Wanna know why I wasn’t posting for two weeks? Well, as well as prepping for workshops I was also off finding inspiration in Florence. I thought I’d give you some little snapshots/flavours of Florence that reignited my creativity.
I first visited Florence when I was an Art History student at the University of Essex. It was actually a compulsory part of the degree course (in those free education, pre-fee days) and it was a real eye opener for me academically and artistically.
The above image is of San Spirito – inside is a triumph of architecture, every time I visit I’m in awe of its almost minimalist elegance. I also love the fact that the church is unadorned on the outside, simply beautiful inside and out.
Touristy as it sounds I love the cathederal (Santa Maria del Fiore above) square with the bell tower, the Duomo etc. Although the facade is a bit bling I adore the sparkly marble and the ostentatious pomp of it although I’m sure the purists would disagree. To me the buildings seem to gleam in any weather.
The place that most inspired me on my initial visit was the Laurentian Library (Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana) planned and built by Michelangelo. It was my mission this time to show Dr B. The library has been a source of inspiration for artists such as Rothko and film maker Orson Wells. It truly is break taking and iconic. The entrance I believe is ahead of its time, I genuinely think it’s the foundation of minimalism and Michelangelo’s finest work. My visit this year didn’t disappoint, it was more breath-taking than I remember.
Oh and don’t you love the floor in the library?
I also saw a new thing in Florence this visit (well a new old thing). The Brancacci Chapel was being restored when I visited originally and for some reason we didn’t make it there on my second visit so this was third time lucky. All I’m saying is I had a little cry when finally faced with it after spending uni lectures and reading so many books on it. Nothing could compare with actually experiencing it and at such close proximity too. The Brancacci Chapel is actually painted by three artists, originally Masolino and Masaccio then completed by Filiippino Lippi. This journey through the Renaissance painting was just what I needed to reinvigorate my art practice. Although my work isn’t obviously this kinda style, the whole visit, the architecture, the paintings, the stories behind every commission and fresco has spurred me on to explore some themes further and keep pushing.