The Studio at Santa Maria a Rignana


This residency runs mainly as a self funded, self directed artists&rsquo retreat. However occasional tutor led workshops are also planned. The aim is to provide an opportunity for visual artists to work freely in a new context and beautiful location in the expectation that this will inspire new work.

The renovation is now complete and we are open for bookings. Residencies run from May to the end of September. Please see the website for further photographs and a short video of the house and studio.

The studio welcomes artists living in the surrounding area to join the residency on a non resident basis.

If other, please specify?:

There is a small press for monoprinting but no acid bath.
Residency Programme since: N/A
Description of Organisation: Where?

The studio is in an atmospheric ex church. The artists live in the priest’s house which is attached to the church and dates back to the 19th century, though parts of it are much older as there has been a church on this site since the 10th century.

Santa Maria a Rignana is part of a small hamlet approximately 5 kms from the nearest small town (Greve-in-Chianti). It is 32 kms from Florence and 57 from Siena. Both are reachable within an hour by car.


This residency would be attractive to artists working in any medium who wish to work on a particular project or who would like to develop new ideas for future work. The approach to one’s work is considered to be as important as the content of the work or the medium in which it is expressed.The maximum number of artists at any one time is 4.

What is expected of the artist?

The artist is expected to spend time creating and/or planning a body of work and to participate in open studio days. The space allows for large or small works and is an exciting location for performance. Artists may want to work peacefully on their own, in active collaboration or follow a parallel path on a mutually agreed theme.

The residency is self funding and the rental for each person is 220 euros per week. For those who wish to stay for a longer period the cost is  780 euros for four weeks. Extra costs include the cost of food(roughly 50 euros per week), electricity and gas (minimal in the summer). You will be expected to contribute to the cost of petrol for visits to Florence and Siena.

Artists need to bring their own materials (e.g. brushes, tools, paints, paper etc.), although there is the possibility of buying some further materials on site or from a well stocked art shop in Florence.

What is provided?

The residency provides a beautiful and comfortably furnished living space and a very large studio. Each artist will have their own work space in the church with a table, chair, lamp, drawing boards, easel and storage trolley.

There is an intaglio press for those wishing to use it.

Projector and screen for showing work and films.

Some work tools and basic equipment will be available for use in the studio.


Clean laundry (towels, linen) is provided on a weekly basis. A washing machine is available for general use. A cleaner comes once a week to clean the collective spaces, bathrooms and kitchen.

The founder, Catherine Bercusson, will arrange pick ups to and from the airport and railway station in Florence. She will also make regular trips to the local villages for shopping as well as occasional trips to Florence and Siena. Residents are welcome to join her on these outings. As the house is in the country residents may want to consider hiring a car.

Opportunities for showing work:

There is a popular restaurant in Rignana which brings people to the countryside especially at weekends. Visitors can be expected to visit the church to view artists’ work. Other opportunities can be explored.

Organisation founded in: 2013
What type of organisation are you?:
  • Artist-Run
Working Languages:
  • English
Presentation of artists’ work: Arranged on a case-by-case basis
Duration of residency:
  • Weeks: 3
Number of studios: 1
Number of artists in residence at one time: 4
Studio type and size: Shared studio
Accommodation type:
Private Room
Shared Apartment
Which disciplines does your residency cater to?:
  • Visual Art
  • Sculpture
  • Printmaking
What practical facilities does your residency offer to artists?:
  • Kitchen
  • Internet
  • Computer
What artistic facilities does your residency offer to artists?:
  • Exhibition space
  • Dance/Theatre/Performance Space
If other, please specify:

The church offers a wonderful space for exhibitions and performance, however this depends on the decision of the group of artists present at any one time as to whether they wish to put on an exhibition or performance..
Is your residency wheelchair accessible?: No
Companions Allowed:
  • N/A
  • Application process: Digital application
    Do you provide the residents with any funds associated with the residency? (e.g. stipend, fellowship, production allowance): No
    If other, please specify: Artists have the opportunity to present their work to each other. On occasions we have a tutor who teaches a particular technique.
    Selection process: N/A
    Setting: Rural
    Nearest Airport: Florence but Pisa flights are cheaper
    Nearest Train Station: Florence
    How to reach by plane: Although Florence airport is the nearest airport it is rather small and Pisa is probably the cheapest and the best option. If you fly to Pisa you can take a bus or train to Florence railway station. There are rail links to Florence from the all the main towns in Italy. The founder will pick you up from Florence airport or the railway station.
    How to reach by train: The nearest station is Florence. Catherine will pick you up from there.
    How to reach by car: (From the north) Take the Impruneta exit from the A1 motorway. Head towards Siena and take the Tavarnelle exit. Turn right, cross the bridge over the river ad take the second turning on the right. Continue in the direction of Sambucca and then take a left up to Badia a Passignano. At the Badia take a right just before you reach the small car park where you will see signs for the cantinetta di Rignana. Follow these signs along a road which is partially unmade (you will need to turn to the left and then to the right at the two intersections on your way). Once you arrive at the cantinetta continue down the hillfor a further 500 yards and you have arrived. You can use GPS entering la fattoria di Rignana.
    Street & Number: via Rignana,1
    Postal Code: 50022
    City: Greve-in-Chianti (FI)
    Country long: Italy
    via Rignana,1
    Greve-in-Chianti (FI) 50022 Italy
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