Tag Archives: Art Tours

Italy with Maverick Mosaics

3 May

The Divine, The Diva, and The David: Italy with Maverick Mosaics
September 25 – October 4, 2015
$3,595 per Person, Double Occupancy

Experience the splendor and magic of Italy with Maverick Mosaics as we open doors for you to learn, create and laugh. Get ready to enjoy a rich and memorable week of mosaics, history, culture, great food, and hands-on art projects. From the Vatican to Niki de Saint Phalle’s Tarot Garden to the treasures of Florentine Art this will be an amazing one of a kind adventure.

Art Retreats ItalyOur trip will focus on mosaic art in the cities of Rome, Florence and the Tuscan region. Upon your arrival in Rome you will visit famous “must sees” including the Coliseum and Roman Square, but surely the highlight will be our private visit to the Vatican and its Mosaic Studio where mosaic artisans restore, create and fabricate mosaics for installation worldwide. We spend 3 days exploring Rome, visiting cathedrals, Basilica’s and archeological sites. A private classical Italian cooking class will top off our time in Rome and replace the calories you burned walking the city!

From Rome our private coach takes us through the Tuscan countryside to our first stop, the exotic sculpture garden of Niki de Saint Phalle. The Tarot Garden is comprised of several large-scale mosaic sculptures, and something you have to see to believe. While in this rural area you will have a unique “cowboy” lunch experience at a local family farm followed by a stop at the Saturnia Hot Springs. We travel on to explore the medieval towns of Siena and San Gimigano. You will visit the famous alabaster studio of Volterra where in this magical atmosphere we will watch artisans work with this luminescent and unique stone. It’s always a treat to visit mosaic artists, and the studio of Albo Mazzetti will open their doors to us. Albo has been creating masterworks for countless installations throughout the world for over 30 years and his Tuscan studio will be a memorable experience.

Art Retreats ItalyIn Florence we visit some must-sees including the Uffizi Gallery and Galleria dell’ Accademia, both outstanding collections of Renaissance masterpieces. And of course there will be time with “David” and time to take in the Florence Duomo Complex, which includes the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, Santa Reparata Excavation, the Florence Baptistery and the Museum of the Opera del Duomo.

Another studio visit, and an unforgettable experience, is a hands-on workshop at the artistic studio of the Masters Iacopo and Bruno Lastrucci guaranteed to satisfy lovers of mosaic and stone. We will learn about “Florentine commesso”, a particular kind of mosaic, developed in the 16th century in Florence. Pietra dura (literally, “hard stone”) and semi-precious stones are used in these designs. Only in Florence do the few great masters continue to produce works of art using the technique. Special tools are used and the craftsmanship is beyond compare.

Time will be included for you to leisurely discover the cafes and shops along Florence’s famous Ponte Vecchio.

Our Florence accommodations will be at Villa il Poggiale, a manor house just outside the city. After a long day of learning and exploring you can relax with a dip in the villa’s pool or savor a drink in the garden. We will have a gourmet meal prepared for us at the villa and dine like kings and queens in Italian splendor during our stay.

This trip is designed for adults and space is limited to ensure an intimate and personal experience.

Many of the adventures and excursions on Maverick trips are UNIQUE, one-of-a-kind opportunities with some components not available to the public. We offer hassle free travel, English speaking escorts and university educated guides, wonderful accommodations, and street-level cultural engagement anchored in the world of art and architecture. We plan on making keepsake art-work along the way in workshops lead by local artisans.

Maverick’s inaugural Art Camp trip to France in June 2013 and our recently completed adult adventure to Spain were amazing, thanks in large part to the expertise and planning of our travel and logistics partner A La Carte Travel. A La Carte Travel is this nation’s leader in exclusively providing educational institutions with affordable access to learning opportunities abroad, and Maverick Mosaics qualifies as an educational institution. Hassle free travel is paramount, ground transportation and transfers are included, no waiting in lines for scheduled tours and we have English speaking escorts and guides traveling with us. A La Carte Travel promotes the values of understanding the world we live in through experiencing and learning about different cultures. With over 18 years of experience organizing educational tours, A La Carte Travel is the perfect partner with Maverick Mosaics for this unique travel and learning adventure.

Click here for a detailed itinerary and to register. A La Carte Travel – Italy.

