Florence Uffizi sends masterpieces to villages around Tuscany

Florence gallery launches Uffizi Diffusi project in long-term plan to combat over-tourism.

The Uffizi Galleries in Florence, home to the world's finest collection of Renaissance art, has launched a radical project to 'scatter' works from its priceless collection around the Tuscan region.

Based on the Alberghi Diffusi model, which involves 'spreading' accommodation across a whole village rather than in one building, the ambitious plan will see the Uffizi turn Tuscany into one giant gallery.

The scheme is part of a longer term bid to combat over-tourism - before the sector recovers from the blow dealt to it by the coronavirus pandemic - by moving tourists away from the Uffizi to lesser-visited towns and villages in the surrounding region.

The first step of the project, titled Terre degli Uffizi, offers five temporary exhibitions in Tuscan towns this summer, dedicated to the 700th anniversary of the death of Dante Alighieri and underlining the links between the region and the great poet.

The hilltop towns and villages chosen for the prestigious Uffizi project include S. Godenzo, Anghiari, Poppi, Montespertoli and Castiglion Fiorentino.

Behind the ground-breaking idea is the Uffizi director Eike Schmidt, a man known for thinking outside the box, who told CNN Travel of the importance of context and landscape in the project.

"To see a work by Andrea del Castagno in the landscape where Andrea del Castagno came from - I think that's worth a trip from California, Warsaw, Australia, or Barcelona."

The Terre degli Uffizi exhibitions will run from various dates beginning in July and ending in January. For full details see Uffizi website.

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Address Piazzale degli Uffizi, 6, 50122 Firenze FI, Italy

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Florence Uffizi sends masterpieces to villages around Tuscany

Piazzale degli Uffizi, 6, 50122 Firenze FI, Italy