News News: Italian Studies

The Italian Program Goes to the Museum

Bot 1On March 29th the Italian Program organized a guided tour of the wonderful exhibition Botticelli and the Search for the Divine hosted at the Muscarelle Museum. This is the most important Botticelli exhibition in the United States so far.

A group of about 25 students, currently enrolled in our language classes, was guided through the breathtaking masterpieces by two fabulous docents and natives of Italy: Mariangela Rodilosso and Gloria Bonassi Baller. Students had the opportunity to learn about Botticelli’s art and his time, and also learn a few new words in Italian! They were amazed by the exhibition and enjoyed the experience very much! Brandon Mullins, a student in Italian 102, said that it was a very informative experience: “I believe being able to see these pieces of art in person is a completely different experience that seeing them online or in a textbook.” Some of them were also very excited to see more of Botticelli during their upcoming summer study abroad program in Florence.

Bot 2For those who are not traveling to Italy, it might have been an even greater opportunity. As Erin Gunderson, a senior enrolled in Italian 103, said: “Going to the Botticelli Exhibit at William and Mary felt like taking a trip to Florence or Rome but without a passport.” Erin was struck by the paintings and stated: “I don’t know if I could ever have enough time to truly appreciate Botticelli’s glowing, ethereal goddesses and Madonnas but having the exhibit so accessible meant I had time to try. It was a bit surreal to go from studying the Renaissance in my history class to admiring the frescoes that made the journey all the way from Italy to Williamsburg. I didn’t get a chance to spend a semester abroad, but I’m grateful that one beautiful piece of the world made its way to campus.”


– Prof. Sara Mattavelli