Cost is $3,595 per person. Price includes lodging, all admission fees, ground transportation, (workshops, cooking class, olive oil and wine tastings), full-time English-speaking escort, daily breakfast, special meals as described on detailed itinerary. Price also includes a special gourmet meal at the Tuscan Villa and a closing farewell dinner in Rome. Price does not include airfare and is based on double occupancy.

For anyone traveling from Washington, DC (Dulles Airport) we are researching group airfares that will be below market rate. If you are in the DC area, or wish to depart as a part of the DC group contact us.

Learn more about Bonnie here.

Learn more about Maverick Mosaics here.

Exploring France with Bonnie Fitzgerald and Maverick Mosaics

1 Feb

France: Back to the Future & Forward to the Past
with Bonnie Fitzgerald and Maverick Mosaics.
June 27 – July 6, 2015
$2,995 Double Occupancy
A 4 day add-on option available to explore Paris more deeply

Get ready to enjoy a rich and memorable week of history, culture, art through the ages, great food, hands-on art projects, and yes a little technology, as we explore humankind’s cultural past and a glimpse into our future.

Art RetreatsOur trip will focus on art and cultural achievements through the ages. You will visit the Perigord region of France (southwest) and go “forward to the past” as we experience some of the oldest know artistic expressions on earth, the famous Caves of Lascaux (Paleolithic-Stoneage). Continuing forward into the past we visit the Medieval fortified town of Carcassonne. Going “back to the future” we visit the contemporary art museum of Toulouse-Lautrec, the celebrated market of Sarlat and much more. There will be wine tastings, special meals and private and exclusive entry to archeological sites as we experience moments in art and culture spanning 17,000 years! Our trip begins and ends with time in Paris where we will lunch at the foot of the Eiffel Tower, visit museums and get a taste of the “City of Light.”

Art Retreats FranceFrom Paris we train to Toulouse and via our private coach travel to Carcassonne, the second most visited site in all of France after the Eiffel Tower. The site of Carcassonne has been occupied since Neolithic times and retained as a medieval fortified town well into the 16th century. It is an architectural marvel and has been restored to its medieval splendor. You will visit the towns of Albi and Sarlat, both known for their architecture and market shopping. We’ll have a wine tasting at a family owned vineyard and farm, visit art galleries, cathedrals, castles and several museums.

Cave Art FranceThe caves of Lascaux have been referred to as the prehistoric equivalent of the Sistine Chapel. Our visit to Lascaux includes private access and tour of the Fac Similé of Lascaux IV. Additionally, you will enjoy a day in Castle Merle, a prehistoric site renowned for 10 authentic prehistoric rock shelters dating back 35,000 years, and these cave dwellings include original sculptures from the period.

Art Retreats FranceOptional workshops are offered along the way for all participants, both kids and adults, including painting in caves (after learning to mix paint pigments), carving a limestone sculpture (after having your artists tools made in front of you!), and a visit with a local mosaic artist to create your own unique broken pieces souvenir. There will be opportunities to try on a suit of armor, sip coffee in a village while soaking in the local color, and wander through the grape vines of a family owned vineyard. At the end of our adventure we train back to Paris for one last night together and a special Bon Voyage dinner.

This trip is open to a multi-generation audience, adults and children ages 10+ with parents or guardian. Maverick Mosaics provides chaperone service for children 15+ who wish to travel without an adult. Contact us for more details.

Art Retreats FranceWhat does multi-generation mean? At Maverick Mosaics we believe strongly in the benefits of teaching the young as well as the young at heart. Young people bring an energy and unbiased view to our world.  What kinds of children will be on the trip? At this writing we cannot say, but on our previous trip we had children along who were filled with curiosity, humor and good manners. Some were in high school, others were college students and another had just received her masters degree. A parent must accompany children under 15. If you wish to travel with like-minded people, and the subjects and locations we are exploring on this trip interest you, then this adventure is designed for you.

An optional 4 day add-on in Paris and surrounding sites will be available. Contact us if this interests you. We will decide what additional sites to visit with input from participants.

