This year marks the bicentennial of U.S. diplomatic presence in Florence, making it the second oldest continuous U.S. diplomatic establishment in Italy—after Naples, where we set up shop in 1796. The terminology “diplomatic presence” is chosen deliberately, as over the last 200 years we have had many faces and roles. There have been 46 principal of...

Data from the Italian Statistical Yearbook 2018 outlines the dominance of cultural sites, monuments and museums in the central Italian regions of Lazio and Tuscany, especially in Rome and Florence. Just over 50 million people visited state museums, archaeological sites and monuments in 2017 across Italy. More than half of those were in the regions...

One of Italy's top art galleries has appealed to the German government for help in returning an artwork stolen by Nazi troops in 1943. The chief of the Uffizi Galleries in Florence, Eike Schmidt, released a video calling for the return of the painting, "Vase of Flowers," by 18th-century Dutch artist Jan van Huysum. Until the original is returned, a...

Just Google, “10 greatest geniuses of all times,” and it is highly likely that two of the names on that list will be Leonardo da Vinci and Galileo Galilei. Now, think about what you would do if you were put in charge of bringing their legacy into the 21st century, in all its complexity, as neither man can be reduced to one simple label, say “artist...

Michelangelo has left us amazing masterpieces, adored in the entire world: the Pietà, the iconic David, Moses, Laocoön, the unparalleled frescoes for the Sistine Chapel, and dozens of other works. Yet it is impossible for us to really know his private life, what he felt and lived as an artist and man of his time. Perhaps an interesting and little-k...

Important restoration work on Michelangelo’s funerary monument in the Church of Santa Croce in Florence has been completed and visitors can now admire the Monument to Michelangelo in all its glory. The restoration project, known as ‘In the Name of Michelangelo,’ was carried out by the Opera di Santa Croce, the non-profit organization that has been...

Certainly not lacking for cultural excellence, Italy is not only the cradle of Roman, Renaissance and Baroque art, but it also plays a rather important role in the international modern and contemporary art scenes. Museums, galleries, cultural institutions and the artists themselves are organized into collectives: art in Italy follows the flux of ev...

Entering the holiday season (which we Americans kicked off on November 22 with our Thanksgiving), perhaps you’re looking forward to some time with family and friends, some good food, and maybe even a long-awaited vacation. For many of my fellow citizens, this vacation will be a once-in-a-lifetime holiday to Florence or Tuscany. It’s also a time to...

We commenced our trip at the University of Gastronomic Sciences (UNISG) with an introduction to Slow Food and traditional Piedmontese food, moved to Turin for the incredible Salon del Gusto, trained to Genoa, and noshed and sipped our way through Liguria, Emilia-Romanga, and Tuscany. Carlo Petrini started the Slow Food movement in Italy in 1986 to...

In this piece I continue my backwards trajectory through my short list to land on a topic in the middle theme, culture and agriculture. Specifically, I focus on the extraordinary findings coming out of the Laboratorio Internazionale di Neurobiologia Vegetale (LINV), otherwise known as the International Laboratory of Plant Neurobiology, located in F...