Italy Painting Workshop & Art Retreat

Villa Italy PaintingWorkshop

week workshop in private villa – September 29 – October 6, 2023
SEPTEMBER 20- 27, 2024

Spark your true creative essence painting in the heart of Italy. Capture the 360 degree views of the sea, fields, and hills of Italy. All from the ease and comfort of a grand villa and atelier and the extensive grounds. Conveniently located just 1 1/2 hours from the Rome airport at the border of Tuscany and Umbria. Gain mastery while expressing the exquisite light and expressive colors native to Italy.

Immerse yourself in the beauty of Italy in your private villa. Find the perfect spot in the art studio or among the olive groves to paint. Not a landscape painter? No problem, we can find some other fun painting lessons – such as color, composition, or customized to your needs.

Everything is convenient at the villa. Rest in the comfort of the well-appointed rooms. Savor the sumptuous local cuisine prepared fresh for you daily. Discuss painting and art with new friends under the stars. Unwind in one of the several comfortable living spaces in the spacious villa. The art retreat is designed to allow you to fully relax and expand while experiencing exhilarating outings and valuable lessons in painting.

Venture out and explore the Region. It’s not all about painting. You can make the most of your painting vacation and go off exploring on your own or with the group to take in the Renaissance Art, ancient Etruscan historic sites and other interests in the region. The villa is at the outskirts of the medieval village of Farnese which has many intriguing points of interest and restaurants. Visit the wineries, olive presses or for a little pampering head to one of the many natural hot springs.

  • Italy Painting Workshop Jill Nichols
  • Inside the Villa, Farnese, Italy
  • Studio at the villa
  • plein air in the olive groves
  • New friends enjoying conversation
  • Sunrise at the villa
  • Italy Villa
  • Sunset at the villa
  • Villa, Farnese, Italy
  • Entry to villa
  • Breezeway, Villa, Farnese, Italy
  • Balcony, Villa, Farnese, Italy
  • Ceiling frescoes, Villa, Farnese, Italy
  • Comfort and antiques Villa, Farnese, Italy
  • Restorative spaces, Villa, Farnese, Italy
  • Hallway Villa, Farnese, Italy
  • Bathroom, Villa, Farnese, Italy
  • Cascading in the sun at the Villa, Farnese, Italy
  • Italy Painting Workshop & Retreat
  • Outdoor dining at the Villa, Farnese, Italy
  • Villa
  • Side of Villa, Farnese, Italy
  • Close-up Villa, Farnese, Italy
  • Italy Painting Workshop & Retreat
  • Olive Groves
  • Salon Villa
  • Bedroom at villa
  • Bedroom villa
  • Bedroom, Villa, Painting Workshop & Retreat Italy
  • Farnese Villa aerial view

The private villa is located at the intersection of the fertile ground of Lazio, Umbria and Tuscany, abundant with olive groves. You will be sure to bring home amazing memories and paintings!

Each attendee’s experience will be optimized. Internationally recognized artist, Jill Nichols will be assisting you in honing your skills.

Your internationally acclaimed instructor Jill Harrington Nichols, MFA, leads painting workshops in her home state of Connecticut, USA, Italy, and online. Accustomed to teaching students at all levels, Jill has a way of instilling confidence and encouraging students to take risks with exceptional outcomes. Jill’s demos and talks will reveal the secrets of creating a successful painting. 

She has received awards from the U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, and Connecticut Office of the Arts. Her commissioned painting of Washington D.C. appeared as a backdrop for former FBI Director James Comey’s interview on “Face the Nation” while another appeared on a mini-series, “The Comey Rule”. Her artworks Phi, and Juno, which embrace the divine feminine are installed in the Vatican Observatory Museum.

Jill will be working with each painter individually to enhance their painting practice and in achieving individual goals. We will investigate historic and contemporary approaches to painting techniques.

Jill’s artwork is on exhibit at the Vatican Observatory, Castel Gandolfo, Italy.

At left, print “Phi” in the Vatican Observatory. At right, Jill Nichols with her painting, “Phi”, and the Director of the Vatican Observatory, Brother Guy.

“The week in Farnese as part of the workshop filled our senses and left an edible mark that won’t be soon forgotten. From the early morning meditation walks, the tantalizing and delectable freshly cooked local cuisine, the wonderful company of newfound friendships, to the wealth of knowledge and craft shared by an outstanding mentor and teacher – it was pure Italian and artistic perfection!”

Cindy M
Even the food is a work of art.
Figs picked from the villa property.

A few of the sights nearby!

Italy Painting Workshop & Retreat

Live the Dream – Register Today!

Paint, relax, and discover Italy – All-inclusive
September 29 – October 6, 2023
September 20- 27, 2024
All-inclusive 8 Days – 7 nights accommodations
5 days OF instruction, all levels, beginner to advanced
5 days OF fresh local cuisine & regional wine

Painter $3250.
Non Painting Companion, $1750.
Deposit of $500. will hold your spot,
full payment due by August 29th.

Planning ahead for 2024 -A $500. deposit by 12-31-23 to hold prices. Refundable up until 60 days prior.

Shop Now – Italy Painting Workshop & Retreat

Please note that transportation for arrival on September 29th Friday afternoon and departure on October 6th between the villa and Fiumicino Airport, Rome is provided *.

*A fee of $500. per party, roundtrip applies for times other than listed and for all registrations after July 1st.

A VIP Tour of the Vatican Observatory to view Jill’s artwork, Papal Gardens, and the Palace in Castel Gandolfo is available to Jill’s Workshop participants at an additional fee of $125. (includes transportation)

Complimentary Transportation from Farnese to the optional Bonus Umbria Weekend Workshop on October 6th and to the airport on October 9th. Please see the Bonus Weekend Workshop, October 6-9, 2023 details below.

