10th - 14th June 2024
9.30am-12.30pm/2pm-5pm each day
Todi, Umbria, Italy
Watercolor in paper
Class Sizes
Class Status
Painting Experience
All levels ( beginners-advanced)

Gallery of artist's work

Frances Middendorf is a painter who lives in Italy and Rhode Island and teaches drawing at the Rome Art Program in Rome and at the RISD Museum in Providence. Born in New York, Frances attended the Rhode Island School of Design (BFA), School of Visual Arts,
NYC (MFA) and the New York Studio School. The Downing Yudain Gallery in Stamford, Connecticut and the Denise Bibro gallery in New York represents her work.

Following a 15 year commercial art career working for clients such as the New York Times, Newsweek and the Vivian Beaumont Theater at Lincoln Center, Frances Middendorf continued her learning at the New York Studio School. She moved to Italy in 1997 to
study with Nicolas Carone and decided to stay. Nicolas Carone (1917-2010) was an articulate describer of the teachings and tenants of Hans Hoffman as well as a friend to many Italian painters particularly Giorgio Morandi. By emphasising “plasticity” or the link
between surface tension and three dimensionality (Hoffman’s push-pull), Carone guided Frances’ painting from the narrative to the poetic.

Frances has lived in Florence, has a studio in Umbria and now resides part time in Rome. Frances has exhibited her paintings and drawings in France, New York and Italy with recent solo shows at the Museum Casa Natale di Cesare Pavese in Piedmont, the National Arts Club, the Downing Yudain Gallery and the Denise Bibro Gallery. Frances credits her knowledge of drawing to her artist and art collector father and to New York Sculptor/Painter Bruce Gagnier who illuminated Carone’s teachings with his love of art history, anatomy and pictorial movement.

Her book “Sul Belbo” too will be published soon with 30 drawings accompanying the poetry of the Italian author Cesare Pavese.

Art Class Description

Working from locally and regionally sourced textile designs and Italian paintings, the students will explore many ways to incorporate design, texture and tactile qualities into watercolor painting. There will be a model as well to explore integrating the still and moving figure with pattern and cloth. The class will begin with value studies in liquid graphite dust and evolve into full hand-made watercolor. Locally made watercolor paper will be provided so that the texture of the paper itself will be considered.

Materials To Bring

  • Sketchbook
  • Bristol matte finish paper Kneaded eraser
  • Support board for paper
  • Mix of erasers-white, kneaded and stick
Optional but recommended:
  • Staedtler mechanical pencil
  • Drawing leads F
  • Mechanical pencil sharpener  
There will be an additional 50 euro materials fee to provide the handmade watercolor paper and the watercolour pigments.

Find out more in our information pack

You might find it easier to digest all of this and assess your accommodation and flight options using our information pack. Just fill in the form below to receive the pack in your inbox to peruse at your leisure.