For The Love Of It

Certaldo, Italy

Many of you know her. Linda Darty is the author of “The Art of Enameling” and was the head of metal design at East Carolina University in North Carolina. She now directs the University’s Certaldo program in the heart of Tuscany. The program provides students with college credits and acquaints them with Italian language and culture. She also offers several 2 week educational programs for people like you and me.

How did she land in Italy?

“As a sophomore in college, I flew on an airplane for the first time, traveling to Italy on a Study Abroad Program. A 21 year old looking for meaning in my life, I wanted to be immersed in another culture, in a place I knew little about. Every day in Florence, I walked the meandering, stone streets to school, stopping in cathedrals, watching artisans in their shops, inspired by everything around me. I have a vivid memory of learning to draw from looking at sculptures and paintings, but it wasn’t just the artwork… it was everything about this culture that inspired me: the way the shops closed after lunch so people could linger over long meals together, the evenings wandering in the piazzas when everything came to life and the streets filled with music and people, the reverence for beauty and detail everywhere and in everything. 38 years later I am now escorting my own students to Italy and directing this program is the most joyful thing I’ve done in my teaching career.”

(Taken from Linda’s website).

When you talk to Linda, she lights up when talking about her program. Her devotion to her students is clear and she wants none other than for the kids to experience the fulfillment she derived from learning in Florence almost 40 years ago.

Enamel pieces of Certaldo, made by students and Linda, invite you into the university courtyard.

The entrance into the University.

Marissa Saneholtz is Linda’s assistant and instructs students in beginning metal skills.

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All images and text are ©Copyright 2010-2012 Connie Fox except where indicated. All rights reserved.

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