Carnevale: Traditional or Contemporary?

Screen Shot 2015-05-19 at 10.59.20 AMEvery year, right before of Lent, Italy celebrates Carnevale. The festivals feature masks, parades, confetti, and people relaxing in anticipation of the forty days of reflection and “moderation” before Easter. This year, many NYU Florence students went to one of the most popular Carnevale destinations, Viareggio. There, we saw the floats which the citizens craft year round for a grand parade of political satire and multicultural celebration. The Carnevale of Viareggio started in 1873 and has been an ongoing tradition ever since. However, the floats’ commentaries on the state of affairs today seem to align with the purpose of contemporary art.

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The ancient and the modern

Florence has benefitted from extensive measures of preservation. Architecture built hundreds of years ago remains sturdy and resistant, and has found a new life in the modern world. Telephone wires, gutters, satellite dishes, and more are indicators of modernity on a medieval structure. Contemporary Florence, therefore, is about the marriage of the antiquity and the modern.

Photo essay by NYU Florence student

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Sketching Florence

As an architect I enjoy traveling and exploring new places, cultures, art, and architecture. I record all of my experiences in sketchbooks that I carry with me everywhere I go. Within its pages I create an archive that documents the places I go, the people I meet, and the things I find. I feel that drawing, meeting people, and collecting things leave a much more lasting impression in our memories than photos taken by our phones or cameras. – Nasser Alzayani