Your Thursday forecast: best events in Florence
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Your Thursday forecast: best events in Florence

Thu 14 Jun 2018 9:46 AM

SPIRITUAL/Festa della Cultura, San Giovanni Battista

June 18-24

Various venues in Florence

Part sacred arts festival, part community celebration, the Festa della Cultura San Giovanni Battista pays homage to Florence’s patron saint John the Baptist, culminating with his feast day on June 24. Per tradition, the Church of Santi Apostoli is the festival’s spiritual center, but many events will be dispersed throughout downtown. A program highlight is the art exhibition Peace, Light and Hope, in which Florence-based artists explore themes related to John the Baptist and Florentine inspiration; in a noteworthy development for 2018, the show will be held in the Accademia delle Arti del Disegno (June 18-22, Salone al primo piano). A guided tour offering the chance to meet participating artists and explore the Accademia’s refined setting at Palazzo dei Beccai will take place on June 21 (10am-12 noon). The same prestigious venue will also host a multimedia concert on the history of the birth of opera in Florence (June 18, 9-10pm, Sala delle Adunanze). For the full program, see the website.


OXFAM/Oriental Garden

June 16, 10am-7pm

Giardino Torrigiani, via dei Serragli 144, Florence

Get your Vinyasa flow going and celebrate wellness in all its forms in a fabulous outdoor setting. Oxfam Italia will host the sixth edition of Oriental Garden, a fundraising event supporting the organization’s fights for justice and equality while showcasing shiatsu, reiki, massage and various forms of treatments and exercises borrowed from the Eastern world. With an entrance fee of 10 euro, visitors will have the chance to sample Shakti dance or try out acroyoga, a discipline fusing acrobatic gymnastics, yoga and Thailandese massage. Pilates, gong baths and plenty of other healing exercises are on the program; just take your own mat and you’ll be good to go. While most group activities are open and run throughout the day, reservations are recommended for individual-focused items, such as naturopathic medicine treatments. For more information, see Oxfam Italia’s website.

NEIGHBORHOOD/The new piazza del Carmine

June 16, from 5pm

Piazza del Carmine, Florence

Once relegated to parking-lot status, the historic piazza del Carmine has gotten a makeover and the neighborhood will celebrate this Saturday. The square’s signature monument, the Cappella Brancacci—home to famous Masaccio and Masolino frescoes—will be open late with free entry (from 5pm to 11pm, with last admission scheduled for 10.30pm and mandatory booking; call 055 2768224 or email Another highlight will come at 6.30pm when the Sedicente Moradi sculpture “Leone” will be inaugurated amid the recently-planted trees of the piazza. From 8pm, marvel at projections of Masaccio works on the façade of Santa Maria del Carmine, and from 8.30pm, the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino will give a concert.


Ongoing until June 15

Fortezza da Basso, viale Filippo Strozzi, Florence

Pitti Uomo 94 / ph. @marcobadiani for @theflorentine

World-famous menswear fair Pitti Uomo is now in its 94th edition, with a fresh crop of buyers, bloggers, models, designers, journalists and tastemakers brought to Florence. You’ll recognize the “Pitti people” by their colorful suits and socks, cuffed trousers and calculated nonchalance as they congregate around the Fortezza da Basso fashion village, unfussed about being photographed (so it would seem). There’s still time to enjoy several edition highlights: the free, football-and-fashion-focused public exhibition, Fanatic Feelings, takes place in the Santa Maria Novella complex (on until July 22). Although trade shows and VIP parties are closed to the general public, there’s fashionable fanfare around town, off-circuit events and exhibitions (check out “EcoEgo”, a sustainability-themed collection by the Istituto Europeo di Design, on show at Palazzo Davanzati until June 17). For more information, see Pitti Immagine’s website.


From our Estate Fiorentina special 

Firenze Rocks

June 14-17
Visarno Arena, viale del Visarno 14, Florence

In recent years the Cascine Park’s Visarno Arena has become something of a revival tent for rockstars—giants of past decades who bring their A-game for cross-generational audiences. This year’s playbill features the Dave Grohl-fronted Foo Fighters and “Paradise City” rockers Guns & Roses – these first two shows, June 14 and 15, have sold out except for special last-minute out-of-towner package deals. Some less expensive tickets are still available for the Iron Maiden show (with openers Helloween, Jonathan Davis and Shinedown) as well as for the grand finale with the “Crazy Train” conductor himself, Ozzy Osbourne (June 17, with openers Avenged Sevenfold, Judas Priest and Tremonti). For details, see the Firenze Rocks website.


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