auckland, but others around New Zealand, so wherever you are be a supporter.....

Now for me...which team I should support?

A presto!


Saturday, September 3, 2011

The Macchina di Santa Rosa

The Macchina of Santa Rosa is an annual celebration in the city of Viterbo!!  Santa Rosa is the patron of Viterbo, she lived during the XIII century.

Every year Viterbo celebrates this event with a huge manifestation, called La Macchina di Santa Rosa, where a big tower decorated with lights, tall about 30m, is carried around the city by circa 100 strong men. 

The first Macchina was organized in 1258, when the body of Santa Rosa was transferred from the Church of Santa Maria in Poggio to the Church dedicated to her by order of Pope Alexander IV. Since then every year this event is celebrated to commemorate the day. So September 3rd is a very important day for all the people of Viterbo and for the curious tourists.

If you want to know more and you are in Italy go and have a visit to Viterbo, the Macchina is tonight at 9pm.

More information in Italian from:

Friday, September 2, 2011

Palazzo Davanzati in Florence - a different museum

Imagine a different day in Florence! You want to escape the crowd and the confusion of the city center, where to go? what to do? i have an idea...go and visit Palazzo Davanzati.

In the past this palace belonged to the Davizzi family, wealthy merchants in the late fourteenth century. They constructed the palace, which later was purchased by the Davanzati family in the late sixteenth century.

This palace brings you back in time, show you the structure of what the modern palaces are going to be, so don't miss this place next time you are in Florence!!!

Palazzo Davanzati

Palazzo Davanzati

Address:  Via Porta Rossa 13 – Firenze – Tel. 055 2388610
Hours: Weekdays: 8.15 am – 1.50 pm; open second and fourth Monday of the month.
Holidays: 8.15 – 1.50 pm – open first, third and fifth Sunday of the month.
Closed on: the second and fourth Sunday of the month; the first, third and fifth Monday of every month. December 25, January 1, May 1
A presto!!

Questioning Pietro da Cortona in the Johnston Collection?

The Johnston Collection is a secret place  in the east side of Melbourne.

If you decide to visit this place in order to prevent disturbing the neighborhood, a tour parties come to collect you at a Melbourne hotel and you are transported to the house where the Collection is on show, in a bus that belongs to the Johnston Collection.

The Collection is the work of one man, William Johnston, who died in 1986, leaving everything to a Trust, who delegate professional staff looking after the Collection.

Pietro da Cortona (in the manner)
Presentation of Christ Child , 1635
The Johnston Collection

The Collection is made up of paintings, antiques, curiosities and several different pieces that represent the various passions of this man, who loved beautiful things ad collected them.

Between these works there is a painting, subject of my lecture in late May and now an article recently published on The World of Antiques & Art (Issue 81). 

In the past this work was attributed to Pietro da Cortona, but I have my doubts! 
So if you want to know more, get the magazine and go on page 84.

Note: If you like Pietro da Cortona and you want to see some of his most famous ceiling works, go to visit Palazzo Barberini in Rome and Palazzo Pitti in Florence.

Buona lettura!!

A presto!


Thursday, September 1, 2011

Renaissance at the National Gallery of Australia

Giovan Battista Moroni
Bambina della Famiglia Redetti, 1566-70

Next December a new exhibition will be on display at the National Gallery of Australia: "Renaissance: Raphael, Botticelli, Titian, Bellini". 

The works of these artists and other eminent artists executed by Italian artists between the 15th and 16th century will come to Australia for the first time.

These works, now part of the collection of the Accademia Carra, where once own by the merchant and collector Giacomo Carrara, who died in 1796. Until recently the collection was looked after by a Trust, to then pass under the jurisdiction of the city of Bergamo, that amplified the collection, thanks to gifts and donations of other private collectors.

Today in the Collection is possible to count more than 1,800 artworks, including masterworks by Giovanni Bellini, Titian, Botticelli and Raphael.

Madonna with Child, 1510
                                                                                     Due to restructuring/maintenance of the Accademia Carrara, around seventy artworks will be borrowed by the National Gallery of Australia and they will be on display for the first time on the Australian sole. 

This occasion will be a wonderful opportunity for art lovers, researchers and public, who will see with their own eyes works that hardly leave Italy due their fragility, value and conservation concern. 

Between the many works, there will also be the "Madonna and Child" by Titian, which will travel so far to come to Australia in December for about 4 months. 

Don't miss this occasion... go and enjoy this event! 

A presto!!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Another Italian masterpiece at the National Gallery of Victoria

Correggio at the NGV

This year the National Gallery of Victoria celebrates its 150th anniversary. What a magnificent present for all the art lovers... another wonderful Italian masterpiece has been added to the collection...that is fantastic!!

I will certainly take the time to go and have a look to this work!

Regarded as one of the prominent artists of the High Renaissance together with Michelangelo, Leonardo and Raphael, Correggio is well re-known for the fresco ceiling he decorated in Parma, such as the Assumption of the Virgin for the Cathedral.

