“I always tell my students: within all of us, in the most suitable way, a tiny, magical artistic potential is hiding patiently to be discovered.”
“The task of teachers is to awaken that magic within the students and guide them to search for the true art and the talent and to teach them the joy of learning. So the teachers are not only to teach the technical know-how, but also to nourish each one’s imagination, fantasy, and the culture to quest for the true art and talent.”
Accademia Riaci Honorary President,
Raymond Riachi, founder.
The heritage of the traditional craftsmanship and the arts that flourished in Tuscany, especially in Florence, celebrated the glory of the Renaissance era as the true gem of arts. Workshops and studios of the craftsmen were the major driving power of the city’s production activities that helped Florence truly flourish as Italy’s artistic capital of the era, and they together with the merchants achieved glory and great fortune.
Numerous magnificent artistic objects were created for baptisteries in the craftsmen’s studios, often those of goldsmiths. A good example is Maestro Benvenuto Cellini, who taught his superior sculpting techniques for making a nude statue out of marble to his apprentices in a studio somewhere. Today, these commissioned crafts executed by the beloved Maestro have been preserved for centuries as a true works of art. This legacy of the wholesome and special traditions of craftsmanship, such as gold and jewelry production, sculpture, and painting, was, fortunately, lively inherited over many centuries in Florence and in the entire Tuscany region.
Upon founding the studio in 1983, Maestro Raymond Riaci had a strong vision to create a school that not only taught his techniques but enlightened young artists with the lively spirit and atmosphere of the Renaissance, to fulfill his lifelong mission as a Maestro. This was how Accademia Riaci was founded: a treasure box of traditional art and its irreplaceable techniques. The teaching secretly contains techniques unknown to any other school, and Accademia Riaci strives to nurture and develop the imagination and fantasy in every single student.
Starting as a small art studio, today the same passionate mission has lit up not only a single maestro but a spectacular team of teachers representing the best Italian artists in Florence, retaining the founder and Honorary President’s vision of tradition and spirit, expressed in the quote. Our student body has represented over 50 countries worldwide, pursuing their art in the fields of Design, Crafts, Fine Arts, Italian Language, and Italian Culinary Arts, never failing to inspire them.
Accademia Riaci School Group
Wavy mountains and beautiful coastlines; gentle hills stretch through vineyards and olive trees, creating an enchanted, picturesque, pastoral scenery of Tuscany that has never ceased to charm the travelers since ancient times. Florence is located in the central cities of beautiful Tuscany.
In the streets of Florence, there are numerous precious cultural legacies scattered throughout the city with the ambiance of its past and present fused, giving travelers for a moment, an illusion of wandering into a segment of history.
History of Florence
Tuscany was initially inhabited by a tribe highly rich in culture, said to be the ancestors of today’s Italian people, between the 10th and 8th century B.C. By 11th century A.D., Florence later transforms itself into one of the most important city-states after the occupation by the Roman Empire, followed by the ancient German invasion. By then, significant artistic movements occurred that helped culture the Artistic Giants that later emerge in the 13th Century, such as Chimabue, Giotto, and Dante.
In the early 12th Century, Florence became a self-governed commune, and later in 14th Century, inspired by realism and the modern human-centered spirit, the people started questioning the way of the medieval Christian world. This greatly influenced the decline of the absolute authority and power of the papacy. In consequence, the Renaissance movements were the first to flourish in Florence, nurturing a myriad of the greatest artists and geniuses of all times, while the city enjoyed an age of unprecedented prosperity and peace under the political leadership of the Medici family.
Although Florence temporarily becomes a republic state between 1494 and the Medici family soon regained the power, with Cosimo I appointed as the first grand Duke of Tuscany in 1570, celebrating the city’s “Golden Age.” Yet the reign does not last – the throne is taken over by Prince Lorraine of Austria Upon the death of the last Medici Family Member.
In 1860 when the ‘Risorgimento’ movement grew throughout Italy, the first unification of Italy was carried out under the reign of Vittorio Emanuele II. Florence served as Italy’s capital city since 1986 for five years.
However, ever proud of its rich culture even after the unification movement and supported by the “campanilismo” feeling (patriarchy for one’s hometown), Florence has defended and conserved all of their unique culture and rich traditions. defends her own unique culture and tradition. Just like in any other region of Italy, Florentines are especially famous for boasting bout their hometown. A chronicle writer, Dino Compani who lived in the same era as Dante, praised his country, saying “The air is fresh, the manners and hospitality of the residents are extraordinary, women are beautiful, well dressed, and the residential homes are especially beautiful.”