• The Birth of Venus by Botticelli

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  • Battle of San Romano by Paolo Uccello

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  • Adoration of the Magi by Gentile da Fabriano

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Walk Description

Created especially for our younger art enthusiasts, our Arte Firenze for Families walk acts as a primer to the rich collection of the Uffizi Gallery and to Florentine art and history, in general. The Uffizi is, perhaps, the best museum in the world in terms of its collection of Renaissance art, thus it will be an excellent text for our immersion into the art and culture of the time period. We will pair your family with an art historian, trained in an interactive inquiry-based learning technique, who will bring the collection to life, making what might be the kids' first museum experience both fun and informative.

We start our time together with a short introduction in Piazza della Signoria, discussing the Uffizi's structure and its relation to Palazzo Vecchio, Florence's town hall, and the importance of the Medici family. After spending some time outside the museum, we will then continue on to the museum, where we will spend roughly two hours exploring the collection.

Focusing on recurring subjects, themes and symbols, the historical background in which the works were created and biographical information about the artists, themselves, the docent will be able to construct an engrossing dialogue with the children about the art; how, why and by whom it was created. This will create an atmosphere of exploration and participation which will encourage investigation and interaction. By the end of the walk, the children will have a very clear idea of how and why art is created and will be able to better appreciate the artwork they will encounter throughout their trip.

In order to plan the best possible experience for your children, it would be helpful for us know some background. Have they traveled to other countries in the past? If so, where? Have they studied any subjects in school that would relate to the walk? Are they interested in art, music, even food! The more you can tell us, the better.

Due to the very interactive nature of this program and given the educational environment our docent aim to evoke, we adhere to a very strict maximum of 6 participants. Groups larger than 6 will need to book two separate walks that can run concurrently, but with different docents.

Duration: 2.5 hours
Category: Family Program
Venues: Uffizi Gallery
Additional Costs:
  • Uffizi Gallery Ticket - $17

    Each participant will be pre-charged for an entry ticket and reservation to the Uffizi Gallery.

  • Uffizi Gallery Ticket, Free - $0

    Children under 6 years old are allowed free entry to the Uffizi Gallery.

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    Kristin Stasiowski

    Kristin Stasiowski, Ph.D. is the Director of International Programs and Education Abroad for the College of Arts and Sciences at Kent State University and is also an Assistant Professor of Italian Language and Literature in the Department of Modern and Classical Languages. She received her Ph.D from Yale University in Italian Language and Literature and has taught Italian language, literature, cinema, history and culture in both the United States and Italy prior to arriving at Kent State where her current responsibilities are focused on promoting study abroad opportunities to undergraduates. Kristin has been with Context since 2007 and regularly leads a variety of walks including Dante's Florence and the Siena Half Day walk.

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    Cornelia Danielson

    Cornelia has a PhD in art history from Columbia University and wrote her dissertation on Renaissance city planning. She is especially knowledgeable about Medici patronage. In addition to her research and teaching, Cornelia, a mother of a disabled child, runs an association dedicated to barrier-free travel in Florence and is author of "The Accessible Guide to Florence."

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    Monica Shenouda

    Monica completed her Ph.D in 2009 in history of art and architecture from the University of Virginia, specializing in the Italian Renaissance period. As a writer, she is interested in the literary culture of Florence as well as the city's art and architecture. Before coming to Florence, Monica lived in Rome, Venice, New York City, and Charlottesville, Virginia.

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    Elizabeth Butler

    Elizabeth recently received her MA in Florentine Renaissance art from Syracuse University in Florence. Her interests include women's history and women artists, particularly by women in convents. In addition to leading walks, she also lectures at various universities and institutions in Florence.

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    Valerie Niemeyer

    Valerie received her BA with distinction in art history and museology at the University of Florence, focusing on the Renaissance art market. Although German, Valerie was born and raised in Rome, making her eager to build bridges across different cultures. She also works for the educational department of the state museums in Florence, where her mission is to communicate art and culture as a means of understanding the visual signs that surround us.

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    elizabeth molina

    Elizabeth is originally from Massachusetts where she earned a BA and an MA in Art History. Living in Florence since 2007, she collaborates as a freelance educator at Foundation Palazzo Strozzi, and is currently completing her PhD in Art History at the Scuola Normale Superiore, Pisa.

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    Lucia Picchi

    Lucia Picchi grew up in Rome where she graduated in 2001 with a thesis on Roman fresco decoration, after which she took part in an internship at the Louvre. In Florence since 2003, she expanded her passion for drawings thanks to a student's grant at the Longhi Foundation of Art History. She has also continued building on her knowledge of minor arts with a Masters program at the University of Florence, and an additional license in wood restoration. In the last few years, Lucia has been strongly interested in the movement of artworks for temporary exhibitions.

