Agnolo Bronzino

Agnolo Gaddi

Ambrogio Lorenzetti

Andreadi di Bonaiuto

Andrea del Castagno

Andrea del Sarto

Andrea di Bartolo

Andrea Mantegna

Antonello da Messina

Antonio del Pollaiuolo

Bartolo di Fredi

Bartolomeo di Giovanni

Benozzo Gozzoli

Benvenuto di Giovanni

Bernard Berenson

Bernardo Daddi

Bianca Cappello

Bicci di Lorenzo

Bonaventura Berlinghieri

Buonamico Buffalmacco

Byzantine art



Dietisalvi di Speme

Domenico Beccafumi

Domenico di Bartolo

Domenico di Michelino

Domenico veneziano


Duccio di Buoninsegna

Eleonora da Toledo

Federico Zuccari

Filippino Lippi

Filippo Lippi

Fra Angelico

Fra Carnevale

Francesco di Giorgio Martini

Francesco Pesellino

Francesco Rosselli

Francia Bigio

Gentile da Fabriano


Domenico Ghirlandaio


Giorgio Vasari

Giotto di bondone

Giovanni da Modena

Giovanni da San Giovanni

Giovanni di Francesco

Giovanni di Paolo

Giovanni Toscani

Girolamo di Benvenuto

Guidoccio Cozzarelli

Guido da Siena

Il Sodoma

Jacopo del Sellaio

Jacopo Pontormo

Lippo Memmi

Lippo Vanni

Lorenzo Ghiberti

Lorenzo Monaco

Lo Scheggia

Lo Spagna

Luca Signorelli


masolino da panicale

master of monteoliveto

master of sain tfrancis

master of the osservanza

matteo di giovanni

memmo di filippuccio

neroccio di bartolomeo

niccolo di segna

paolo di giovanni fei

paolo ucello


piero della francesca

piero del pollaiolo

piero di cosimo

pietro aldi

pietro lorenzetti



sandro botticelli

sano di pietro


simone martini

spinello aretino

taddeo di bartolo

taddeo gaddi

ugolino di nerio



Sandro Botticelli (1444/45-1510), Annunciation (Annunciation of San Martino alla Scala) (detail), 1481. Fresco. Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence.
Photo © Gabinetto Fotografico, Polo Museale, Florence
Travel guide for Tuscany

Sandro Botticelli, Annunciation


Sandro Botticelli’s painting has become a landmark of Italian Renaissance. The delicate beauty, elegant grace, and unique charm of his frequently melancholic figures make his work the epitome of Florentine painting in the Golden Age of Medici rule under Lorenzo the Magnificent. Initially trained as a goldsmith and then apprenticed to Fra Filippo Lippi, Sandro Botticelli soon ranked among the most successful painters in Florence in the second half of the quattrocento next to Verrocchio, Ghirlandaio, and the Pollaiuolo brothers. From 1470 on, he received prestigious public commissions and established himself as a painter of large altarpieces. Throughout his life, Botticelli was in the ruling Medici family’s and their supporters’ good graces. Fulfilling their wishes for innovative decorative paintings, the master could not only rely on his personal knowledge of Florentine traditions and of ancient art, but also on definite suggestions and concepts from the circle of humanists gathered around Lorenzo de’ Medici. Held in equally high esteem as both a panel and a fresco painter, Botticelli enjoyed a high standing beyond his native Florence and was thus one of the artists summoned to decorate the walls of the Sistine Chapel in Rome by Pope Sixtus IV in 1481. It was particularly his much-discussed late work that brought out the characteristic features of his original style in an extreme manner.
Guided by the art of drawing, Botticelli followed his penchant for presenting his figures with sharp contours, strong movements, and abundant gestures, grounding his compositions on textures of lines and surfaces rather than on spaces and volumes.

This fresco originally hung over the entrance of San Martino della Scala, a hospital for those stricken with the plague. It was probably erected in gratitude for the end of the bout of plague which had been raging in Florence since 1478. The refinement of the colours and impressive composition of the pictorial space are still captivating features, despite the considerable damage that the work suffered in the 17th century. It was taken down in 1920 and moved to the Uffizi.


