We’re on our way to Italy for, what has become, our yearly infusion!! We stay in the village of Pergine, south east of Florence in a lovely villa, appropriately named Casa di Vignolo, where we can sit on the porch and sip chianti and watch the Tuscan skies. Church bells, pigeon songs, and my husband’s coffee wake me every morning and we begin our days adventures. First is the daily shopping. We follow the village women to the baker, butcher and frutta/verdure to buy our days supplies, then, hit the road.
These visits allow me the time to pursue a newfound love…the art of Piero della Francesca. A famous 15th century geometrician, his art was only recently “discovered” by more than the few artists and art historians that had been inspired by him. His most famous fresco cycle resides in the church of San Francesco in Arezzo, only twenty minutes from our village. I have been so inspired that I am writing a book about him, and Tuscany and my adventures there over the past forty-five years. So I am able to do more research and photography while having all that Italian fun.
We visit the large cities famous for Renaissance artwork, Florence, Siena, but mostly we stay in the country and find the endless treasures that exist in small village museums and churches. We eat the wonderful Tuscan food, watch grapes and olives being harvested, and buy from the farmer at the foot of our hill. We drive the Chianti hills and see the seasons…visit the homes of Michelangelo, Giotto and da Vinci. We find out of the way restaurants with food fit for the duke that must have owned the castle on the hill, revel in the ubiquitous flowers in fields, wildly, or tamed in terra cotta pots.
I will return, inspired, with a head and heart full of beautiful imagery. Who knows where it will go…