Professor Anthony Viscardi was selected as the 2013/14 SAI Faculty Fellow in Florence. The Faculty Fellows Program recognizes faculty from SAI’s U.S. affiliate colleges and universities who are engaged in scholarship activities that promote global awareness, and deepen the understanding of the arts and sciences. In the following blog entry, Professor Viscardi shares some of his experiences living and working in Florence. To learn more about this program, click here.
July 7, 2012
It has been only one week since I arrived in Florence to begin my SAI faculty fellowship. Already, my days are passing too quickly, without enough time spent revering in “Il dolce far niente,” translated, “the sweetness of doing nothing.” I wander the city daily in search of scenes to sketch. For the price of a coffee or a glass of wine, I’m welcomed to occupy a café table as long as I wish. The good manners of Italian waiters never make one feel that they must clear the table for the next customer. The bill is not delivered until requested. And so I sit and sketch, assimilating into the cityscape and feeling more and more like a local everyday…I wish.
Out the window of my apartment, I see my neighbor, the Bargello National Museum. To the left, the tower of the Palazzo Vecchio. With minutes, I am at the Uffizi galleries, the Duomo, and other great monuments, art, and history. Being so surrounded these treasures that infuse ones being and spirit will profoundly effect my creative work, as will my moments walking and drawing.
Since I’m here on a visual journey, enough of words, enjoy my sketches, a visual journal of my hours and days. In addition to the scene, each drawing records, in my memory, the sounds and scents of the moment and the brief interactions with people I encountered.
It is a remarkable gift to have this time to work while savoring the many flavors of the Italian movable feast. Thank you SAI! Thank you also, William Johnson, for introducing me to the Florence based SAI staff and for our pleasant lunch meeting. I felt an immediate “simpatico.”
Grazie Tante SAI