Note that airfare is not included.

Daily Snapshot

  • Paint the sunrise (optional) -this will be a quiet time of painting without instruction
  • Breakfast, in the Italian style of sweet and savory 
  • A moment of quiet reflection and walking meditation to ease the mind and focus 
  • Morning immersed in painting
  • Lunch served 
  • Rest, relaxation and revitalization
  • Capture the Italian landscape bathed in the late afternoon light or go on outing or take a siesta
  • Savor a sumptuous dinner, abundant with the region’s fresh flavors

A complete updated list of suggested materials will be provided upon registration

  • Easels are provided in the studio. Bring a portable easel to paint en plein air
  • Canvas and solvent will be provided.
  • Demos will be in oil paints. All other mediums are fine, such as watercolors, acrylics, caseins, gouache, multi-media, and pastels. A list of suggested colors and other materials and travel tips will be provided after registration. A variety of oil paints will be at your disposal for experimenting with subtle temperature/value shifts.
A Big Thank You to the Following for their Generosity in supplying samples of their Quality Products
Chelsea Classical Studio Renaissance Formula Lavender Essence Brush Cleaner and Soap
Golden New Slow Drying Open Acrylics and Williamsburg Oil Paints

Find out more!

Find out more about the Italy Workshop and Retreat by filling out this simple form.


How do I get there?

Book your flight into Fiumicino Airport, Rome, Italy – round trip transportation will be provided on Friday afternoon September, 29th to the villa and for the return to Fiumicino on Friday or to the weekend workshop in Umbria on October 6th. If you miss the transports there are other options such as car rental, private-ride for $500., or carpooling. Please coordinate this with Jill before your travel. We recommend renting a car, very simple to do with your driver’s license. The trip to the villa is a very easy drive. Driving is on the same side as in America.

Note that air transportation costs are not included.

I’m traveling alone, is anyone else?

This retreat is a wonderful opportunity to meet and make new friends and a friendly and welcoming environment for the solo traveler… We will introduce the workshop attendees to each other via email previous to travel.

What is your teaching style? Jill will be working one on one with students and well as holding a few demos and talks that will review color, composition, perspective, overlapping, and often overlooked aspects, and her own insights into what goes into a successful painting.

Is the Studio at the Villa? Yes, the studio is only a short walk across the courtyard from the main house. The grounds and views are extensive and surrounded by olive groves. There are some photos above to give you an idea of where you will spend 8 spectacular days.

Where is Italy is it? An hour and a half north of the Rome airport (FCO), on the outskirts of the medieval village of Farnese, VT. Here is the link to Google maps so you can see exactly where it is:

Map – FCO airport to Farnese, Italy

Added Bonus Weekend Workshop in Umbria

October 6th – October 9th , 2023

Italy is Calling You – Join Jill in Umbria from October 6th – October 9th for this Four-Day Bonus Weekend Workshop.

This Fall Immerse yourself in the Italian Countryside with the bountiful harvest of olives and wine while painting and exploring artistic treasures.

Enjoy Saturday and Sunday Brunch with Prosecco
Paint on Saturday with instruction from Jill
Dinner off the grill on the terrace with regional wine Saturday Night
Sunday Morning Art Conversation
Tour of Assisi after Sunday Brunch
Courtesy Transfers from Farnese or Fiumicino airport on Friday October 6, and Monday, October 9th (departs at 5 AM).

Purchase as an extension of the week in the Farnese Workshop for an incredible value of only $900. Price includes courtesy transfers from Farnese/FCO and to FCO airport.

Contact Jill

If purchased separately as a stand-alone workshop, without the Week Workshop in Farnese, the cost, is $1200. Courtesy Transfers to and from FCO airport included. Please purchase this option through the ICARTS website.

Jill’s Farnese, Italy Paintings and Demos

Ask Jill

5 responses to “Italy Painting Workshop & Art Retreat”

  1. Dear Madelane,

    Thank you for your interest in the September workshop in Italy. I hope that you can make it this year, 2022, September 23-30! Bring you oils, acrylics and gouache paints! You can apply a lot of the oil techniques to gouache and acrylics. In addition, I would recommend bringing your watercolors if you have some. I often enjoy combining the transparency of the watercolors with the opacity of the gouache. Once you are registered I will send a suggested list of materials and more detailed information about the workshop.

    I think that you will be most comfortable traveling solo. In the past the group has been made up of both single females and couples. It is too soon to tell the make-up of this group, however I am sure that there will be other singles there, including me. We have a lot of fun painting and going off on excursions together. Please let me know if I can answer any other questions- you can reply to my email that I sent you.


  2. I am interested in your September 2021 workshop in September. I’m currently painting w gouache,love oils And have used acrylic as well. Watercolor scares me :). Although I have someone who might be interested as well I must probably will be traveling alone I’m wondering about the group dynamics Or if this would be an issue. Thank you.

  3. Dear Marina,

    Thank you for your interest in the Italy Painting Retreat. It would be great if you and your mom could join in this year September 23-30, 2022. We are a small intimate group. The villa has great interior and exterior space and the studio is set off from the main area allowing individuals to be as involved with others as they see fit. I have found that artists are usually respectful of each other’s needs for personal space. I’m looking forward to getting to Italy after a long wait.

    Please let me know if you have any other questions for me. I tried emailing you but it came back. If you would like to stay abreast with my activities, news and updates please be sure to register on my contact page:


  4. Hi! I would love to be apart of your program with my mom (most likely for next year or two). Is there any information on that the enrollment size? She’s social when she has to be but the smaller the number the better. Love the full moon pictures and reflection/meditation addition. Excited to experience it one day in the future!

  5. In a designer and your retreat sounds like the best vacation! Do you have a mailing list or schedule of upcoming trips?

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