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    Molly McIlwrath

    Molly holds an MA in Italian literature from the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she completed her PhD coursework and exams with a specialization in Renaissance and Early Modern periods. She spent a year in Venice as an undergraduate while at the University of California-Santa Cruz and afterwards worked in Siena for two years for the University of California Education Abroad Program. She later went to graduate school and, after finishing her studies in Madison, found herself back in Venice once again for another year, this time conducting archival research for her doctoral dissertation. She has remained in Italy ever since, has taught courses in Renaissance history in Florence, and is a licensed tour guide of Florence and its province.

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    Helen Bayley

    Born in the UK, Helen moved to the USA to attend college. First the Rhode Island School of Design for her BFA in Painting and then Indiana University for graduate school. Helen remained in the USA for another twenty years teaching drawing and painting at college level, initially at Kansas City Art Institute and the last seven years teaching drawing at Tyler School of Art, Temple University in Philadelphia. During this time Helen exhibited her paintings in galleries across America including New York, Philadelphia, Washington D.C and Chicago. Helen continues to paint and exhibit and is currently represented by Gallerie Sparta, Beverly Hills.
    In Florence Helen is part of a cultural group "I Buontalenti" and her paintings can be seen as part of an annual cultural celebration of the patron Saint of Florence, Saint John the Baptist and at other venues.
    Helen has had a long term relationship with Florence and Italy; her first visit was as a study abroad student in Rome in 1987. Return visits ensued for teaching, fun and study, including a summer at The American Academy in Rome as a visiting artist/scholar and intensive summer workshops at The Florence Academy of Art. Helen is a licensed guide of Florence and the province of Florence and has made the city of Florence her home.

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    Maria Paola Maccallini

    Maria Paola Maccallini has worked in many state museums in Florence and is a specialized in the education. Her ambition is to communicate art and culture so that people can understand the visual signs around them. From 1995 to 1998 she was guide at the Museo dell’Opificio delle Pietre Dure (Precious Stones Museum) in Florence and in 1998 received her tour guide license for Florence and Fiesole. Maria Paola graduated from the University of Florence, where she was also a teaching assistant in the English department within the School of Political Science. Her career began as a high school teacher at public school where she developed her passion for education. The experience of writing her book “Il Matrimonio nell'Arte”, (Marriage in Art) and finally seeing it published, gave her even more enthusiasm for her job as a tour guide in the Florentine museums.

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    Chiara Mallardi

    Chiara was born and raised in Florence. She has approached art from many angles, first as a university student at the Academy of Fine Arts of Florence where she studied painting and sculpture.
    She also studied history of art, the psychology of art and cultural anthropology at graduate school. Her specialization was on Leonardo da Vinci and the Florentine Renaissance painters; how they interacted with the city, its people and its possible development in all respects.
    These many achievements have showed her how to share this culture and world with other people and to pass on her love for the beauty of Florence and its great stories.

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    Christina Mifsud

    Christina Mifsud, native of San Francisco, CA, studied art history as an undergraduate at Santa Clara University and holds a Master's degree in Florentine Renaissance Art History from Syracuse University. She has worked in Florence for over 20 years as an adjunct professor for several programs of higher education and as an authorized local tour guide has given tours for dignitaries in collaboration with the US Consulate in Florence and the US Embassy in Rome. She is currently on the Foundation at Loyola University of Chicago's Rome Program at the John Felice Rome Center where she studied in her junior year abroad. Mifsud enjoys giving family tours as her main interest is presenting the importance of the Florentine Renaissance to a varied audience with enthusiasm to express its relevance to our modern world today.

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    Cristina Mariani

    Cristina is a graduate of the University of Florence with a Master's Degree in Art History, focusing on 16th century Florentine Private Art Collections. She also attended the University of Florence Institute of Fine Arts, where she started a PHD on the history of paintings restoration.
    She is a long time lecturer and docent at New York University Villa La Pietra (Florence), on subjects such as the history of the Acton Art Collection and the history of the Italian formal Gardens.
    As a teacher and researcher, she has been collaborating with the Education Department at the Uffizi Gallery, Florence, for a long time.
    She is also a licensed tour guide for Florence, Prato, and Siena.
    Cristina is currently researching and studying the history of textiles and costumes, at the Lisio Arte della Seta Foundation in Florence, where she also works as a docent.