Ali Matteini

a life creative

Lives Creative – The Printmaking Sisters, Firenze

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Lives Creative will be a weekly-occurring post, delivered Thursdays, highlighting and promoting an artist, writer, maker or downright creative person in the Monte Amiata region of Southern Tuscany.

Having said that, the first post off the rank is about The Printmaking Sisters, Robin Ezra and Annie Day, of the Southern Highlands of NSW, Australia. In past years I’ve partaken in their classes and workshops, both in Australia and this year in Italy.

Since the sisters have been offering the printmaking workshop each year in May – for the last 6 years – at Il Bisonte in Firenze, I’ve included their profile in Lives Creative. Though not exactly the south of Tuscany, Firenze isn’t far away from our gorgeous mountain.

The Printmaking Sisters

At Il Bisonte
Together Annie and Robin teach printmaking techniques that, while adhering to classical etching, intaglio, etc, don’t require the use of harmful chemicals and acid etchants used in traditional methods of printmaking. This means that printmaking can be carried out safely at home using materials that are readily accessible, and far less likely to cause adverse reactions or cause accumulative harm to lungs, eyes and skin. Additionally, the methods are fast and ‘doable’ meaning even the most lax hobby artist or  – ahem, jewellery maker – can practice a casa.



Robin and Annie will be teaching their seventh Florence printmaking workshop from 16 May until 4 June 2016.

In their own words, here’s a little more of what you can expect in the Florence workshops with The Printmaking Sisters:

“Come and study Creative Printmaking Techniques in the beautiful surrounds of Florence, the art capital and cultural epicentre of the western world.

Participants at any level of experience are welcome from beginners to practicing printmakers, book artists, papermakers and painters.

Enjoy 60 hours of studio based teaching where you will receive personalised instruction alongside other printmakers in a relaxed and welcoming environment.

During the workshop we will take the mystery out of our printmaking processes, creating plates by various methods.

Il Bisonte is situated in the picturesque neighbourhood of San Niccolo, a stone’s throw away from such cultural delights as the Pitti Palace, the Uffizzi, Ponte Vecchio, Santa Croce and the Piazzle Michelangelo.

The school studios are well equipped with numerous etching presses, hotplates and inking tables.
​In addition, there is a comfortable outdoor courtyard, and historic Stella presses are on permanent exhibit at the entrance.

​Students can also enjoy browsing the workshop’s impressive print collection, as well as viewing rotating shows in the Il Bisonte gallery.

The course includes: 60 hours of tuition, welcome dinner, a comprehensive set of notes, most materials and a walking tour with an art historian.”

Screen Shot 2015-12-17 at 15.42.10

After these gratuitous shots of the glory that is Firenze, I’ve included further links to the Printmaking Sisters’ website, video interviews and a few other resources. Hope to see you at the studio of Il Bisonte in May 2016.





IMG_7012 IMG_7414 DA


Printmaking Sisters

Highlights from the 2015 Workshop

Il Bisonte Firenze

Video Interview on Waterless Lithography

Marsbrook Holiday Ideas

*Photographs © Alison Boyd, Robin Ezra, Annie Day

Find out about other Lives Creative of Monte Amiata – I’m adding to the list all the time. If you’d like to be featured here, please use the form below and I’d be glad to make contact with you and add you to our growing bank of creative people.



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A Presto,

Cheers and Ciao,

Ali 🙂

Image Alison Matteini ©

Image Alison Matteini ©

2 comments on “Lives Creative – The Printmaking Sisters, Firenze

  1. Pingback: Tours Truly, Tuscany and The Printmaking Sisters | Ali Matteini

  2. Pingback: 10 Day Precious Metal Clay & Mixed Media Workshop – Tours Truly, Tuscany

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