Past Italia: Brisighella


An unusual clock tower overlooks the land surrounding a small town in the province of Ravenna… What is now the Torre dell’Orologio of Brisighella was originally built in 1290 under the orders of the condottiero Maghinardo Pagani as part of the town’s (nominally) defensive fortifications. Damaged and reconstructed several times, the tower we see today […]

Top Five: Old masters

Choosing from Italy’s long list of Renaissance artists is not an easy task. Here are five old masters whose exquisite, timeless works of art continue to amaze… 1 – Michelangelo (1475-1564) Near Arezzo, Caprese, Tuscany Born Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni, the legendary artist’s masterpieces are too numerous to mention, although his Statue of David, […]

San Giorgio – Past Italia!

If you visit Ascoli Piceno in the heart of Le Marche you’ll find a wealth of incredible religious artworks by a Renaissance artist who fell in love with the region This detail of San Giorgio is part of the stunning polyptych found  in the Holy Sacrament Chapel in the cathedral in Ascoli Piceno. The art is the […]

Grotesque Style

The term Grotesque derives from the caves, or grotte, where Renaissance builders unearthed this ancient form The Grotesque style was all the rage during the 1500s for both interiors and exteriors all over Italy. It continued to be so for the following two centuries. Nowadays, when the word is mentioned, negative images of unfortunate distorted […]

Top Five: Renaissance Art

The Italian Renaissance in the 15th century saw a flowering of new techniques in art. This week’s Top Five is a look at a few of the paintings that redrew the cultural map of Europe… 1. La gioconda Leonardo da Vinci Leonardo’s masterpiece is probably the most famous painting in the world, although it is […]

Titian Sees the Light

It would take Titian the generation following Giovanni Bellini to really exploit the full potential of oil. He digested the expertise of Bellini and then took it to another level.   Titian (Tiziano in Italian) was one of the greatest painters Venice ever produced – perhaps the greatest painter Venice ever produced. He was the […]

The First Medicis – Godfathers of the Renaissance

ITALIA! presents a special, in-depth Past Italia! as Freya Middleton explores the long-lasting influence of the Medici family… The Medici family is one of the most extraordinary families in Italian history. They wielded economic and political power in Florence and in Europe for three hundred years. They were one of the wealthiest families in Europe in […]