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Erin Murray '09G, whose painting is above left, was particularly interested in graffiti. "You typically think of Italy as beautiful and picturesque, but Ascoli is a combination. You see beautiful landscapes and old Roman buildings, and then there's gangs and graffiti and cars. When we went out to paint, we would see something brand new sitting beside something that had been there for 2,000 years."

LIGHT AND COLOR: Anna Scalera '00, sketching above right in the Cloister of San Francesco, was struck by the light. "There's a quality of light there that's different from other places," she says. "As I was painting, I was focusing on the light on the landscape and how the light creates color."

"In Florence, I went to an exhibition of Giovanni Fattori's etchings and paintings," says Jason Bombaci '07. "The etchings were what stuck with me the most. The quality of line and variation of mark is just beautiful. I bought a catalogue of his work and have tried to bring some of his mark making and sense of contrast to my own oil paintings since I've been back stateside."

HEART OF THE CITY: The central square of Ascoli Piceno, a city in the Marche region of Italy, is named Piazza del Popolo (Square of the People) but is colloquially called "the living room" because residents spend so much time there. The city was founded about 1,000 B.C. In the Middle Ages, it had more than 200 church towers; about 50 still exist.

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