Sandro Botticelli (1444/45-1510), Annunciation (Annunciation of San Martino alla Scala), 1481, fresco, Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence
Photo © Gabinetto Fotografico, Polo Museale, Florence


The fresco comes from the Spedale di San Martino alla Scala, on the corner of Via della Scala and Via degli Orti Oricellari. This, created in 1313 as the Spedale of Santa Maria della Scala and subordinate to the more famous institution of the same name in Siena, was devoted chiefly to the support of abandoned children. The dedication changed in 1532 when the building was partially donated to the nuns of the convent of San Bartolommeo e San Martino on Via delle Panche, which had been destroyed during the siege of 1529. In 1536 the hospital of San Martino was definitively suppressed and merged with the Ospedale degli Innocenti (Passerini 1853, pp. 675-685; Poggi 1915-16, p. 129).
The documents, published by Poggi (1915-16, p. 130), record that Botticelli, between the April and May of 1481, made "a painting of an Annunciation which is in the loggia in front of our door of the church and the door of the convent". Godoli and Pallet, following a careful survey of the rooms, have traced the exact location of the fresco to the "space of the old loggia" and identified "the two fourteenth-century portals in pietra serena with the coats of arms of Santa Maria
della Scala, which led from the loggia into the church and the convent" to which the document alludes. The painting was set "right above the second portal" and its position explains the off-centre perspective: in fact "the perspective construction of the space I...] takes into account the presence and position of the door underneath. the vision of the angel is central for anyone coming through the door and this is the viewpoint of the whole work; in addition the pillar in the middle of the two scenes is a continuation of the stone facing of the right jamb of the same door" (Gódoli, Pallet, in Il Rinascimento 2001, p. 69).

c the fresco was reduced to two lunettes, although great respect was shown for the painting, with the firm intention of altering it as little as possible. In 1920 a restoration brought the Annunciation back to its original form, and subsequent cleanings and restorations have revived part of its splendour.
Between 1478 and 1479 a terrible outbreak of the plague struck Florence and many of the victims of the epidemic were buried in the convent (Passerini 1853, p. 683). Lightbown (1978, I, p. 52) suggests that the fresco may have been a form of ex voto for the averted danger, offered to Mary, to whom the building was dedicated.
The Annunciation is set in an interior, where Mary is surprised in the privacy of her room by a beautiful angel, depicted still in flight, with his wings raised and hair caressed by the wind. Kneeling with her eyes lowered, the Virgin expresses her humbIe acceptance of the \\ill of God, and there seems to be a repeated allusion to her purity in the furnishings of the room, through the use of white for the canopy, drape and pillow of the bed. The construction of perspective is skillful and the pillars allow the space to be divided into
several rooms, the entrance with the Angel, the antechamber with the Virgin Mary and, in the background, the intimacy of the chamber itself, with the large bed, to which corresponds, on the other side, the garden. The off-centre perspective, the marked foreshortening of the floor and the bipartition of the spaces link this fresco to Pollaiolo's Annunciation, (Gemäldegalerie, Staatliche Museen, Berlin, c. 1470), on which Sandro seems in part to have drawn. (N.P.)


[1] Nicoletta Pons, in Botticelli: From Lorenzo the Magnificent to Savonarola, Skira, Milano 2003, p. 114. Catalogue published in conjunction with the major Fall 2003 exhibition organized by the Musée du Luxembourg in Paris.


Podere Santa Pia is a beautiful stone farmhouse only 2 km away from Castiglioncello Bandini. The main house is spacious, comfortable and well furnished and offers its guests a breathtaking view over the Maremma hills. It is the ideal location for those who wish to enjoy total privacy.
Podere Santa Pia is a wonderful place to relax and enjoy the treasures of Tuscany, close to the Tyrrhenian coast but set in an oasis of green and abundant nature. The Tyrrhenian coast offers many beautiful beach resorts where you can spend a relaxing day at the beach (1 hour drive). Enjoy this trip along the beautiful Tyrrhenian coast and its landscapes...

Holiday houses in Tuscany | Podere Santa Pia | Residency in Tuscany for writers and artists



Podere Santa Pia
Podere Santa Pia, view from the garden
on the valley below

Century-old olive trees, between Podere Santa Pia and Cinigiano

Tombolo di Feniglia
Monte Argentario, view from Scansano

Sunsets in Tuscany

The house is set on the top of a lush hill, in a private yet not isolated spot, with breath-taking views of the sea, until Monte Argentario and the island of Monte Christo.
A trip along the Tyrrhenian coast

The Tyrrhenian Sea, a popular holiday destination in the Mediterranean, lies on the western side of the Italy coastline, northern end of Sicily and eastern side of Corsica. Going to the seaside on the northern Tyrrhenian coast, in Tuscany and Latium, is a unique experience. The name “Tyrrhenian” was derived from the Italian term “Mar Tirreno.” This Italian term, in turn, has Etruscan origins and historians believe that this name was given to the island when the Etruscan established control of an area along the coast where Tuscany is located today. The Tyrrhenian Sea was then referred to as the “Sea of Etruscans” and has always been associated to the famed Tuscan Coast, along with the rugged allure of known Italian destinations like Sardinia, Corsica and Elba.
Podere Santa Pia is suitably located only 20 kilometers from Paganico and the highway Grosseto - Siena.
You can easily reach some of the most beautiful beaches of Tuscany.

Tuscany Beaches in Maremma | [1] From Principina a Mare to Piombino

Tuscany Beaches in Maremma | [2] From Principina a Mare to Ansedonia