Abbondanza Toscana

     

    2018 Program Schedule

    To read more about each course including a day-to-day itinerary,
    click the program title.

    We continue to schedule new programs for 2018.
    Check back with us regularly to see the latest additions.

    A Sketching and Painting Holiday with Nancy Thompson in Cortona. Nancy Thompson returns to Tuscany with her popular workshop and passion to help students develop their own artistic styles. This time she introduces you to Cortona, one of Italy's oldest cities, and the home of author Frances Mayes made famous in her book Under the Tuscan Sun. As a teacher for more than 20 years, Nancy has taken groups to Italy and Ireland to study sketching and painting (watercolor and acrylic). In this workshop you'll experience all the best that Tuscany and the surrounding area has to offer . . . Bramasole, the renovated villa and grounds Frances Mayes calls her Tuscan home; the laddered streets, churches, museums, restaurants and Cortona's central piazza that's a lively gathering spot for the locals; Siena with its iconic Piazza del Campo and its surrounding buildings including the Duomo; the Renaissance architecture of Pienza. Plus your time at our venue in a charming Tuscan setting with shady terraces overflowing with flowers and views of the countryside. You'll enjoy ten days of spirited exploration sketching and painting, exquisite food and wine and a bit of shopping. To learn more about Nancy's work and teaching, visit her website at www.nancyellenthompson.com.
    Dates: May 2- 12, 2018

    For the Artist in You, a Tuscan Experience with Artist Nancy Ellen Thompson in Support of the Art League of Ocean City, MD. As part of its art education program, the Art League travels to Tuscany with Maryland artist Nancy Thompson and her popular workshop to help students develop their own artistic styles. As a teacher for more than 20 years, Nancy has taken groups to Italy and Ireland to study sketching and painting (watercolor and acrylic). In this workshop you'll enjoy some of Tuscany's most endearing places and experiences including the walled city of Lucca with its narrow winding streets, private visits with local artists, the dramatic Ligurian coastline and the town of Portovenere on the beautiful Gulf of Poets, wine tastings and more.  Plus your time at our venue, Villa Fiori, provides an iconic Tuscan setting . . . stately cypress and shady tree-lined paths, red tile roofs of farmhouses, flower pots and gardens tumbling with roses and herbs, vignettes of rustic doors and colorful pottery. Ten days of sketching and painting and exploring, fabulous food, amazing wines and world class shopping. To learn more about Nancy's work and teaching, visit her website at www.nancyellenthompson.com.To learn more about the mission of the Art League of Ocean City, visit their website at www.artleagueofoceancity.org.
    Dates: May 16- 26, 2018

    Inspired by the Italian Lakes, A Painting Workshop with Sandra Kaplan. Sandra Kaplan is a long-time and much favored instructor at the Art Students League in Denver, CO where she teaches a variety of classes. Her primary goal is to help students develop their own distinct voice as they pursue expertise in technique. In addition to her classroom work, Sandra enjoys teaching small workshops where she tailors her instruction for each person's needs. You'll spend your time with Sandra exploring postcard perfect scenes in the Italian Lakes region. You'll visit some of the most beautiful towns on Lake Como and in the area. The flowered lakeside promenade in Como beckons with magnificent views of lake and mountains. In Bellagio, dubbed "the pearl of the lake," narrow streets and stately villas are ideal subject matter for your sketchbook. Nesso with its dramatic waterfall and the charming village of Montevecchia perched on a hillside are also waiting for your artistic interpretation. Our home for the workshop, Il Colombee, is a refursished farmhouse on sprawling grounds with stone pathways meant for exploring the gardens and terraces. You'll also experience exquisite food and wine and learn to cook some local dishes with help from our villa chef. Ten days of inspiration for your painting, your palate and your soul! To learn more about Sandra and her work, visit her website at www.sandrakaplan.com.
    Dates: May 30 - June 9, 2018

    Oui, Provence! A Provencal Workshop with Ratindra Das. Internationally recognized watercolor artist Ratindra Das welcomes artists of all levels to his workshop in Provence. He has taught workshops and seminars across the U.S., Mexico, Canada, Italy, Singapore and China and invites you to join him in exploring Provence where so many famed artists chose to live and create. You'll seek out some of the same venues that inspired Van Gogh and Cezanne and come to understand how the light, landscape and culture influenced their work . . . and their lives. Your home for the workshop is the beautiful La Bastide d'Odette, an authentic stone farmhouse in the small town of Saint Andiol. You'll be surrounded by a private park with handsomely landscaped grounds, paths and a shady courtyard. Excursions include the charming port town of Cassis perched above the Mediterranean on a rocky cliff, the historically important Arles where Van Gogh made his home and sought inspiration, the fashionable Aix-en-Provence where Cezanne's work evolved and one of France's Plus Beau Villages (beautiful villages), Les Baux de Provence where the sweeping views of the surrounding plains and the Rhone will take your breath away. Le gastronomie of Provence will also inspire you as you sample the regional cuisine and local wines. To learn more about Ratindra and his work, visit his website at www.RatindraDas.net
    Dates:September 5 - 15, 2018

