Tuscany’s Medieval Manhattan – San Gimignano

Painting San Gimignano

San Gimignano

Ever since I saw it in the 1999 film “Tea with Mussolini” I’ve always loved the idea of San Gimignano. The idea that the towns merchants in an explosion of competition all went tower building crazy and left us with a fabulous legacy of towers. In its heyday there were 72 towers of various height, of which only 14 still remain, however even this is a remarkable achievement when you consider how many other cities, such as Florence and Bologna have lost pretty much all of theirs over the centuries.

The painting measures 16cm x 36cm and is a watercolour and ink picture on heavy cartridge paper. Like the others in the series it isn’t a slavish rendition of the town but a feeling and sense of its towering presence, over the surrounding countryside of olive groves, vines and cyprus trees.

If you’re interested in this or any other of my paintings please contact me at


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