Students who apply to The Florence Academy of Art seek the language of Rembrandt, Velasquez, Titian, and the tools to convey their ideas with confidence through the oil or clay mediums. A common visual aesthetic draws them to the classical world (and its renaissance in Florence) to build an artistic vocabulary where beauty and humanity are intrinsic to art. To accomplish this, our methodology combines intense observation with advanced craft skills. Our curriculum comes mostly from the 19th century French academies and the teachings of master painters like Gèrôme, Bonnat and Carlos Duran. It centers on drawing (particularly drawing from the human figure), as a means to gaining skill in painting or sculpture. We also address the creative and professional position of the artist in today's world. When you walk in the door of the Florence Academy, you are assigned a north light studio space and settle into a rhythm of working that will remain constant throughout your three years of study. You spend half the day working from the figure, and half of the day in your studio, on specific exercises. As each requisite skill is acquired, a new more difficult task is assigned. By working only from life you learn to view the subject before you with accuracy, to understand the complexities of each anatomical detail, in order to draw, paint or sculpt it skillfully. Eventually, you will explore gesture, psychology, and composition, while strengthening your individual voice. You will begin to ask the questions you will face as an emerging artist: what do I want to paint? Why? What emotion do I want to convey and how? What areas of technical competence must I strengthen so as to not be held back in the articulation of my vision? Answers often come from the Uffizi, the Met, or other great museums. By exposing you to the masterpieces of humanist culture, we intend to help you develop more than technique, but the skill to transpose what is meaningful to you into your art.
The Florence Academy of Art is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD) as an undergraduate Certificate program.
To view student artwork produced over 20 years, click here.
With three locations in the US and Europe, we encourage our students to take the opportunity to study in Florence, Sweden or New York. As a student you may travel between branches to spend a trimester or year studying abroad without experiencing any difference whatsoever in methodology, curriculum or teaching style. This international opportunity can be significant to your development, and enriching both artistically and personally. At the same time, thanks to our university status, you will earn U.S. college credit for your coursework done at all three campuses.
Full-time students receive 36 hours per week of instruction, receiving one critique in the morning and one critique in the afternoon from principal faculty and assistant instructors. Instructors at the FAA are trained in the philosophy, methodology and language of instruction of The Florence Academy of Art.
For more about Founder and Director, Daniel Graves, click here.
The images displayed on this page are from students and graduates of The Florence Academy of Art. A number of these artists are now permanent faculty. To view hundreds of images of artwork by our students and graduates, please visit the Student Gallery, Alumni Gallery and Alumni Exhibitions on our website.
The Florence Academy of Art offers workshops throughout the academic year. Taught by our regular faculty, the workshops provide substantial practical information for students to take home, and allow students to experience parts of our regular painting curriculum, as well as a variety of traditional mediums, charcoal, pencil, sanguine, silverpoint and oil paint. Subjects include: Figure Drawing, Figure Painting, Portraiture, Still Life, Landscape, Figurative Sculpture and Ecorché Sculpture. Guided art history tours accompany most workshops.
The Florence Academy of Art addresses the creative and professional position of the artist in contemporary society. It is proud of its talented alumni, and committed to bringing their work to the public:
A biennial Alumni Exhibition held in Florence is a showcase of work for over 80 graduates from its Painting and Sculpture Programs; patrons and galleries attend from all over the world.
A special section on its web site called the Alumni Gallery gives each alumnus his own page with images and contact information.
Financial Aid and Scholarship Opportunities
The Florence Academy of Art is committed to helping talented students in financial need. Scholarship funding and work-study opportunities are available to second and third year students in order to help them complete the full three-year program.
The Florence Academy of Art in Sweden is approved for Student Loans and Grants. Swedish students may receive study assistance from the Swedish state through CSN B1 to fund their studies at the FAA in Sweden. Students from Norway, Denmark and Finland may use this recognition to apply for funding from their respective countries.