Hands on art at Ponte a Serraglio

In collaboration with Home of Artisans and British artist Carol Newmarch, there was a demonstration of pottery making in Ponte Serraglio as part of the Art Festival. The street was closed and the crowds gathered for a fun and informative display.

The Art Festival is going from strength to strength and it is great to see lots of interest from locals and visitors alike.







Thank you Belinda from Home of Artisans for sharing the photos with us.

I hope you will all drop into Belinda’s gallery to see all of the lovely things created by artists from all over the world.




The Bagni di Lucca Art Festival

The second Bagni di Lucca Art Festival is well underway in Ponte a Serraglio and La Villa. I would love to be there to see it, but I am in Australia for a while. Luckily for us Francis is there to report on the fun.

Go to  From London to Longoio to see the latest from the festival.20140706-082550.jpg

Art at Ponte a Serraglio

Summer is almost with us and soon the Bagni di Lucca Art Festival will begin. Saturday evening saw an exhibition at La Rondine Gallery…just a taste of things to come.

It’s great to see people come out and join in the fun.

Take a look at Bagni di Lucca Art Festival for the programme.

Bagni di Lucca Art Festival 2014

The very first Bagni di Lucca Art Festival was held with great success in 2013. Ponte a Serraglio came alive with art exhibitions, performances and parties throughout the summer.

Jaqueline and Jake and their team of volutneers are to be congratulated. With a miniscule budget and a lot of hard work they produced something wonderful.

Old shops in Ponte a Serrraglio were renovated and filled with exciting exhibitions and activities. People came out to enjoy opening celebrations and be part of the first festival. The little piazza was full of artists, performers and fun.

A particular favourite of mine was the installation in the river, called Fragile Community by Sandro Del Pistoia.

Plans are well underway for the 2014 event. This year Jaqueline and Jake are hoping to encourage even more participation in the form of sponsorship (please) and people with ideas and the courage and energy to bring their ideas into fruition.

If you can help in any way…if you think you have a great idea for the festival and have the time to help make it happen…please come forward and let the organisers know.

This year’s event will be shorter and more concentrated and will hopefully spread to other villages in Bagni di Lucca. Jaqueline and Jake would like to include more ideas and people in 2014.

The Bagni di Lucca Art Festival has the potential to be a significant art event which will be excellent for the future of the town. A thriving art community in this beautiful setting would bring more people and provide more jobs for those living here.

The festival needs your help to spread the word…talk to your friends and neighbours about it…write about it on your blog or Facebook page…it would be great if the whole community of Bagni di Lucca was involved…if not as participants or helpers then as spectators.

Please email Jaqueline at artfestivalbagnidilucca@gmail.com if you have any suggestions to make a huge success of the 2014 event.

Look at artfestivalbagnidilucca.org for more information on the festival.

Click here, here, here, here, hereand here to see the posts on Bella Bagni di Lucca about the 2013 Art Festival.

River art

Our lovely friend Agostino sent these great photos of the latest art installation at Ponte a Serraglio. He lives above the village and has a bird’s eye view.


Here is a closer perspective.



…and from the other side of the bridge.


It looks like giant meccano floating on the river. I have no idea how it was done. Had I been at Ponte a Serraglio while it was happening I would have been able to tell, it is right under our balcony.

Thank you Agostino for the great photos!

Notti di Musica al Casino


A very exciting part of the Bagni di Lucca Art Festival is the live entertainment. The organisers of the Art Festival in collaboration with the Fondazione Michel de Montaigne are presenting 3 wonderful evenings of music at the Casino in Ponte a Serraglio.

The Casino was the very first in Europe and was brought back to life several years ago with a beautiful renovation. What an excellent setting for these events!

On Thursday 18th July at 9.00pm there will be a concert piano recital by Ronald Farren-Price, a renowned Australian pianist. He will be performing Beethoven, Debussy, Chopin and Liszt.

On Friday 19th July at 9.00pm Neco Novellas will perform World Live Music.

On Saturday 20th July at 9.00pm Lucca Opera Festival will perform Opera in Maschera. Soloists Michelle Buscemi, Elena Fioretti, Letizia Cappellini, Claudio Sassetti, Mattia Campetti and Andrea Carcassi will perfrom the music of Mozart with pianist Jonathan Brandani. I have attended several delightful performances by the ensemble at the Oratorio degli Angeli Custodi in Lucca and I wish I was in Bagni di Lucca to see them in the beautiful Casino.

These amazing concerts are free, but you will need to book a place by email through http://artfestivalbagnidilucca.org or phone 349 5985908.

What a great time to be in Bagni di Lucca!

The opening celebrations for the Bagni di Lucca Art Festival

The first Bagni di Lucca Art Festival was officially opened with a party at Ponte a Serraglio. Several of the shops in the main street have been renovated and are now home to visiting artists.

On Saturday night the road was closed and there was a wonderful street party.



The artists exhibiting for the first weeks include…
Giuseppe del Debbio
Christian Gironda
Melissa Moore
Gianmarco Caselli
Jacolo da San Martino
Selby Hickey
David Finkbeiner
Michael Hanning


Thank you to my lovely friends Kerry and Moira for taking photos for us. I wish I had been there to join in the fun. I’m sure the next couple of months are going to be exciting in Ponte a Serraglio.

Congratulations to Jaqueline and her team for a successful opening to a very welcome event. For more information on the Art Festival please take a look at their website.www.artfestivalbagnidilucca.org

Bagni di Lucca’s Art Festival

Bagni di Lucca is set to host a brand new Art Festival this summer. In the sunny months of July, August and September Ponte a Seraglio will be filled with performance artists, painters, sculptors and photographers.

Meet part of the organizing team.


From the left…Jaqueline, Ira, our Sindaco Dottore Betti and Jake.

With the help of our Sindaco (mayor), our beautiful venues, such as the Teatro Accademico, the Casino, the Sala Parrocchiale and others will be filled with exciting performance artists. Click here to see more on the Casino and here for the Teatro Accademico.




As well as this, artists will be able to display their collections of art work in some of the unused shops in the main street of Ponte a Serraglio at no cost. One of the best aspects of this is that the local people are getting involved in the clean up and renovation of these lovely shops, some of which have been empty for decades.

It is absolutely wonderful to see people working together to make the village more beautiful and to provide a welcome space for the artists.

A particularly exciting part if the festival will be provided by the very talented (and charming) Ira Seidenstein. Ira has been involved in the theatre since 1973 as an actor, director, playwright and choreographer. He also has extensive experience in clown theatre. Among other things he has worked with the world renowned Cirque du Soleil as a performer and teacher.


It is in his capacity as a teacher that he will be involved in the Art Festival. Ira has conducted workshops in London, Paris, Auckland , Barcelona and is now on his way to Vienna and Malmo, Sweden to continue. He has also conducted workshops in Brisbane where he now lives. (it is indeed a small world, he lives just minutes from our house in West End)

Ira will be conducting a workshop the last week in August and the first week of September, with a performance to follow in conjunction with the Art Festival. He was in town recently to look at suitable venues, and was delighted with what Bagni di Lucca has to offer. How lucky we are that someone of his calibre is involved with our very first Art Festival.

Check out his website…you will be impressed. www.iraseid.com

Top marks to Jaqueline and Jake for getting the festival off the ground. Everybody is invited to take part in whatever way possible…as an artist, helper, renovator or perhaps, most importantly as a spectator.


Please look at the Art Festival’s website and be involved in this exciting event in Bagni di Lucca.