Working directly with distinguished Florentine artists in studio and conservatory settings, students studying the arts expand their knowledge and expertise through a combination of research, technical training and creative projects. Exposure to libraries, museums and private collections enhances this work.
Art on Paper
Swietlan Nicholas Kraczyna
This course is designed for students with an interest in drawing, painting and etching/print-making. Studio time and site visits offer opportunities to explore different facets of the visual arts such as still-life, figure-drawing, and self-portrait. One-on-one sessions with instructor help students monitor personal growth and develop strength. Students keep a sketchbook with daily entries and work on more detailed and specific projects in the studio. In the second semester focus shifts to print-making/etching, culminating in an individual project to be displayed at Sarah Lawrence's year-end exhibition.
The course will provide students with the opportunity to experiment with different photographic techniques and ultimately lead them to defining their own approach within the contemporary photographic movement. Students explore different possibilities in photography through various assignments that include focusing on interiors, portraits, street photography, urban and social landscape, self-portrait, landscape, and staged photography. Issues involving image production, techniques, and expressive languages will be explored by studying the History of Photography and the works of master photographers. By the end of the semester, students will have developed a personal photographic project. All courses are taught at the Marangoni studios in Florence.
Art Restoration (An Arts Elective)
The Art Restoration course is designed for students with a background in Art History and is taught both at the program palazzo and at one of the main restoration labs in Florence. The course includes visits to art exhibits in and around Florence.
The course is structured so as to emphasize interaction between theoretical information and practical experience, especially regarding materials and methods. A further aim of the study is the acquisition of specific technical terminology both in English and Italian. The course offers a solid understanding of the artistic techniques typical of the Tuscan-Florentine ambience, particularly for the period from the 14th century through the Renaissance: physical and chemical composition of objects relative to each of the techniques treated, the historical evolution and development of these techniques, their conservation and restoration, including scientific methods of diagnosis and examination of works of art. The course concentrates on painting (fresco and other types of wall painting during the first trimester, painting on wood panel during the second, and on canvas during the third); other techniques (objects made of wood, stone, metal, paper, parchment, etc.) will be studied in a more general form, emphasizing the fundamental guidelines and approach to their understanding and treatment, methods which the student will be expected to use as a basis for an individual research project.
Lessons in the studio will involve each of the students in a personal project, through the realization of a simple example derived from a l4th/l5th century original, for each of the basic techniques treated. The purpose of this project is to familiarize the student with the structure and material composition of the works of art, fundamental for the comprehension of phenomena of deterioration and damage and subsequent restoration. When possible, the students will participate directly in certain of the basic operations, in order to gain familiarity with the tools and methods involved, as well as to form a correct awareness of the critical approach required for modern conservation.
Qualified students with a background in music may elect to study music as one-third of their program. The highly regarded music program offers conservatory study at all levels. Music students take private lessons in voice or an instrument, and study solfege, theory and composition at the Scuola di Musica di Fiesole and the Scuola di Musica di Sesto Fiorentino (classical) or the Centro Attvità Musicali (CAM) and the Scuola di Musica di Scandicci (jazz). Students may also join a performance group. For more about studying music in Florence, see International Programs in Music.