Art Retreats FranceMany of the adventures on Maverick trips are UNIQUE, one-of-a-kind opportunities with many components not available to the public. We offer hassle free travel, English speaking escorts and university educated guides, wonderful accommodations, and street-level cultural engagement based in the world of art and architecture. We plan on making souvenir art-work along the way in workshops lead by local artisans, and enjoy professionally led wine tastings and fine food sampling.

Cost is $2,995 per person. Price includes lodging, all admission fees, ground transportation, daily breakfast, 3 lunches, closing farewell dinner and Escort fees. Price does not include airfare and is based on double occupancy.

For anyone traveling from Washington, DC (Dulles Airport) we are currently holding an airline reservation round trip to/from Paris $1,170 per person. More details here. Learn more about Maverick Mosaics here.

Light and Color Study in Amsterdam and Belgium with Carol Shelkin and Pam Goode

24 Jul

Light and Color Study in Amsterdam and Belgium
with Carol Shelkin and Pam Goode
May 15 – 26, 2015
$2975

Mosaic Art RetreatsHouseboat lodgings, canal cruises, visits with international mosaic artists, and a flower festival — how can you go wrong? Timed to coincide with the floriferous color inspiration of southern Holland’s most famous blooms, this retreat will be a delight for the senses as well as a networking mecca.

Mosaic Art RetreatsAMSTERDAM

We’ll dive into the artistic, architectural, cultural and culinary heart of Amsterdam, wandering among the 165 waterways (more than Venice!), discovering art, neighborhoods, hidden courtyards, local mosaics, and charming cafes. Amsterdam’s museums and private art collections feature stunning work by Rembrandt, a host of Van Goghs, and the light-drenched masterpieces of Vermeer.

Mosaic Art RetreatsWe’ll couple an art walk with a canal cruise, a trip to the museums with a mosaic session, visit the Anne Frank House, and tiptoe through the seven million flowers of the world-class Keukenhof Gardens.

Mosaic Art RetreatsWe’ll enjoy Amsterdam the way the locals do, with houseboat and apartment accommodations in the charming Jordann neighborhood. Fall asleep to the gentle rocking of calm waters and wake to the sound of ducks and swans paddling towards breakfast.

Shopping at Dam Square, floating flower markets and a skip through the legendary Albert Cuyp market (with multi-cultural street food) will fill our afternoons, and an evening will be spent visiting the lovely canals, Gothic-Renaissance architecture, and action of the Red Light District.

BELGIUM

Art TravelBelgium, famous around the world for the highest quality chocolate, beckons us to Brussels for a chocolate walking/tasting/making tour. We’ll tour Grand-Place, considered one of the most beautiful medieval squares in Europe, and revel in sumptuous Art Nouveau of the tree-lined and fountain-y Squares District, considered a laboratory of late nineteenth-century architecture, and the Magritte Museum.

Mosaic Art RetreatsDay trips to Bruges and Ghent will deliver two of Flanders’ most picturesque countryside havens. We’ll see Bruges’ Lake of Love, Beguinage, Our Lady Church, Market Square and lunch at a cafe close to Town Hall Square (Burg) — food lover’s dream and a beer lover’s heaven. We’ll also wander through architecture from the Middle Ages and head for a stroll along the North Sea. A highlight will be an afternoon spent with Belgian mosaic artists, talking shop over tea and chocolate.

Logistics

To make the most of our time, we’ll fly into Amsterdam, travel by high speed train to Belgium, and return home via the Brussels airport. Local transport will be via train and tram.

Included

Double Occupancy Accommodations in Amsterdam and Belgium
Transfer from Schiphol Amsterdam Airport (AMS) to City Center
Amsterdam Tram Tickets
Kukenhof Gardens
Sunset Canal Cruise & Dinner
Mosaic Workshop with Greet Weitenberg at Amphora Art
Ann Frank House Entrance & Self Guided Tour
Red Light Walking Tour
Two Museums: Rijksmuseum & Van Gogh
Train to Belgium
Chocolate Making Tour & Workshop
Day Trips to Ghent & Bruges
Transport to Brussels Airport (BRU) for Return Flights

 Not Included

  • Airfare
  • Meals
  • Personal Expenses
  • Travel Insurance

About Carol and Pam

Carol and Pam have many years’ experience traveling the world both separately and together, having teamed to lead several international art retreats. Limiting the tour to 10 adult travelers will allow us to form friendships and bonds that last a lifetime. Learn more about Carol here. Learn more about Pam here and here.

