The Florence Academy of Art is a small and dynamic center dedicated to the training of young artists through the combination of intense observation with advanced craft skills. The curriculum derives from the classical-realist tradition rooted in the 19th century (most particularly exemplified by the French Academies in the teaching of master painters like Gérôme, Bonnat, and Carlos Duran) but also addresses the creative and professional position of the artist in a contemporary environment.
It is the view of this Academy that throughout the 20th century prominent movements of art have steadily drawn attention (and teaching) away from close observation of the material world and the acquisition of strong technical skills, to a position where cohesive artistic thought is inexorably fragmented by the urge towards greater individual expression.
The Academy, therefore, provides students with the opportunity to explore distinctive aspects of their chosen subject through the development of considerable powers of draftsmanship, direct study of works of the Old Masters, and a deep, practical understanding of the materials and methods of the artist. By this means, and through the resulting identification of clear artistic objectives, students acquire creative self-confidence, visual understanding, and subtle and precise powers of description.
Study at the Academy centers upon the importance of drawing (particularly drawing from the human figure) as a means to gaining skill in painting or sculpture. Through intense observation, students acquire a visual literacy that enables them to interpret humanist values in their work, and, ultimately, seek to create a work of universal relevance.