15 March 2012

The rose garden in winter

Before spring officially takes hold, I wanted to share some images from a visit to the Giardino delle Rose (Florence's rose garden) earlier in the year. Beginning last October, the garden is now open year-round, so this is the first time I've been able to experience it in January. I went up there with the intention of spending some time under my favorite olive tree, but ended up wandering with my camera in hand, drawn from rare rose buds to plentiful rose hips, from plump persimmons to cracked pomegranates, from smooth stalks to thorny stems, only returning home when my memory chip was full. It was bitterly cold that day, and the branches of the trees, bare of leaves, stood out sharply against the blue sky. Yet, as I have sat from time to time with these photos over the past several weeks, trying to cull a collection nearing two-hundred-and-fifty into something more manageable (there will surely be future 'sets'), I am struck by how much color and life was present in the garden that afternoon. And where color was absent, the sun stepped in to lend its magic.

I distinctly recall enjoying that outing to the rose garden so much that, over the course of those few hours, I repeatedly chastised myself for not making a point of getting out of the studio more often; sometimes it seems like such a waste to not take advantage of all that Florence offers. In the two months since that garden visit, various projects & deadlines have continued to keep me, recluse-like, mostly at home. But I have realized that I don't really tend to think much about what I'm missing...I do love our top-story 'house up in the sky'which fills with light all afternoonand my work. Living against the background of the city's soundtrack...with church bells ringing, birds chirping, voices carrying, bicycles whizzing past...I still feel very much a part of it. And every time I do step through the portone, into the piazza and beyond, I seem to see the city with new eyes.

News on my latest projects soon, but for now, here's a glimpse of some of my favorite images from the Rose Garden in January...

{Past entries about the Rose Garden are here, here & here. The first link is to an image-heavy page, so it will likely take a minute or two to download properly.}


  1. Just stunning! I love the spare beauty of these unadorned plants...

  2. Thanks, Fiona. It really felt like such a treat to finally be able to see the rose garden at this time of year. I'm looking forward to the chance to experience it in all four seasons...
    - Lisa


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