Itinerary: Orvieto, Italy Mosaic Retreat

3 Oct

What, When & Where!

Sunday, May 12, 2013
Arrive in Orvieto, Settle in, Welcome Dinner

Monday, May 13
Orvieto from the Inside Out
We’ll start our journey getting up close and personal with our host city. We’ll tour the convent, walk into town to get our bearings, get a cappuccino fix in one of the many cafes, tour the majestic Cathedral with a local guide, and pinpoint the best shopping and strolling streets for later excursions. Back at the convent, we’ll enjoy lunch made by the resident nuns, followed by an olive oil and wine tasting to get our palates ready for Italy. In the afternoon, we’ll take an historical look at Orvieto from the Etruscans onward — a 3,000 year journey, give or take a decade.
Evening Studio Time
To get started, we’ll talk a bit about materials and technique; suggestions for photography and scavenging during our daily outings; lecture/demo on materials and tools; lecture/demo on texture. Dinner on your own or with the group; studio will be available for those who wish to get started.

Tuesday, May 14
Morning Studio Time
After breakfast we’ll jump right in with a talk about light in mosaic, followed by a morning walk and photography session. Back in the studio, we’ll demo converting photographs to designs suitable for mosaic, and begin preparing designs for the week. We’ll go over details for working in miniature and jump right in, with one-on-one time.
Afternoon Exploration: Cooking Class
This afternoon we’ll visit with a James Beard chef and prepare our dinner at his restaurant. A little cappuccino, a little wine, a lot of tasting all culminating in a typical Italian dinner compliments of our classmates and the restaurant staff. Always a highlight! After dinner, feel free to stroll a bit, hit the studio, or wind down at the convent.

Wednesday, May 15
Morning Studio Time
We’ll start with a lecture demo on choosing materials for your specific designs, followed by on-your-own and one-on-one time with Pam. Students are welcome to work in the studio or take their very portable works-in-progress to the garden, city wall, or a quiet spot in town.
Afternoon Exploration: Ancient Orvieto
Created especially for our workshop, we’ll spend this afternoon touring the Roman mosaics beneath At. Andrea Church, followed by a tour of the ancient Etruscan caves beneath Orvieto. Dinner on your own and studio time if desired.

Thursday, May 16
Morning Exploration: Market Day!
We’ll visit the weekly market after breakfast, and pick out the ingredients for a fresh fresh fresh picnic lunch.
Morning Studio Time
Walking back from the market, we’ll stop for cappuccino and talk about one of the most important topics in art: putting SOUL into your work. At the studio we’ll continue working or begin new pieces. And since there’s no better inspiration than the brilliance of fresh produce, we’ll talk about Color!
Afternoon Exploration: Orvieto Wines
An “off the rock” excursion to a local vineyard, where we’ll have learn about the wine-making process, followed by a sampling. Dinner on your own if you have room, and as always, studio time if you wish.

Friday, May 17
Studio Time
Pleine Air work as a group or on your own, adding finishing touches. Free time in Orvieto as desired.
Early Evening Reception
Student Show and Share Time followed by group dinner.

Saturday, May 18
Depart Orvieto for more on-your-own adventures!

*Workshop Notes: The Mosaic Workshop portion of this retreat may be used as a workshop as schedulued or as personal art retreat time at the student’s discretion. Students are welcome to use the studio on their own schedule and work as much or as little as they wish; sessions are not mandatory. Students also have the option of working entirely independently, but are always entitled to one-on-one time with the instructor as desired. Program cost remains the same whether used as a group workshop or private work art retreat time. Workshop is suitable for all levels and one-on-one time will be tailored to your experience, preferred materials, and mosaic style.

*Program Notes for Travel Companions: Our hosts Adventures in Italy provide a reduced-cost program for travel companions sharing your room but not participating in the mosaic workshop. Discover Orvieto includes all excursions and activities of the group, including meals outlined above. Information on Discover Orvieto is here.

For more information or clarification on any details, just email

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