Pietrasanta - An Artists Mecca

If you’re an artist or a sculptor you’ll no doubt have heard of Pietrasanta, if you’re not you probably haven’t and are missing out on a little jewel of Tuscany. The coast of Versilia is famous in its’ own right for wide stretches of sandy beaches, coastal resorts such as Viareggio with its art deco buildings and Forte di Marmi the famous millionaires seaside playground, all with a stunning background of the sheer hills of the Apuan Alps. Nestled in these hills is the perfect little ancient town of Pietrasanta, so close to the sea and its modern sister town of Marina di Pietrasanta yet far enough into the hills to enjoy the cooling breezes so refreshing in the summer months. Pietrasanta is the Italian Mecca for artists worldwide, with wonderful laboratories and studios with expert craftsmen seeming effortlessly sculpting exquisite statues. Wonderful works have all been made in the town. Past genius’s such as Michelangelo created masterpieces from large blocks of local marble from nearby Carrara and today’s contemporary artists such as Igor Mitoraj use bronze and other raw materials produced locally. There are in fact statues of Mitoraj throughout the town, donations from the artist who now lives there and is an honorary citizen. Works have been commissioned and shipped all over the world from here, busts for American presidents, marble flooring for Arab states, and imposing lifelike tigers and elephants bound for the maharajas of India. The laboratories and studios can be visited and there are many craft courses from marble carving to ceramics decoration available locally. The atmosphere of this beautiful little town is delightful, wonderful little streets lead to pretty piazzas with pavement cafes, perfect for watching this colourful little world with its interesting and talented people go by. Visit the lovely Duomo and the Museo dei Bozzetti in the old convent of S. Agostino which houses over 400 examples from over 250 artists who worked in the area throughout the 1900’s.