Assumption of the Virgin by Correggio

This work was clearly a catalyst and inspirational example for the sotto in su technique later used by the painters of the Baroque period, such as Lanfranco's Assumption in Santa Andrea della Valle in Rome.

Correggio was a precursor and innovative artist, an example for many other artists, so well done Melbourne!

A presto!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Vicolo del Cedro

In the heart of Trastevere, Rione XIII, not far from Santa Maria in Trastevere.

on Vicolo del Cedro
From Vicolo del Cedro you can easily reach the Janiculum Hill, the steps are a short cut and I like to walk along there with my son, who loves to stop and drink in one of the old Roman public "fontanelle"

Lorenzo in Vicolo del Cedro

So maybe next time you are in Rome, take a short cut and have a look around the back streets of Trastevere!

A presto!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

La notte di San Lorenzo

Notte di San Lorenzo

Each year on the night of August 10th, Italians turn their eyes towards the sky hoping to spot a shooting star. 

This night is, in fact, since ever, dedicated to the martyrdom of San Lorenzo, who is buried since the third century in the homonymous basilica in Rome. The shooting stars represent the tears poured by the saint while dying on August 10th - it seems all those tears wander around  the sky all the year, until when on this night, shooting stars appear creating a magic and fantastic atmosphere

On this night, in fact, it seems that all your dreams come true, if you spot a shooting star and recite the nursery rhyme "Stella, mia bella stella, desidero che.." (Star, my beautiful star, I wish).....

So, if you didn't know that, this is something to celebrate next year....

Today was even my son Lorenzo "onomastico" - saint.
Tanti auguri amore di mamma!!

Lorenzo in Rome by Simona
A presto!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Pietro da Cortona: the Rape of the Sabine Women

The Rape of the Sabine Women
Oil on canvas, 280,5 x 426 cm
Pinacoteca Capitolina, Rome

Pietro da Cortona again!!! The subject of my Master thesis when I was still in Auckland.
The Rape of the Sabine Women is a subject well known and practiced by many artists, included Pietro da Cortona, who received the commission by the Sacchetti family. This painting, today in the Pinacoteca Capitolina, was executed by the artist before the Triumph of Divine Providence for the Barberini Family in the Palazzo Barberini in Rome.

If you have occasion to visit Rome, don't forget to stop and admire this artwork in the Pinacoteca Capitolina at the top of the Campidoglio!

A presto!!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Rome: ruins, forum, Italian language

Forum by Simona

Forum by Simona

What a beautiful thing...going to Rome and see the Forum, walking along the old Roman ruins with some friends or by your own. Why not enjoy this especially when the season is so warm?

So if you are planning your holiday in September or October learn some intensive Italian in the next few weeks in Brisbane.

Just get in touch!!

0414 262 782

Monday, August 1, 2011

Il Banchetto di Cleopatra

The Banquet of Cleopatra by Tiepolo at the NGV (part.)
image by Simona 
It is the work which for excellence represent the good life, the passion for beautiful things and the joy for life!!! The Banquet of Cleopatra by Tiepolo at the National Gallery of Victoria is there for next time you are in Melbourne go, enjoy and admire this work, as many other beautiful artworks in the gallery!!

Connect with Italy - there at the NGV!!!

A presto!!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Piazza di Pietra

Piazza di Pietra by Simona

Between the Pantheon and Via del Corso, you come across a narrow square, Piazza di Pietra, which refers to the imposing columns of a temple to Emperor Hadrian built in 144 AD by his successor Antoninus Pius. 

During the various centuries the building has been incorporated into a large building to later house the central Customs Office (Dogana di Terra) for goods which reached Rome by land. 

Today the building belongs to the Roman Chamber of Commerce.  

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Saturday, July 9, 2011


A new course at New Farm State School !!

FETE's Day 2011: New Farm State School in Brisbane

Every second year New Farm State School organize the Fete. This is the Fete's Day was celebrated on 19 June 2011 and everyone from the school participated in a different way. 

I did lots of photos!! Here just some of them!! We had games, stands, cakes, coffee, and much much more....Have a look!!



kids watching games

some wonderful cards

all the kids at school participated to create this artwork!

little plants


some helpers

the principal


children art

children art

children art

children art

children art

children art

children art

                                                                     Tony and Lyn

                                                               on the horse

                                                                with the animals

                                                                    more animals

                                                                       let me look!

                                                                                 how cute!

                                                           and more games

                                                                     more pets

                                                                        I am here too!

                                                   cake boxes decorated by kids

                                                                   more boxes

                                                                  more music

                                                                  jam in the hall


                                                                        I need a coffee!!


                                                                       more cakes

                                                   look how yummy they are!
                                                                 more more cakes

                                                   you could cut even your hair today!

Thanks Kate!

                                                                    and there was even face painting



                                                        more cakes and tea room

                                                                 books and music

people around

                                                         and what do you think of this?

                                                                         craft and more...

                                                   at the table to do some artworks

                                                      and finally something fun...

                                                                          and joyful!!!

It was a lovely day and everyone enjoyed!!

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