The Roman Road The Val D’Orcia is one of the most famous valleys in the world even though the name itself may not mean much. Tourists have travelled the Roman road called the via Cassia since the 16th century on the Grand Tour, but before them it was trod by pilgrims on their way to […]
The umbrella pine, supreme among Mediterranean trees since Etrusco-Roman times is, to quote the woman in our local nursery here in Orvieto, fuori moda, out of fashion. How can this be? Known also as the Italian Stone Pine it is recognised all over the world as an Italian icon. So I ordered two for €45 […]conceptual art, Daniel Buren, Italian landscape, stone pine, umbrella pine
Grand Tour: Radicofani on the Cassia.
Following the ancient Via Cassia, our photography workshop follows the Grand Tour route. The Val d’Orcia, famous and beloved site of modern photographers and artists in Tuscany, to the traveller of yore it was just a desolate region to be got through. For nigh on a thousand years Rome had been the goal of pilgrims following the […]Cassia, coaching inn, Francigena, Grand-Tour, medici, post house, radicofani, William Turner Orvieto
Hidden treasure to photograph: Octagonal Church Ruin in Val di Lago, Bolsena
The ancient church occupies a site once sacred to the Etruscans. Lake Bolsena was the centre of their cult. The charm of the place lies in its desolate remoteness in the swamps near Lake Bolsena. Until the 1920s malaria was the scourge of the Italy. Often entire communities were decimated because the origins of the […]Italy hidden treasure to photograph, lake Bolsena, photographic set, photography-workshop, san lorenzo vecchio, St Cristina bolsena, st John Baptist
Hidden treasure to photograph: an enchanted secret garden, Stranglers Park in Pitigliano, Tuscany.
Just outside Pitigliano lies the Parco Orsini commonly known locally as Stranglers Park, and thereby hangs a tale………… Orso Orsini was a prince of wild ways. Wayward brother of the cultured condottiero Niccolò, he married the beautiful Eleanora degli Atti di Morlupo, whose name was long but her life short. He strangled her in a […]Bomarzo, Italy hidden treasure to photograph, Orso Orsini, photographic set, photography-workshop, Pitigliano, secret garden, Tuscany, Vicino Orsini
Poggio Conte – Part 2
There is an extraordinary atmosphere in the sacred glade so it is no surprise that this has been a sacred place for thousands of years. The Sacred Glade was Christianised, but something of the ancient magic remained: the frescoes that remain in the church are testimony to that. The church was cut into the rock […]archeo-acoustics, Etruria, etruscan, Ischia di Castro, paganism, phallus, Poggio Conte, shamanism, yoni
Poggio Conte – Part 1, The Sacred Glade
“Sunrise glowed red as I climbed along the gorge; when I reached the grove, I saw the altar slab all scattered with brightness, like the harper’s robe. I put down my load, and prayed to Apollo.” Poggio Conte will appear immediately familiar to anyone who has read Mary Renault’s The King Must Die, a novel […]Etruscan cemetery, Italian hidden treasure, Italy hidden treasure to photograph, Poggio Conte, san colomba, Tuscany
Hidden Treasure to photograph: the hermitage of Ripatonna, South Tuscany.
One of the interesting lost sites within an hour of Orvieto we made a Camera Etrusca excursion to the hermitage of Ripatonna. Much of what is now known as northern Latium north of Rome on the borders of Tuscany was until the 1930s a veritable wilderness. Saracen pirates had scourged the area and malaria had […]etruscan, Italian hidden treasure, Italy, Italy hidden treasure to photograph, not just photography, photo trip, photographic set, Ripatonna Cicognina, Tuscany