    Encroyable Provence! A Painting Workshop with Nancy Chaboun. Nancy brings a sense of taste and elegance to the canvas inspired by her successful career in women's high fashion and her extensive travel on buying trips to France and Italy. She has been painting full time for the past 25 years after leaving the world of fashion and the visual merchandising and advertising she managed for four stores. Artists of all levels are inspired by her joyful approach to teaching. Her goal is to help artists develop their own style and voice as they expand and refine the skill sets needed to reach that personal level. During your time with Nancy, you'll explore painting venues around your home for the workshop, a French farmhouse near the small town of Saint Andiol. The stone farmhouse is surrounded by eight acres of landscaped grounds including a private park, gardens, paths and a large courtyard shaded by a stately old tree. Excursions include the historically important Arles, the small port town of Cassis, the lovely for strolling and painting Aix-en-Provence and the island village of L'isle-de-la-Sorgue. Nancy's workshops are based on having fun during the process of building a strong skill set. "I firmly believe that humor and camaraderie are important assets in the endeavor," she says. To learn more about Nancy and her work, visit her website at www.nancychabounfineart.com.
    Dates:September 19 - 29, 2018

    On y va! Let's go to Provence with Nancy Thompson. Nancy Thompson complements her popular Tuscany workshops with ten days in Provence. Join her in exploring this part of southern France that inspired so many great artists including Renoir, Picasso, Bonnard, Matisse and others whose works you'll see in the local museums and on neighborhood street corners. Visit the Musee Renoir and paint in the same gardens as the master. See Picasso's imposing mural, War and Peace, as well as some of his early ceramics works in the very village where he learned his craft. Shop the exclusive stores of St. Tropez and the extensive market in the old quarter. Dip your toes in the Mediterranean walking and painting some of the most beautiful beaches of the Cote d'Azur. Watch a glass-blowing demonstration by master craftsmen. Try the fresh seafood so central to Provencal cuisine and learn to prepare some typical dishes with our villa's French chef. You'll be charmed and inspired by all that Provence has to offer. As a teacher for more than 20 years, Nancy has a passion for helping students find their own style. She provides the fundamentals of sketching and painting (watercolor and acrylic) and works with each student in expressing a unique vision. To learn more about Nancy's work and teaching philosophy, visit her website at www.nancyellenthompson.com.
    Dates: October 3 - 13, 2018

    Inspired by Cortona, Paint with Katerina Ring. For plein air painting in oil, inspiration is in the air and in every breath you take in Tuscany. Katerina Ring invites you to join her in Cortona, her favorite Tuscan hilltown, to concentrate on technique, composition, form and fun! For those just beginning, she even provides for your use a starter kit of paints, tripod easel and a backpack for carrying everything as you explore the sights and senses of Tuscany. For those more experienced painters, they have the opportunity to exchange solutions and approaches discovered over their years of painting. Katerina recently returned from Zambia where she had been living, painting and teaching for the last ten years. She holds a U.S. passport and is a permanent resident of Italy. You'll find inspiration for your painting around our lodgings in Cortona chosen for their rustic charm and surroundings yet with all the modern conveniences you'd expect. Your stay in Cortona includes a guided tour of this former Etruscan city state and two of its most important museums, the Etruscan Museum and the Diocesan Museum where you'll see works by Luca Signorelli and Fra Angelico's inspiring, The Annunciation. You'll paint in the gardens of Bramasole, the home of Frances Mayes featured in her book Under the Tuscan Sun. You'll visit Le Celle where St. Francis of Assisi founded a monastery and lived. Excursions in the area include Pienza, famous for its pecorino cheese and iconic Tuscan landscapes; Montepulciano for a wine tasting of its famous Vino Nobile; and Castiglione del Lago, a lakeside fortress village where Hannibal and his elephants humbled the Romans. Ten remarkable days to enjoy painting, kinship with your fellow artists and the wonders of one of the most beautiful regions of Italy. Learn more about Katerina and her work at katring.com.
    Dates: October 17 - 27, 2018

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Brunch al fresco
under a shady pergola


The same Tuscan garden
from many perspectives
for this group of painters


Bees Amongst the Olives
by Katerina Ring

Pasta-making with our chef
is a highlight of every cooking class


A colorful view
of homes in Lucca


Prosciutto hanging in the butcher shop


Dinner in Chianti with a local wine


A quiet stroll among the cypress


Knives in the kitchen
waiting for a cooking lesson


Siena's Duomo
a Gothic masterpiece


Still life . . .
or limoncello


Colorful beehives
near a Tuscan vineyard


Our local baker joins us
for pizza night

 

 

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