La vita italiana

Italy at the times of Covid-19: fighting the virus with art

Today, 18th of March , we are just starting our second week in isolation. The streets are empty and everything is incredibly silent, without the...

Daily life during the coronavirus: changes, quirks and new habits of a country on lockdown

Here we are, our second week in isolation begins. It’s strange to think how much our existence has changed in such a short period of time. It’s...

A virus won’t stop the heart of Italy

I won’t speak about data and numbers, about contagion and hospitalizations: you can get all that type of information somewhere else. I’ve even...

A Venetian Carnevale: the Marega family and the mascareri tradition

There are two words that truly define the essence of Italian Carnevale : the first is maschera , or mask; the second is — of course — Venezia. While...

Living in Rome: is La Città Eterna still an amazing place to live?

I was having my first coffee watching the early morning news today and guess what: Rome was in it, again for the wrong reasons. Apparently, the area...

The bread of Tuscan life: pane Toscano DOP

Few scents evoke an emotional response like that of bread as it rises to perfection in a hot oven. Taste buds awaken, eyes widen, stomachs rumble,...

Italian inventions: the utilitarian table fork, once a “scandalous” innovation

In most western households, forks are a basic part of a table setting — unless you’re all eating is soup. The relationship Italians have with the...

The heart and soul of Naples: history and poetry of the Quartieri Spagnoli

“Napule è mille culure, Napule è mille paure, Napule è a voce d’ ‘e creature che saglie chiano chianu e tu saje ca nun si sulo:” Naples is a thousand...
The Last Supper by Leonardo da Vinci (Milan 1495-1496) is one of the world's most famous paintings

A Visit to Leonardo’s Last Supper

T he Last Supper by Leonardo da Vinci is undoubtedly one of the most iconic, most famous works of art of all times. As such, it has always attracted...
Arrigo Cipriani., son of Giuseppe Cipriani founder of Harry’s Bar.  Photo credit: Cipriani’s Photos

An American walks into a bar…and creates a legend: Harry’s Bar

An American called Harry The Cipriani family has been serving drinks at Harry’s Bar on Venice’s iconic Grand Canal since 1931. Over the years it has...
Cervia (Ra), Romagna, the old saline of etruscan origin and some of the tools for harvesting salt. Copyright : Mario Bonotto

Italy's White Gold: The "Sweet" Salt of Cervia

Cervia, the ancient city along Italy's Adriatic coastline was once called Ficolce, and as legend has it, the name derived from Ficol, the mighty...
The commedia dell'arte developed types, also called maschere, or masks, for different stock characters. Copyright: Il Ricetto - 123RF Stock Photo

The Masks of the Commedia dell’Arte

During a recent visit to the Museo Teatrale della Scala I admired many antique prints of commedia dell’arte situations. Commedia dell’arte was a...
The mystery about what makes a Stradivari so unique remains largely unsold

Stradivari and the magic of his instruments

You don’t need to be a music expert to know the name “Stradivari” (or Stradivarius, its latinized version). Along with his lesser known, but just as...

Three Tuscan “P” excursions not to miss

After all the fabulous exhibits one can see in the heart of Florence, it is possible that a little fresh air in the countryside might just be the...

Five unspoken rules everyone follows in Italy

There is a bit of Giovanni della Casa in every Italian, you know. What do you mean, who’s he? Della Casa, that dude who wrote the Galateo, in 1558...