Dear artists and travelers,

This brochure contains basic information about Philip Buller’s annual painting retreat in Europe. For those of you who don't know Philip Buller, he is a professional painter and teacher with an MFA in painting and drawing. He has been working in watercolor, oil, pastel and other media for over twenty years. Buller's teaching practice has included workshops, classes at Santa Rosa Junior College, Sonoma State University, and private classes in his Freestone, California studio.

“The longer I paint the more I realize that the practice of seeing is at the center of the work of painting. There is something about having two full weeks in a foreign land which can awaken a possibility for clear seeing. From our comfortable lodgings outside the small medieval town of Montopoli, free from the structure of our daily lives, we have time to explore both outer and inner territory. Moving in a different landscape, we hear the music of a different language. Surrounded by the summer light, the soft green hills, and the patterns of a great cultural history, our senses feel awakened. Relaxing into this space and time, we can open toward the possibility of deep learning. For these reasons I am inviting artists with similar interests to join me in an opportunity for satisfying work and spirited conversation in this beautiful and ancient setting.”

Concept: This intensive painting retreat will be for painters at any level. It is an opportunity to immerse oneself in the process of painting, as well as in the great history of the Italian Renaissance. There will be ten teaching days, six hours each. Most of the instruction will be on an individual basis. However, Buller will give demonstrations and lead discussions and critiques as the issues of mutual interest become clear. We will be visiting Florence and other surrounding historic sites. Class sizes have varied between six and fourteen. 

Dates and Location: June 11-25: The area in which we will be living and painting is 25 miles from Florence, 22 miles from Pisa, and a short drive from Sienna. The closest town to our villa is Montopoli in Val d’Arno, an old medieval village in the heart of Tuscany. This is not a tourist area, so it is possible to find old abandoned villages and little towns still preserved from the middle ages. At the same time we are within easy reach of important historical cities like Florence, Lucca, Viareggio, Volterra, San Gimigniano, Pisa, and Sienna.

Accommodations: We will be staying in an old stone farm house built in 1760 on a hilltop amidst olive, cypress, mulberry, and acacia trees in the Tuscan countryside. Our section of the villa, Bramasole & Ginestra, consists of two spacious flats, each with a kitchen/dining room, a common room, either two or three large bedrooms, and a bathroom, one of which has a large bathtub. The grounds are private and very beautiful and include a new swimming pool, an old hayloft, a butter cellar, outdoor oven, eating areas and orchards with paths leading away along the ridges. Imagine yourself walking along the gravel roads in the golden light with the wind whispering through the tall, dark cypress trees on either side.

Cost: Food (two meals per day), lodging, and tuition, will be $2800.  Double occupancy (add 400. for a single room) for the two weeks. To Reserve a Space: A deposit of $400. is necessary to reserve your space. Please call for an interview.

Travel: For flight options or for help purchasing your transportation contact Karen Chieppa at Global Vision Travel: (707) 823-1080, e-mail: gvt@pon.net.

We would be happy to answer any questions that you might have. 

You can reach us at Philip M. Buller, 12425 Ramsey Road, Sebastopol, CA 95472, by telephone at: (707) 829-3839, e-mail pbuller@earthlink.net. Or visit the web site www.philipbuller.com for more information. We look forward to talking with you.

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