A quick weekend break in Florence for a change of scenery and to jiggle the creative juices.
Excited! On the train from Pisa to Florence
Nice Type in Florence Station
We dived straight in by going to the Uffizzi, slightly spaced out from our 4 am start. The main attraction for me being Botticelli’s Venus and Primavera.
It took a bit of adjusting being in such a tourist trap, it seemed every other person on the street was American and the city reverberated with the noise of trundling suitcases. Every spare bit of pavement had stalls selling brightly coloured leather goods and blankets laid out with wares. Tall, handsome, young Africans, suddenly sprinting through the streets to avoid the police, with counterfeit Louis Vuitton and Prada bags over their shoulders.
At the other end of the scale, Via Roma and it’s unwelcoming designer stores, although Luisa Via Roma, a former Pazuki stockist, had a much more friendly, accessible feel.
I’m glad we saw Benvenuto Cellini’s beautiful Perseus or we might have believed the one in Terry Gilliam’s opera at the ENO was the true size, it was a gigantic blow up!
I became strangely obsessed by the old fashioned brass door bells and the resident’s names. Also the many tangles of multi-coloured battered bicycles.
The beautiful soft colours of Masaccio’s painting in the Brancacci chapel were everywhere in Florence – terracotta to plaster pink, pale yellow and verdegris.
We went home soaked in the Renaissance, with me dying to get back to Sarah Dunant’s Blood and Beauty about the Borgias, which was too huge to pack.