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位置 > 首页 > 学校新闻-英文 > Kaiwen Academy High School Organizes a Cultural & Arts Study Tour to Italy

Kaiwen Academy High School Organizes a Cultural & Arts Study Tour to Italy

发布时间:2018-12-05 | 浏览次数:

In the eyes of the students, Italy is the epitome of literary, painting, sculpture, design and architectural achievements of European civilization. On the ancient walls of Italy are engraved with scenes of the commercial prosperity of ancient Venice, the heartbreaking romance of Romeo and Juliet, and the artistic masterpieces of Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo Buonarroti, luring teachers and students of KWA to explore the beauty of Italian culture.

The arts and cultural study tour to Italy brought together 23 students of Grade 9-11 and three teachers. They spent one week traveling around the country, listening to stories about its history and culture, appreciating a wide variety of artworks, enjoying DIY activities and reflecting on the uniqueness of Italian culture which was itself a fruit of cultural diversity.

After returning to Beijing, the visiting teachers and students shared with us some of their wonderful memories and impressions about the journey. Read on to find out more. The contributions below are edited based on the materials provided by Liu Xiping (teacher) and Wu Jianyong (student). 


Historical sites

The Colosseum where the blood of slaves was shed

The Colosseum is a must-visit stop in Rome. It’s too good to miss.

At the sight of it, I was immediately dumbfounded by its magnificence. It towered at the city center despite all the scars inflicted by wars and signs of aging. After we walked into it, the most eye-catching was the arena at the center which was now covered with weeds. But standing in front of it, I felt I could still hear the groaning of desperate gladiators and beasts.

I felt so disturbed by the brutality and mercilessness of killing. We should cherish today’s peace and respect the life of each other.


The Pantheon – a miracle of architecture

Michelangelo, one of the greatest architects in the human history, once claimed that the Pantheon was “a design by angel”. Before the visit, we were already very curious about it.

Then with our own eyes, we found out that the building had a nearly perfect architectural proportion inside. For one thing, the grand hall is about 43 meters in diameter and height, and the base of its dome starts from about half the height of the hall. For another, the dome curves keep stretching downward until they form a perfect spherical shape and seamlessly meet the ground. It is indeed a wonder in the history of architecture.

We were amazed by the magnificence, grandeur and sacredness of the Pantheon and the superb architectural techniques of ancient Rome. 


The Basilica of Saint Mary of the Flower

During our trip to Florence, we were most impressed by the Basilica of Saint Mary of the Flower. Unlike other famous churches in Europe, it displays a bit of feminine grace in a solemn atmosphere. It was built in the Age of Renaissance, covered with granite stones in white, red and green on the exterior, and fully embodying the artistic pursuit of the classical, elegance and freedom of the age.



Celebrities, religious culture and history

David the statue

Standing on the Michelangelo Plaza, I found the whole city in my view, including the Basilica of Saint Mary of the Flower, Giotto's Bell Tower, Bargello Museum and Ponte Vecchio.

Then the local tour guide explained to us what made Michelangelo’s David so special. It turned out that the artist was an expert in human anatomy and used his knowledge to mold natural, distinct, and strong muscles on the statue. Look, holding a stone in his right hand, David is focused and determined, ready to fight for liberty at any time.

Uffizi Gallery

The Uffizi Gallery attracts an endless stream of visitors every day, from teenagers to octogenarians. I could feel the strong passion for arts in every one of them.

Wandering in the gallery, we listened to tour guides about stories behind each piece of painting and deliberated on the message the artists tried to convey. We were like fish in a sea of arts.

I will definitely come back here if I want to learn more about arts for this is the paradise of arts. In Italy, the love for arts is shared by everyone; I could talk to others about arts anywhere, anytime I like, inside or outside a gallery.


The great poet Dante

On our trip to Florence, we stopped by the former residence of Dante, one of “the three crowns” of the Middle Ages. At the Ponte Vecchio, the tour guide told us that that was where Dante met his wife and it has become a tradition for love birds to hang locks on the rails to show their commitment. 


Design a mosaic painting and make a pizza in the Italian way

Discover the joy of creating

The first leg of our Italy tour was a mosaic workshop in Rome, where we learnt to create artworks with mosaic. The staffs welcomed us, explained patiently the mosaic technique and showed us step by step how to make a standard mosaic painting. We practiced with great care and found it difficult to sort out the pattern, design the composition or even cut the marble tile. We all took extra care to trim and cut each piece of stone. It was a test of our aesthetic taste and patience.

Of course it was also fun. We made our own mosaic souvenirs and took them home with us.


The secret to a delicious Italian-style pizza lies with dough rolling

Pizza is popular around the world. There are so many kinds of pizza: the New York-style pizza, the Chicago-style pizza, the California-style pizza, the tray pizza, thick pizza, crisp and thin pizza, and of course the Italian-style pizza we were trying to make. I learnt two things from making pizza. First, the Italian-style pizza requires a paper-thin piece of dough in order to wrap the fillings perfectly and taste crisp when baked; second, it’s important to roll the dough into a piece as much big and evenly thin as possible, which takes a lot of practice. 


Understand and internalize what has been learnt

The differences between ancient Chinese and Italian buildings

Ancient buildings in Italy including churches and museums and even Italian sculptures were mostly made of cement and marble stones, while we learned in class that ancient Chinese buildings were primarily of a wooden structure. Through observation and comparison, we found different building materials would lead to different architectural styles, structures, appearances and even durations. 


Arts and sciences are inseparable

No single subject can exist alone without the influence of others. For instance, at the Uffizi Gallery, we found two paintings: one tempera painting and one oil painting, forming a sharp contrast in texture. Teacher Liu explained that the difference was caused by the different chemicals contained in the paints they used. For another example, we tried to decipher the dome design of the Pantheon from perspectives of building materials, including their density and bearing capacity, etc. We also discussed the reasons for its perfect natural lighting. 


Before we realized it, we were at the end of the journey. The past week has flown without our notice but has been the most fulfilling week ever. Before boarding on the plane, we all turned around to catch the last sunset in this foreign land, bidding a reluctant farewell.

In retrospect, wonderful moments flashed one after another before my eyes: moments of laughter, of fun and of solemnness. We listened to the teachers and helped each other. The whole trip was full of fun.

All the places we visited, all the city walls we felt and even all the breaths of air we took in Italy have now been translated into sweet memories. Rome and Florence now are endearing memories of our smiley faces and laughter. The study tour to Italy is over, but not our stories: there’s more for us to explore ahead…






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