Art Holidays Val d'Orcia

Spring, Summer and Autumn

Dear friends,

as most of you know my small, privately run art school has been closed since the beginning of the pandemic. I will call these 14 months my Black Iron Oxide times, i.e. pure blackness. And yet, despite all, I am still thinking that I could find ways to pursue beauty, do something meaningful and offer the chance to learn the fine arts.

During summer, I will rent a grand farmhouse in Val d'Orcia, Tuscany, and offer art tuition everyday for all those of you who are so over this virus and seek beauty and freedom. I am also looking for a cellist to play for us in the garden and for a cook, with whom to learn how to make "pici".

We will live immersed in dense oak and beech woods, not far from natural, wild, unspoilt springs and we will visit a few Medieval hamlets. In full respect of covid-19 guidelines, we will find the right balance between safety/carefulness and sociability/fun. If you would love to do something creative in a special environment, please get in touch (and word of mouth will be utterly appreciated!)

Available weeks: July 24th/31st and/or September 11th-18th, 2021.

Let's meet where the sun never sets!

Elena Governo

Planning a trip to Val d'Orcia

Val d'Orcia is a region of Tuscany which extends from the hills south of Siena to Monte Amiata. Its gentle, cultivated hills are occasionally sprinkled with Medieval Villages, cypresses and natural springs.

Where to stay & What to do

I have teamed up with Emanuele, architect, owner of a wonderful farmhouse called Il Colombaio. The farmhouse was built around a 16th century sighting tower, constructed directly upon an enormous rock that is still partially visible in the main room. The renovation was careful and respectful, all the original materials were kept: trachyte walls; chestnut beams; the terracotta tiles or the rough stone for the floors. The kitchen features majolicas hand painted by local artisans. Il Colombaio is immersed in woods of chestnut and oak where the altitude prohibits beech trees to grow. The beech groves are like temples of white columns, in autumn turning to shades of orange yellow, bright red.

The nearest town is Vivo d'Orcia, also known as the town of the waters, as it is historically tied to a few natural springs where a group of monks settled in the Middle Ages to celebrate contemplative life in the woods.


 Along the stream, starting from the Middle Ages, mills, paper mills, ironworks were built and, in the 1920s, a first power plant that exploited water energy. Traces of these ancient buildings are still visible, covered by vines, in one of the most beautiful and evocative landscapes of the area.

Il Colombaio di Vivo d'Orcia

Retreat for artists, writers and musicians