TUSCANY As a traveller, I’ve found that specific experiences hold more allure under the curtain of night. Such was my arrival in Pisa, the ancient maritime city of Tuscany. The city’s enigmatic charm enveloped me as I stepped into the historic landscape, spotlighted by the leaning tower which was my first stop. I was so happy to tick the Pisa Tower off my list of monuments to see I had to revisit it again the following morning before setting off to Rosignano, in the province of Livorno.
Connecting with Local Artists
Boarding a train to Rosignano Solvay, the scenic journey was filled with the harmonious blend of nature that Tuscany effortlessly presents and eventually, we saw coastal views. Greeting me at the station, I met with artists Franca Frittelli and Ariberto Badaloni who invited us to their home in Vada, a treasure trove of art and culture, practically a museum. Their home is a masterpiece in itself and a testament to their creative aesthetic sense and nonconformist lifestyle.
Discovering “La Giunca”
Situated just past Rosignano Marittimo lies the entrancing La Giunca Sculpture Park. Tucked away in the verdant Tuscan hills, La Giunca unveils a creative fusion of nature and art that leaves visitors awe-struck and inspired. As night began to fall, I embarked on this adventure, eagerly anticipating the beauty that lay ahead. The park, born from the artistic genius of Franca Frittelli, houses over 30 dance-inspired sculptures from the ’90s, gracefully nestled amidst oaks, olive groves, and fruit trees. These installations, brought to life by Franca herself, unravel a ballet of forms and emotions crafted from various materials like marble, resin, stone, and wood.
Art & Nature
As the park is perched on a slight incline, every step accentuates the harmonious interplay between art and nature, offering distinct perspectives. This brilliant arrangement encourages visitors to delve deep into the artistry, appreciating the nuances of each sculpture’s shape and outline. The moonlight dancing on the surface of the artworks made them gleam, adding a mystical aura to the entire experience.
Day in the Life
A morning in the life of the sculpture park consists of coffee made in the self-built cabin. Franca and Ariberto assemble their newest sculpture “No Violenza” which had been created alongside Franca’s students, and put in the kiln, broken and transported back to the park which is then assembled in the stage area using plaster and all-weather sealant to fill in the cracks. In the afternoon we enjoyed the on sight pool and completed the day with a BBQ and shared meal before going to bed.
During our stay we had the chance to observe the latest work in progress for Franca Frittelli’s recent artwork against gender violence. It was beautiful to see all this energy and passion for art and activism together.
A holistic experience
My journey through Tuscany, punctuated by historical wonders, heartfelt connections, and unparalleled artistic expressions, was nothing short of magical. From the moonlit marvels of Pisa to the enchanting realms of “La Giunca” under the starry night, every moment has been etched into my memory. It is no wonder that Tuscany, with its rich tapestry of art, culture, and history, remains a beacon for travellers seeking soulful escapades.
Visiting La Giunca isn’t just about viewing sculptures; it’s about immersing oneself in a holistic experience where art and nature are intertwined. Whether you’re an art connoisseur, a nature lover, or someone seeking tranquillity and inspiration, La Giunca Sculpture Park offers an escape that can be found nowhere else.
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