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Sistine Chapel



Who we are: We are an accredited, private, and international Visual Arts Academy located in the heart of Italy. We were founded in 2009 and strive to preserve an artistic tradition passed down to us from the Renaissance Masters. We expand on that tradition with innovative programmes that emphasise the development of practical skills and imbue our students with significant advantages in a 21st century job market. 


What we do:  We train artists from all over the world through our unique methodology of applied knowledge. Our students become professional artists that can paint and draw both from models and from imagination. After completing their curriculum, our students return home armed with knowledge, technique, new perspectives on their world, and a portfolio that is ready for presentation to potential employers or clients.


Our vision: We dream of recreating the Renaissance in the modern world through profound artistic expression. This vision is realised by teaching the values and philosophies that underpin classical art while also maintaining the highest standards of excellence for technique and practical application. 


Our mission: To empower and train students in the fundamental skills and competencies necessary to become professionals in the field of Visual Arts. 


Our values:  We are sincere in our commitment to our students. We value one-on-one time between students and teachers. We also value a customisable and personalised approach to learning. Accordingly, we work in small groups of 10–15 people. We value each individual student’s nourishment and growth, and the development of their unique artistic style and taste. We value self-discipline, both inside and outside the classroom, as we believe that this is essential for evolving of the character. By teaching these values to our students, we help them distinguish themselves in today’s ever more competitive job market. 



History of the academic method

The Florence Classical Arts Academy was founded in 2009 by its Director Nadezhda Molugova and a select group of accomplished academicians. Our teaching methods and curriculum are cutting edge, while also representing an unbroken chain of artistic tradition stretching back over 300 years. The Academy is located in the idyllic Italian city of Florence, the birthplace of the Renaissance and an inspiration to untold generations of artists.


The story of our teaching method begins over 300 years ago when, in an effort to modernise Russian society, the Imperial Court began sending Russia’s most talented young artists to Italy and France to learn from the masters of the day. In addition to sending students abroad, the world’s most renowned masters were also welcomed into Russia where they taught, inspired, and created masterpieces that still survive today. The legacy of this historic cultural interaction is particularly evident when touring the city of St. Petersburg, which was founded during the same period and remains Russia’s cultural capital. Fortunately, the fruits of this interaction were not ephemeral, and instead the masters of Western Europe and the Russian artists they taught laid the foundations for new, Russian schools of art. With the passage of time, this artistic tradition was developed and built upon by great artists such as Repin, Surikov, Serov, Levitan, Vasnetsov and Kuindzhi.


The Russian schools flourished and continued to pass down their tradition from generation to generation, even as cultural exchange between Russia and the West slowed to a near halt for much of the 20th century. At the same time, in Western Europe, a plethora of emergent artistic movements gained extraordinary popularity. As a result, much of the classical tradition was lost or superseded by new methods as young artists were drawn to new artistic movements.


In a sense, both the West’s own technical knowledge, and its knowledge of the underlying philosophies of classical art were preserved for posterity by the Russian schools. This unique tradition of excellence is visible in our students’ work and has been formally recognised in our academic accreditation by the Region of Tuscany. We are restoring our knowledge and techniques to the world in a way that creates synergy with modern life and opportunity for our students.


Our faculty is comprised of professors that graduated from top world academies and are themselves highly skilled artists. Our students are being nourished and taught in a friendly and supportive environment, while still working diligently to realise their full potential as artists. We bring our rich tradition of classical art to life in ways that remain relevant to the modern world and empower students in their careers as artists. ​

main studio


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