Florence is a city that is often times celebrated for its art. The art made for and in Florence, however, has a spiritual context
and in order to better appreciate it, one must know the religious meaning each work.
This is why the Opera di Santa Maria del Fiore has organized 4 walks through the city
in search of art and faith that has marked the city's vast cultural heritage. Called Itineraries of Art and Faith
, these walks, held in collaboration with the Diocese of Florence
, offer a reflection on the profound link between faith and art in Florence. All four walks culminate in the Santa Maria del Fiore Cathedral of Florence
, where, after completing the walk to discover the relics in the historic centre, pilgrims will gather in meditation and prayer before the altar set up specially in the main aisle, featuring Altarpiece of Santa Reparata (which was made in Giotto's workshop in circa 1305).Mary's Motherhood is the first of the four itineraries
. It takes pilgrims to the places of Marian devotion, like the largest Marian shrine of Florence and the Almond Door of the Cathedral, a masterpiece of Nanni di Banco and teachers several generations including Donatello. The second itinerary is Bishops in Florence
, whose theme is the churches that have hosted the Episcopal seat. From the basilica of San Lorenzo, chosen as the first cathedral of Florence by San Zanobi (398-429); the church of San Salvatore al Vescovo, behind the Bishop's Palace, passing by the Baptistery and Santa Reparata; and finally, to the great building that is the Cathedral of Florence. The third itinerary is a journey through the places of Charity in Florence
, from Orsanmichele, the building that best represents the charity in the Christian experience with Our Lady of Grace by Bernardo Daddi (1347) to Giotto's Campanile.
The importance and presence of religious orders are the subject of the fourth and final itinerary, Men and God Serving the City,
which helps to understand how the different forms of spirituality gave rise to profound Christian experiences related to the historical events of the city.Through prayer and meditation in these places, and in front of the works of art, pilgrims can experience a unique journey of faith and uncover a deeper reading of the many masterpieces in the city.Itineraries
1) Mary's Motherhood (SS. Annunziata, Spedale degli Innocenti, Santa Maria Maddalena de’ Pazzi, Ospizio dell’Orbatello, Duomo “The Almond Door”)
2) Bishops of Florence (San Lorenzo, San Salvatore al Vescovo, Baptistery, Column of San Zanobi, Santa Reparata, Duomo “relief of the Annunciation”)
3) Charity in Florence (Orsanmichele, Loggia del Bigallo, Palazzo della Misericordia, Santa Maria Nuova Hospital, San Martino dei Buonomini Oratory, Giotto's Bell Tower)
4) Men and God serving the city (Badia Fiorentina, the Church of Santa Croce, Palazzo Vecchio, Orsanmichele)For Information and Reservationswww.operaduomo.firenze.itOPA - Art and Culture Centre
Piazza San Giovanni 7, Florence
Tel 055 282226 - Fax 055-2741561
Monday to Saturday, 9am - 6pmStarting point of walks and pick-up point of materials for the pilgrim are located here:
OPA - Art and Culture Centre
Piazza San Giovanni 7
Open to the public every day, 9am to 6pmGuides for pilgrims
Pilgrims can pick up, free of charge, a guide containing the 5 leaflets in Italian. The guide contains an introduction and four information sheets on each itinerary, as well as a map for pilgrims. Guides can be picked up at the OPA - Art and Culture Centre, in Piazza San Giovanni 7.Pilgrim's Card
The Pilgrim's Card is personal card that must be presented at each stage of each itinerary, where they will get a stamp. The card entitles pilgrims to reduced rates in places where there is an entrance fee, as well as other benefits (discounts or free gifts) available at the OPA - Art and Culture Centre.