Tartuca contrada Museum

Exploring the many layers of history, traditions, and symbolism, we visited the museum of the Tartuca contrada. Each of Siena’s 17 contrade have a museum dedicated to their neighbourhood’s proud traditions and regalia from previous Palio races, an amazing network of micro-communities within the city center, which makes Siena a truly unique place.

Planting winter crops

We’ve been worknig under the guidance of our faculty member Bernardo Giorgi to plant winter crops in our garden following sustainable permaculture practices.  Our plants include leeks, cabbages, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots and more!  We’re very grateful to everyone who is lending a hand with this work, including our students, teachers, staff, and community members!

Eterno Presente 2020 event at the Pinacoteca Museum

Footage from the Eterno Presente event at the Pinacoteca Museum, Sept 26 2020

Il progetto Eterno Presente, finanziato da Fondazione MPS, ha offerto un evento realizzato dalla Pinacoteca Nazionale di Siena in collaborazione con Siena Art Institute e Istituto Rinaldo Franci, presentando al pubblico senese un insieme di appuntamenti all’interno delle sale della Pinacoteca: lettura poetica di Donna Stonecipher, artista in residenza presso SART, contributi musicali a cura dell’Istituto Franci ed esercitazioni artistiche a cura di SART. L’iniziativa si è svolta in occasione delle Giornate Europee del Patrimonio 2020.

Viewing examples of artists’ books

For inspiration and context of our current “Guidebook” project, we looked at examples of a wide variety of artists’ books.

Some of the examples we looked in class:

Some other examples for additional reference: 

An interesting article from Gagosian magazine about the subject of libraries in contemporary art, including Anselm Kiefer’s “Census” which we looked at in class: https://gagosian.com/quarterly/2020/01/29/essay-libraries-cast-characters/


Archive of antique city maps of Sienahttps://www.ilpalio.org/piantaindice.htm
Archive of vintage postcards of Sienahttps://www.ilpalio.org/indice_foto_siena.htm

Visiting the Biblioteca Briganti

We had a chance to visit the Biblioteca Briganti, as well as touring the entire structure that it is a part of, the Museum Complex of Santa Maria della Scala, the former hospital. At the Briganti library, we were able to see examples of antique guidebooks as well as examples of contemporary artists’ books (both catalogues as well as artworks in the form of books). A true treasure trove!

Excursion to San Gimignano

We took a trip to San Gimignano to attend the opening of three contemporary art exhibitions at Galleria Continua as well as the site-specific outdoor work organized by the Arte All’Arte organization, and enjoying the medieval architecture of the city center and scenic landscape of the surrounding territory. 

Some info on the exhibits we saw:

Daniel Buren previous workDaniel Buren biography

JR previous workJR biography

Michelangelo Pistoletto previous workMichelangelo Pistoletto biography

Here is a video about JR’s “Omelia Contadina” 

Here is a video from previous work by Daniel Buren: 

Here is a video from previous work by Michelangelo Pistoletto:


Here is a drone view of San Gimignano, offering a glimpse of the location: