Are you interested in art history, culture, and creating your own art?
September 16th-23nd 2018
The NWAC team is creating an accessible, authentic experience for you in Tuscany, off the beaten path, and among new friends. For anyone who’s dreamed about painting from their own “room with a view,” this will be a trip you’ll never forget!
Highlights of our Italian art getaway include:
- Accommodations at the stunning Villa Pepi, a 500-year-old, family-owned villa, situated in the pastoral Chianti countryside
- Intimate art classes where you can reveal your own artist’s eye of Tuscany
- A day trip to Florence to see highlights of one of the world’s premier art history capitals
- Guided tours of exceptional vineyards and artists’ workshops
- A gentle weeklong schedule that will give you plenty of room to rest and explore independently
Embrace the beauty and charm of Tuscany in this authentic Renaissance era Tuscan villa. Your senses will be heightened and your imagination will soar in this amazing time capsule. This authentic 500-year-old Villa links the Pepi family to the days of Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci, when Ilaria Pepi’s family built the estate on acres of lush gardens with panoramic views. Connect with the history of Tuscany in this rustic Italian villa, while we draw, paint with acrylic and watercolor paints, and photograph, while feasting on Italian food and wine from the nearby Chianti region. The house sits high on a hill in the rural Arno Valley and, although it is only 24 km (15 miles) from Florence’s historical centre it enjoys commanding views over the surrounding Tuscan countryside.
Leading a creative retreat to Italy has been a dream of mine for many years. – Susan Jenkins
This will be my fifth trip to Italy. I’m so excited to share this experience for the first time with a group as a way to deepen our memories, exploring and creating together. Traveling to a new land increases pleasure in simple things: food, wine, the changing light. Our senses are no longer dulled by habit. Slowing down, we see and observe as artists, appreciating life with greater intensity, savoring texture, pattern, color and light. We’ll flirt with Florence and wander in a vineyard. At our charming, authentic and rustic villa we’ll paint and draw, sharing our work and creative activities in the evenings with laughter and conviviality.
The art center is also working to offer art classes from local Italian artists and local art gallery and artist studio tours. Stay tuned for more details.
Local Field Trips
We are working to schedule unique local field trip hosts exploring the region, tasting wine and meeting local artists.
Here’s a planned field trip. Stay tuned for more field trip options.
Dyeing with wine and wine tasting in Pescia
Tommaso Cecchi de’ Rossi studied agronomy at university in preparation for taking over the family vineyard and olive estate at Marzalla. During the grape harvest he accidentally spilled vinaccia (grape skins and seeds left after pressing grapes) on a piece of leather and was fascinated by the resulting color. He started experimenting, finally patenting the method and designing his own collection of bags and sandals. Under his brand Cecchi de’ Rossi they appear at Paris Women’s Fashion Week. Enjoy the day at a wine dyeing workshop and Tommaso and his wife will organize the lunch, wine tour and tasting.
Details subject to change
Sunday Sept 16th: Arrival Dinner
Take the train out to Vigliano Rignano sull’Arno station from Florence or other arrival destinations.
Arrive by dinner at 5pm at the Villa – cocktails at 6 and dinner at 7
Transportation notes: We will pick you up at the train station Rigano when you arrive. Please make arrangements with us on your arrival time.
Sunday night cocktail hour and first dinner together at the Villa.
Monday 17th: Getting Settled at Villa Pepi & Watercolor Painting Class
Enjoy a relaxing day at the Villa, 3 meals at the villa, swim in the pool, relax, get over jet lag, take a nap.
There will be a watercolor or acrylic painting class at some point during the day.
Tuesday 18th: Morning Art Class and a Local Field Trip
Wake up to art with a sunrise photography walk and breakfast at Villa Pepi. Then explore water soluble pencils and a local afternoon field trip or enjoy swimming in the Villa Pepi pool. Dinner back at Villa – share your photos and art discussion after dinner.
Wednesday 19th: A Day in Florence
Starting at the Duomo enjoy a walking tour in the morning, 1-2 lunch together, then free afternoon where you can choose from a double decker ride bus around Florence, visit a museum, art gallery, eat the best gelato in Florence (yes we know the place), shop, whatever suits your fancy. Dinner back at the villa that night. Taking photos and drawing at the Bargello and the Michelangelo plaza and cemetery will be a couple highlights not to miss!
Thursday 20th: Morning Art and a Local Field Trip
Morning art at Villa and create a water color pastel piece from a photo you took in Florence the day before.
Afternoon half day field trip close by, dinner at Villa.
Friday 21st: Wine Dyeing and Tasting Field Trip
Dyeing with wine and wine tasting in Pescia field trip day and dinner back at the Villa.
Saturday 22nd: Paint Class & Choose Your Own Field Trip
Paint in the morning with acrylics.. then an afternoon outing your choice. Will you go back to Florence? or a train ride to other Tuscan destinations? It’s up to you. We will provide suggestions if you need assistance planning your outing or team up with other guests this day for a spontaneous adventure. Please return back to the Villa for our farewell dinner.
Sunday 23rd: Check out and Departure Day
Please let us know your departure plans so we can provide shuttle service to the train to depart on your way from Vigliano Rignano sull’Arno.
Pricing & Booking
The trip costs will include accommodations, most meals, transportation for field trips to wineries and Florence, and the art and photography classes. You will be responsible for airfare, travelers insurance, and other personal travel arrangements and expenses.
Villa Pepi Rooms (weekly cost includes cleaning fee)
1st Floor Rooms
(BOOKED) GUEST ROOM: 1 double bed (four posted bed) with ensuite bathroom (small bathtub) $600.00 for the week
(FULLY BOOKED) RED ROOM: 2 twin beds with ensuite bathroom (shower) each twin bed is $360.00 for the week.
(FULLY BOOKED) MASTER & AUNTY ROOM: 2 double beds in connected bedroom/s sharing 1 toilette and 1 large bathroom with large bath. Each double bed $560.00 for the week.
2nd Floor Rooms
FAMILY ROOM: 1 double bedroom $550.00 for the week.
(BOOKED) MIMMA ROOM: 2 twin beds. Each twin bed is $360.00 for the week.
(BOOKED) GREEN ROOM: 2 twin beds. Each twin bed is $360.00 for the week.
All 2nd floor rooms share a bathroom with shower.
Meals by chef at the villa: €45.00 or approximately $54.00 per meal.
DIY lunches and breakfasts may be an option or we can hire chef Stefania for all meals at the Villa.
You will be billed for the meals you enjoy at the Villa at check out.
Meals you will need to cover that will not served at the Villa: Lunch in Florence on Wednesday and possibly other afternoon field trip days, depending on your independent schedule.
Lunch is included in the cost of the Wine Dyeing and Tasting field trip on Friday.
$200.00 per person for entire retreat, $50.00 per class if you are local or just attending for one day/class. Classes will be taught using watercolor, watercolor pastels, acrylic and more.
Price includes some supplies. Price can be adjusted based on how many art classes you attend. Local guests can attend the art classes.
ART SUPPLIES TO BRING
This is a draft list, we will provide a final list on what to pack and what will be provided.
– travel sized water color paint set
– 3-5 water color brushes
– (optional) watercolor paper
– canvas board
– Some special materials will be provided.
1) Dyeing with wine and wine tasting in Pescia (driver pick up at Villa Pepi, materials, lunch and wine included) €245.00 or $295.00
2) A Day In Florence: price pending if we do an independent self guided group tour or with a guide. A guided tour for example: A half day tour (3 hours) focused on the Bargello will cost €300 euro $366.90 + admission tickets (€12 euro per person $14.68)
3) We will share updates regarding field trip options and costs. Please share what you want to explore in Florence or around the Villa Pepi, and we can provide some options and pricing.
YOUR ITALY HOSTS
Art Instructor: Susan Jenkins
Field Trip Coordinator & guide: Anne Becker
Lead Coordinator: Nadja Wilson, firstname.lastname@example.org, (425)381-9271
Villa Pepi Owner: Ilaria Pepi
Retreat Chef: Stefania Ceni
Local Specialist & Guide: Auria Bohn
Please note that because Northwest Art Center Italy Art Escape is limited to a small number of students, to allow for a more personable, intimate experience, our cancellation policy is in place to help guests and us alike work together sharing expenses that may arise from unexpected cancellations.
• Room Fee is non-refundable
• Room Fee, art class fee and field trip fees transferable to another attendee
• Full balance due by August 1st
• Cancellation requests submitted within 30 days of retreat date, 50% of total amount (less deposit/room fee) will be refunded.
• Within 14 days of your retreat: sorry but no refunds given, no exceptions.
We understand that no one books a trip like this with the intention of cancelling it, but unexpected events do occur, so please consider purchasing travel insurance (see below) and that it is your responsibility to read and understand our cancellation policies. Exceptions cannot be made for any reason, including weather, injury/illness, or personal emergencies. No refunds or credits for failure to attend or failure to complete the retreat, or for arriving late or leaving early. We recommend that you purchase your own travel insurance. We encourage you to purchase trip cancellation insurance in order that your trip fees will be covered should you or your family have a medical problem prior to your trip or while on the trip. Trip insurance should also be purchased to cover medical expenses in the event you have an accident while on the retreat. Most travel insurance must be purchased within 14 days of making your reservation. Northwest Art Center cannot be held responsible for any personal expenses, such as airline tickets due to changes in itineraries or retreat cancellations.
It is recommended to purchase travelers insurance.
Travel Insurance – Compare Trip Cancellation, Medical/Health, Baggage
Northwest Art Center and all persons involved in courses (herein after referred to as “AGENTS”) act only in capacity as AGENTS for the participant in all matters connected with travel, sight-seeing journeys and transportation, and as AGENTS hold themselves free of responsibility for any damage occasioned by any cause. AGENTS will not be responsible for any damages or expenses or inconveniences caused by late departures or change of schedule, strikes or to their conditions, nor will be responsible for loss or damage to baggage or any of the participant’s belongings. All prices quoted are correct at time of printing, include the cost of operation of the journeys, and are subject to currency changes. AGENTS shall not be responsible for personal injury, death, accident, delay, loss, damage, irregularity or property damage as a result of force majeure or for any other losses or damages incurred by any person or journey participants caused by any delay or change of itinerary or arising out of any act, including, but not limited to, any act of negligence, any person acting for or on behalf of AGENTS for transportation, accommodation or sight-seeing provider or any other person or entity rendering any of these services or accommodations being offered in connection with this journey. This agreement supersedes all previous oral or written communications, representations, or agreements between the parties. Participants assume the risk involved when participating in a painting/photography course, foreign travel, and any and all activities and/or pursuits voluntarily undertaken while participating in the retreat. Participants agree that any and all disputes between Participants and Northwest Art Center shall be governed by United States Law. Participants agree to mediate any and all disputes prior to the institution of any litigation. In regard to the stay during the art course, AGENTS will provide safe, careful instruction and safe premises, but ask that each participant to take personal responsibility for their own self-care and (in the unlikely case) for any injuries incurred during a course. Modifications are given to students with specific needs. If participants are unsure of their physical ability due to previous injuries, they should seek the advise of a healthcare practitioner beforehand.