Seven hundred years of workshop
Just a few steps from Piazza del Duomo, on via dello Studio, there is a place where you can still breathe in the atmosphere of the old Florentine artworkshop.
Just a few steps from Piazza del Duomo, there is a place where you can still breathe the atmosphere of the old Florentine art workshop, where expert artisans are dedicated to conserving monuments with the same love and commitment as their “colleagues” from the Renaissance.
People walking by, that peer through the glass doors, can see a large room that is furnished with common machinery that can be found in every modern artisan’s workshop such as a milling machine or a mitre saw, but also older manual tools that sometimes date back a couple of centuries ago such as chisels, scalpels, hammers, marble drills that are exactly the same in every way to those which were used by the Renaissance artists.
This laboratory is none other than where the Opera del Duomo’s workshop is located.
The old location was a building behind the apse of the cathedral. Later on, it moved to the building next door, which today is where the Historical Museum is located, where sculptors would work under a great canopy that has now been removed.
In the 18th century the old courtyard was abandoned for the rotunda, which is still found today in Piazza delle Pallottole. The actual move to its present location on via dello Studio, took place sometime around the mid-nineteenth century. Theworkshop’s main purpose was once that of achieving the architectural and sculptural decoration of the Cathedral and of the Bell Tower.
Today, with the same love and commitment, the workshop is dedicated to the maintenance and the conservation of this priceless heritage that the “colleagues” who paved the way for today’s artisans, started to create seven hundred years ago.