The Florence Oltrarno Tour will introduce you to the left bank of the Arno river, the most typical and genuine part of Florence. Many craftsmen still have their shops here today. We will walk along the narrow streets near Ponte Vecchio and look up at the medieval towers that once crowded the city. A short walk and we will arrive to Santo Spirito district (the Holy Spirit), where we can’t miss the Augustinian Church of Santo Spirito, last creation by the Renaissance maestro Filippo Brunelleschi. To better appreciate the real essence of this “other Florence” we will see an artisan at work. Our second stop is San Frediano district and Santa Maria del Carmine Church, where we will discover the marvel of the Renaissance Brancacci Chapel. Eventually, we will head to San Niccolò district, one of the coolest neighborhoods of Florence. In particular, this area is known for its nice restaurants, artisans’ workshops and art studios. We can visit two of them. Abraham Clet is one of the most eclectic contemporary artists of Florence. Have you ever seen strange stickers on street signs? Another very interesting example of street art in Florence is Blub-Art knows how to swim. I’m sure you’ve noticed the posters pasted on the walls reproducing iconic paintings with snorkeling masks.
The Florence Oltrarno Tour continues with Santo Spirito Church was constructed over the ruins of an Augustinian convent from the 13th century and later destroyed by a fire. Filippo Brunelleschi designed the project for the new building around 1428. Construction was carried on by his colleagues after his death in 1446. The church has 38 magnificent side chapels, which contain a noteworthy amount of artworks (don’t worry, we will just see a couple of them!). When Michelangelo was seventeen years old, he could make anatomical studies on the corpses coming from the convent’s hospital in exchange for sculpting a wooden crucifix which was placed over the main altar. Today the crucifix is still here, in the octagonal sacristy. In this district we will also visit the workshop of an Oltrarno artisan (jewellery, paper, wooden inlay, depending on their availability) and we will make a toast with a deserved glass of wine at a local winery!
Our Florence Oltrarno Tour also includes the Brancacci Chapel was commissioned by Pietro Brancacci in 1386 in the Church of Santa Maria del Carmine. It’s sometimes called the “Sistine Chapel of the early Renaissance” for its painting cycle, among the most famous and beautiful of that period. Painted by three different artists, Masolino, Masaccio e Filippino Lippi, Masaccio is the one who makes a radical break from the medieval artistic tradition by adhering to the new Renaissance concept of space dominated by the geometrical perspective. After seeing the fresco technique on the walls of the Brancacci Chapel.