Open Week at Villa La Pietra is a rare chance to explore the grounds of NYU Florence’s sprawling campus, formerly the residence of British scholar and writer Sir Harold Acton and family. Free guided visits (with required reservations) will run throughout the week in both English and Italian, led by staff and scholars who know the collections up and down. Beyond the lush scenery, noteworthy rooms, and permanent art collections, visitors will also have the chance to see the current exhibition Harold in China, 1932-39: Photographs from the Acton Collection, which features not only photography but also books, sculptures, decorative objects and a Chinese robe that once belonged to the prominent Anglo-Italian family. To schedule a visit, call 055.5007210 or email [email protected]
Santo Spirito artisan and modern-day “Renaissance woman” Marina Calamai is the creative force behind Apologia della Creatività, an experiential performance fusing sound, scent, music, dance, and Florentine craft culture. The soundtrack to the show will be pre-recorded audio taken from the artisan workshops of Florence—treating their tools, machinery, and neighborhood noises as symphonic musical instruments. Complementing this is an olfactory experience of straight-from-the-bottega-bench materials: think wood, bronze and wrought iron. The second half of the show will bring a performance by the Opus Ballet Company, using choreography inspired by Florence’s craft traditions and staged in the courtyard of the Museo Novecento. The event is organized in collaboration with Advancing Women Artists Foundation, Accademia delle Belle Arti, Manetti Battiloro and Le Arti Orafe. For more information, email [email protected]
ACAMI (the Italian Association of Contemporary Art Museums) hosts its annual Giornata del Contemporaneo (Contemporary Art Day) in museums up and down the Boot this Saturday. The Museo Novecento will take part with a 12-hour marathon of events; apart from L'Apologia della Creatività show (see above) the space will host a "Living Sculptures" event for families with children ages 6 to 10, connected to the current Piero Manzoni exhibition (scheduled for 11am) and a guided visit with museum director Sergio Risaliti focused on the Alberto della Ragione collection (3pm). Entry is free all day and hours are extended until 11pm. For more information, see www.acami.org and www.museonovecento.it/en.
Drizzly early-autumn weather is the perfect excuse for a night at the cinema, and this weekend brings a must-see. Bradley Cooper's directorial debut A Star is Born has already generated Oscar buzz. The third remake of the 1937 original – other versions have starred Judy Garland and Barbara Streisand – this musical-romance film features Cooper as Jackson, a musician who helps catapult the career of Ally (played by Lady Gaga in a widely praised performance) while his own begins to decline. For showtimes, see www.odeonfirenze.com.