Art Safari’s creative adventures out of Africa to Italy





Painting in Piazzas –

Matera and Puglia 


15 to 24 October 2019



With James Willis

A relaxing and fulfilling 10 days of painting in the South of Italy with artist tutor James Willis.  We begin with 4 nights in Basilicata, staying in Sasso Barisano in the heart of the ancient city of Matera. 

Perched on a rocky outcrop, Matera is famous for its complex of ancient cave dwellings and rock churches, carved into the calcarenite rock of the Gravina Gorge.  Our sketchbooks will fill with images of elegant architecture – churches, caves, archways, piazzas, terraces and bell towers, and long sweeping views of the city from viewpoints across the ravine. 

In Puglia we spend 5 nights at a charming Masseria (fortified farmhouse), halfway between La Città dei Trulli and Valle d’Itria. 

The countryside is beautiful with vast plains and rolling hills, we paint whitewashed hilltop towns surrounded by olive groves, drystone walls, vineyards and orchards.  This is the land of Trulli, traditional drystone huts with conical ‘beehive’ roofs.  Constructed as field shelters, stores and dwellings, the Trulli lend a fairy-tale quality to our surroundings.

Life slows down a pace in this agricultural region.  The locals rise early, disappear for long siestas and dine late in the evening.  Vespas rattle and cough through narrow streets, women congregate to chat and groups of men with weather-beaten faces gather in piazzas to play cards in the late afternoon sun.

We will also spend a day in the historic Adriatic seaport of Monopoli, painting ultramarine ‘Gozzi’ (traditional rowing boats used to fish shallow waters), at the ‘Il Porto Vecchio’ – the architecture is charming. 

Tour cost per person sharing from £2507 (double bed only)

Single Room Supplement from £300

Our prices include: All accommodation, all meals, art tuition & hosting, excursions & internal transport as stated on the itinerary, group airport transfers

Our prices exclude: Flights, alcoholic drinks & gratuities, optional activities, art materials, personal expenses, visa (if required)

Matera & Puglia FAQs

Artistic Aims:  Landscapes and architectural studies from life.

Mediums:  Watercolour, fast drying oils, acrylics, pencil

AccommodationLe Origini ( in Matera & Masseria Rosa Trulli ( in Puglia

Suitable for photographers: Yes, the tour format is ideal for photographers 

What will my non-painting partner do? We can organize optional activities for non-painters, self-guided or guided walks, wine tasting, fishing, horse-riding.

Joining Airport for group transfers:  Bari Karol Wojtyła Airport – ask us for transfer timings before booking flights.  EasyJet fly from London Gatwick to Bari.

Walking:  A reasonable level of fitness is required for this tour as we will be walking to painting locations – there are many steps in Matera!

Optional activities:   To be discussed with you and arranged

Suggested tour extensions:  Visit Naples for a few days – please ask us for suggestions.

Average temperatures in Matera:  October high 19° / low 10°

Group Size:  Between 6 and 12 guests

Enquire now on 01394 382235 or