Living the Renaissance Dream
  • Enrichment
  • History of Art

The 15 of us (including Miss Lindsay and Miss Monteil) had been anticipating the trip for weeks, especially after our personalised trip bucket hats arrived! We all met on Saturday morning to fly to Rome, which was stress free until Izzy B realised she had left her passport on the plane! Nevertheless, after some sprinting, she managed to retrieve it and we could begin our trip, travelling to our hotel in the centre of Rome where we met with Holly, our amazing guide. There was little time to settle in with only one night in Rome, so after a quick panino we raced to the Vatican. It was wonderful to finally see in the flesh the antique sculptures that had so inspired Michelangelo, and of course, the Sistine Chapel Ceiling was a particular highlight. Despite photos not being allowed in there, we snuck a secret group selfie with the amazing frescoes and then headed down into St Peter’s Basilica. Being in the Bernini designed piazza whilst the sun was starting to set was an amazing experience. The next 24 hours in Rome brought a jam-packed itinerary with a visit to the Pantheon (Miss Lindsay’s fave space in the world), The Tempietto and even a late night walk to throw our coins into the Trevi Fountain. Then it was time to get the train to Florence and levels of excitement were high at seeing the much anticipated ‘David’. The sculpture’s immense level of detail and astonishing size is something we will never forget. In the Uffizi we were able to track the development of Renaissance painting and practice our visual analysis skills whilst also seeing so many of our A level case studies, including Gentile da Fabriano’s ‘Adoration of the Magi’ and Botticelli’s ‘La Primavera’. Seeing Masolino’s and Masaccio’s work at the Brancacci Chapel (considered to be the Sistine Chapel of the early Renaissance) was another highpoint and also visiting the church of Santa Maria Novella to see Masaccio’s ‘Holy Trinity’. Here, we really got a sense of why people believed this chapel to be real when it was first presented, providing a wonderful example of the development of perspective. The legendary panino bar kept us very well fed and energised whilst in Florence, which was needed for our early morning climb of the Duomo and the evening walk up to San Miniato al Monte – both of which gave us incredible panoramic views of the city and surrounding countryside. We drew the landscape that evening in the sunset (with mixed results!), before having a huge final group dinner of pizza and playing ‘ninja’ and other games in the Piazza Pitti.  

We had such an incredible four days walking in the sun, living the Italian lifestyle, eating gelato and studying first-hand so many of our A level Renaissance case studies. It was an unforgettable trip and the last for many of us in Upper Sixth. We flew back on Tuesday evening after another busy day, and yet another stressful flight back when Izzy B left her passport on the plane AGAIN, but all was okay in the end. Thank you so much to Miss Lindsay, Miss Monteil and Holly for making it such an amazing trip.

By Niamh (UVID)

  • LEH History of Art