"From a high Tuscan hill, fifty miles from Florence between Arezzo and Perugia, rises the equally ancient and noble city of Cortona. Before the city lays a vast and beautiful plain, it is flanked on either side by distant hills and valleys while behind it are towering yet fruitful mountains. Cortona has a picturesque aspect, quite a bit longer than wide, turned towards the midday sun. Her district is fertile and is abundant with all that is necessary to human life. It is Cortona marked by the Meridian-Antarctic star sign, feminine, in motion, pungent, earthy, frigid and dry and under the noble reign of..."

This is the description of Cortona in one of the first known guidebooks, compiled by Giacomo Lauro and printed in Rome in 1639. This description is still valid after nearly four hundred years. Cortona has changed very little in its urban make up, it is still there - framed in the center of a triangle which has for its corners Arezzo, Siena and Perugia, three of the richest cities of Central Italy in history and art works.


For more information about how to get there:

Arriving in Cortona

Train (extra link):



Hotel Oasi Neumann

Location of the summerschool workshops and lectures:

Palazzone di Cortona