For More Information or To Register:

Registration forms are available; just email Carol or Pam. A detailed itinerary will be available shortly.

 

Treasures of Barcelona and Madrid with Maverick Mosaics

19 May

Treasures of Barcelona and Madrid
Maverick Mosaics
September 12 – 21, 2014
$2995

Travel Abroad with Maverick Mosaics as Adult Art Camp goes International!

Mosaic Art Retreats SpainOur second international trip will be to the colorful country of Spain to pay homage to three of Spain’s most important native sons: Pablo Picasso, Antonio Gaudi and Salvador Dali.

Introducing the trip of a lifetime for anyone with a sense of adventure. Get ready to enjoy a long week of culture, history, contemporary art, great food and a hands-on project. You’ll experience the splendor of Spain in the spirit of Maverick Mosaics’ successful Art Camp format: learn, create and laugh.

Take in the magic and beauty of Spain with like-minded and adventuresome companions. Your trip will be filled with fun adventures and designed to entertain while providing unique learning experiences. We offer hassle-free travel, wonderful accommodations, and street-level cultural engagement based in the world of art and architecture. We plan at least two hands-on workshops including making mosaics.

Mosaic Art Retreats SpainOur adventure begins in Madrid as we spend our first day discovering the wonders of the Royal Palace and Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, where Picasso’s masterpiece “Guernica” is enshrined. With Madrid as our home base, you’ll make day trips to Segovia and Toledo. In Toledo our day includes time at the cathedral Santo Tomé to view an El Greco masterpiece and a visit to Sinagoga de Santa Maria la Blanca. We’ll visit internationally recognized potters and renowned Toledo sword makers whose blades have been sought after from around the world (think Zorro, swashbuckling Earl Flynn and Samurai warriors!).

En route to Segovia, a must-see stop at El Escorial is planned. The building is the most important architectural monument of the Spanish Renaissance. After a magical day in Segovia, where architecture dates to Roman times, we’ll train to Barcelona.

Mosaic Art Retreats SpainOnce in Barcelona you’ll have a series of fabulous art filled experiences: The Picasso Museum, a guided tour of Gaudi’s Bascilica de la Sagrada Familia, Park Güell and La Pedrera. You’ll make your own mosaic in the spirit of Gaudi and revel in the magic of the city as we make our way touring its famous sights. Topping off our time in Barcelona, we’ll visit the Salvador Dali museum, one of the most unique and multi-sensory museums in the world.

Professionally led wine tastings, fine food and dancing are also scheduled along the way. We wrap up our trip with a day at the beach in breathtaking Sitges. Just a short drive from Barcelona, this is “The Jewel” of the Catalan coast.

Maverick’s inaugural Art Camp trip to France in June 2013 was amazing, thanks in large part to the expertise and planning of our travel and logistics partner A La Carte Travel. A La Carte Travel is the nation’s leader in exclusively providing educational institutions with affordable access to learning opportunities abroad, and Maverick Mosaics qualifies as an educational institution. Hassle free travel is paramount, ground transportation and transfers are included, no waiting in lines for scheduled tours and we have a full time English/Spanish speaking escort traveling with us. A La Carte Travel promotes the values of understanding the world we live in through experiencing and learning about different cultures. With over 16 years of experience organizing educational tours, A La Carte Travel is the perfect partner with Maverick Mosaics for this unique travel and learning adventure.

For more details, trip itinerary, workshop details and costs please click here.

Navigating Airfares: Knowing When to Buy

24 Mar

Low Airfare YipsWhen I first started doing my own research and finding my own best fares, it was a pretty peachy thrill. I felt so in control. The world was my oyster, and I could grab a ticket to explore it with a few taps of my fingers. Possibilities were spilling open, and yet … in retrospect, the decisions were pretty simple. Online sites were few (expedia), flights were many, and pricing made some sense. Now, well … things have changed.

I still love dreaming up a getaway and making it happen, but I confess that my finger trembles a bit more while hovering over the Confirm button. Am I saving a bundle or blowing one? Should I wait to book tomorrow, or was last week my last best chance?

I was happy for a little hand holding by Airfare Watchdog this week in the form of their 2014 guide to booking Low. Check it out, and plan something lovely.

