About Marsha as a Tour Guide


Tuscan Spring Landscape     Marsha Winsryg   2006


I am a visual artist, educator, musician, storyteller and puppeteer and have operated a small non profit, the African Artists’ Community Development Project,  since 2004. The proceeds from my tours help sustain this work.

In 2005, my husband, 15 year-old daughter and I decided to spend a year abroad in Florence, Italy to learn Italian and to experience life and art in that beautiful ancient city shaped by the Western Renaissance. We were able to do this because Paul taught that year at the International School of Comics in Florence.

It was much more difficult than I imagined to navigate the foreign systems and language. So, we made mistakes, asked questions, took linguistic risks and ended up with an intimate sense of Florence, wonderful friends and neighbors, and very serviceable Italian. We focused on our favorite occupations : cooking and eating, art and architecture, and walking.

My friend Fabrizio Gori, owner of Osteria Toscanella, is an artist, restauranteur and Florentine of many generations. Thanks to him I saw many beautiful paintings set in modest, unheralded churches, learned to see precursors of the renaissance in the patterns of 11th century church facades. On a Sunday we would eat delectable Tuscan dishes in his garden and eventually improve my Italian.  He will be our guide on several occasions.

Since then I have returned almost every year to continue this relationship with the past. I want to show you my favorite buildings and paintings, my favorite hikes through the countryside, markets, restaurants and how to cook my favorite foods.  The most important lesson  that year was how to slow down and savor the simple pleasures of life: family, food, friends and the incredible beauty that has been cultivated here through the centuries.

These are the things around which I have built my tours.


MW drawing in Piazza della Signoria


{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment