Written by: Kelly Allen
LdM Fall 2013 Fashion Merchandising major
As part of our classes here at LdM, we get the chance to tour some of the landmarks throughout Florence that hold so much of its history. So far this semester, I have been able to visit places like the Palazzo Vecchio, Palazzo Davanzati, and the Uffizi – all during class time! It’s been very special to see these museums through the eyes of my professors; they make an effort to reconstruct what life was like when these buildings were constructed, giving us the opportunity to mentally travel back in time through Renaissance Italy.
This week, my class toured the Galleria Palatina in the Palazzo Pitti. I have to admit I’m not the biggest fan of museums: if I don’t know what I’m looking at I tend to zone out…quickly. However, walking through the exhibit with my professor was a completely different experience. Normally I would hunt down the most famous pieces and move on. Instead, my professor directed our attention to the less magnificent paintings, the smaller ones that I used to see as fillers in between the more impressive pieces. She would enthusiastically point to a portrait and have us describe the garments we saw, surprising me by showing just how much we could learn from a piece of art – one I most likely would have missed had I been there on my own.
To be completely honest, my favorite part of our visit had nothing to do with reviewing the changes in costume. What I loved most was that my professor took our class on a mini side trip to the Sala Bianca, the room where Italian Fashion essentially began. I couldn’t believe I was standing in the room where the first Florentine fashion show was held! I was a little overwhelmed trying to take it all in; so many designers made their international debut in that very room! Our class will return to the Pitti Palace at the end of the semester to tour the costume gallery and surprisingly enough, I’m excited to go back.