Italy Anyone? May 2013

29 Nov

Eye candy for the soul! Inspiration for the artist.

If you see anything you like, I’ll be leading a mosaic workshop / retreat to Italy May 12 – 18, 2013. Drink in the beauty of old walls and endless vistas, then learn how to translate your photographs into strong mosaic designs. We’ll be working small, so there will be plenty of time to soak up culture, feed the spirit, and try out a new way of being. More information here. More motivation below.

Click on the first photo to enlarge, and then browse your way through a few of my past trips to beautiful Italy. Hope you’ll join me in May!

Mosaic Intensive with Sonia King: Paros, Greece, 2013

6 Nov

*WAIT LIST ONLY

Mosaic Intensive: Greece
Working in White on the Greek Island of Paros
with Sonia King
June 17 – 21, 2013
$2375

Mosaic Art Retreats GreeceJoin Sonia for an intensive five-day mosaic workshop on the sun-drenched island of Paros in Greece.  Paros is famous for the beautiful white marble that the ancient Greeks carved into statues like the Venus de Milo. We’ll take our inspiration from this amazing material and work all in whites, tone on tone. This will be a rare opportunity to enhance your mosaic skills in an inspiring and stimulating environment.

Sonia King Intensive GreeceCreating mosaic in a monochrome palette emphasizes the focus on cutting, laying style, reflectivity, scale and texture. Limiting possible decisions to the primary principles of mosaic offers learning opportunities that color can mask. Technically, there will be extensive inquiry into cutting techniques, methods of laying and broadening your skill set. The class specifically covers working with texture, scale, andamento and spacing; achieving effects through varied cutting and laying styles and/or mixed materials, working direct. There will be discussions about design, the complexity of working with more than one material, reflectivity and more. Most importantly, you’ll leave the workshop with an elevated sense of what mosaic is about, a new way of thinking about your work and the knowledge to enable you to push to the next level. Prior mosaic experience is recommended. Some white materials will be supplied. (A list of the supplied materials will be sent in advance so class participants can bring additional materials, or even additional colors, if they wish.)

Mosaic Art Retreats GreeceThere will be an optional side trip on one day, by ferry, to the island of Delos to see ancient mosaics.  Participants may choose to come along or to remain in the studio working.  The atmosphere will be relaxed and there will be ample time for swimming and sunning on the beach steps away from our hotel.

Mosaic Art Retreats GreeceThe course fee includes:
* Get-acquainted dinner on the evening before the workshop begins, June 16
* Individual instruction/coaching by Sonia, structured to meet each participant’s experience level and goals.
* Group discussions on the art of mosaic, cutting techniques, ergonomics, technical issues, the business of art, critical thinking and problem-solving strategies for design/implementation and more.
* Substrate, adhesive, marble and the use of a hammer/hardie. Bring your own hand tools. Participants may also want to bring additional materials to work with, such as glass, unglazed ceramic, smalti, beads, found objects, etc. More info on recommended tools and materials will be supplied.
* Optional day trip to visit ancient mosaics on the island of Delos with lunch and shopping opportunities on Mykonos
* Closing night dinner party, June 21

Not included:
* Transportation (airfares, ferries, taxis, etc.)
* Meals (other than breakfast at the hotel and the get-acquainted and closing dinners)
* Optional side trip to visit the ancient mosaics on island of Delos plus lunch & shopping on Mykonos

Mosaic Art Retreats GreeceSpace is limited so early registration is recommended.  Cost is $2,375 US. Ten participants are required for the class to be held. A deposit of $500 is required on booking and the class fills on a first-come basis. Balance of the fee is due by February 1st, allowing ample time for buying air tickets at the best price.  After February 1st, refunds will be given provided the opening is filled. (There is always a wait list so a refund is likely.) Refunds will be less any money transfer fees. Payment may be made by US $ checks, US $ wire transfer, Western Union or PayPal. (PayPal incurs a small percentage transaction fee)

Direct inquiries to Sonia.
Include contact info (name, address, phone, e-mail). As the workshop approaches, recommended tool information, details about materials and advice about logistics will be sent.

See images from the 2011 workshop on Paros

Click here for a flyer in PDF format for printing

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