The LdM Architecture Department’s mission focuses on training future architects to improve human lives while respecting environmental and economic sustainability. Through the framework developed between the five departments of the LdM School of Design, students examine the theory and practice of aesthetics in design, form, and space and their relation to political, social and cultural constructs.

The curriculum gives special attention to the Renaissance architecture in Florence, taking a unique look at its influence on the arts, fashion, and Italian design. Students discover how to respond to geographic contexts and programmatic activities through critical analysis, as they develop projects that benefit the local community and analyze issues raised by the academic coursework. LdM faculty organize seminars, teach in field settings and workshops for students to gain a deeper understanding of the history of architecture, landscape, and urban design from antiquity to the modern era through the lens of Florence and Tuscany.

Approaching architecture through design is crucial to comprehend its influence and relation to contemporary social, political, and cultural events. The interdisciplinary approach of the LdM Architecture Department provides a strong foundation for those students who elect to continue to graduate studies, and allows others to pursue degrees in related fields such as art history, design, fine arts, and museum studies.

Sculpture and Ceramics

The Sculpture and Ceramics Department at LdM aims to engage students through critical analysis of the creative process while they build an artistic personality. We want students to have a solid technical and academic foundation as they embark on an experimental path of personal discovery, establishing their voices as artists to create a meaningful body of work.

The Department consists of dedicated faculty who are respected artists in their field, who encourage students to develop ideas through conceptual reasoning and problem solving within an interdisciplinary and collaborative environment. The varied curriculum offers students the opportunity to discover the potential of different mediums such as ceramics, marble, and terracotta, while gradually learning higher-level techniques which they apply to sculpture, design and artistic craft.

From the first phases of learning the foundations, students begin to model earthenware and apply finishing techniques, and then move on to more complex projects applying glazing techniques. As they delve further into the artistic practice of sculpture, they start on more ambitious constructions such as abstract forms, and human clay figures using live models and works of art in the museums of Florence as a point of study. In advanced sculpture, students learn the basics of marble and alabaster sculpture. First, students develop skills using chisels, hammers, and finishing tools. After gaining some basic understanding of working the material by hand, students use air tools to create their works. 

At the LdM Sculpture and Ceramics Department, the techniques for shaping and modeling stone and marble have a key role in the academic program. Tuscany has always been an important reference point for marble processing with its famous quarries, where world-renowned masterpieces had their beginnings. LdM is in the unique position to offer the study of traditional techniques in marble and stone working as an integral part of the Department. An important element in the study of alabaster and stone processing are the curricular field trips to the town of Pietrasanta, an internationally renowned center in the field of stone sculpture known for its marble and bronze workshops. The Tuscan town is the chosen home by various contemporary artists. Students can draw inspiration from the exhibited works while establishing a connection with artists who work with various mediums, blending artistic heritage perfectly with contemporary creativity and tradition. 

All Sculpture and Ceramics students at LdM have the opportunity to work in a fully equipped studio with state-of-the-art machinery such as kilns, potter’s wheels, sculpture tools, and a pug mill.

Those who study ceramics and sculpture go on to exhibit professionally, pursue a career in the arts with their own studio or work in larger studios on collaborative projects.

Certificates available at LdM:


The LdM Restoration Department’s mission is to train future conservators in the highest standard of practice, preparing them to work professionally in the preservation of artistic and cultural treasures. Guided by faculty, who are dedicated mentors, students explore the academic, practical, technical, and decision-making processes of the study of conservation and its applications.

The curriculum of the Department follows a theoretical and hands-on approach. Students can deepen their knowledge of mural restoration (frescos) or painting conservation alongside the methodological approaches and practical skills that range from introductory to advanced levels, learning a wide array of supporting scientific and analytical techniques. The coursework provides fundamental knowledge in the structure, properties and conservation of materials, as well as documentation methods and ethics.

With practical training, students apply methods and skills learned in LdM’s professionally equipped laboratory or on-site in and around Florence, while building their professional portfolio. LdM’s faculty are among the experts who have restored the Magi Chapel in Florence’s Palazzo Medici-Riccardi and paintings in the Uffizi Gallery, and who collaborate with the world’s top restoration institutions like Florence’s Opificio delle Pietre Dure.

Through well-designed collaborations, students study in-depth the chemical principles and methods in conservation work. At the LdM Restoration Department headquarters, students have the chance to be involved in the restoration of ancient Etruscan artifacts, thanks to the CAMNES-LdM Archaeology Lab. The Department also offers specialized seminars and lectures to raise awareness of other areas of restoration.

LdM students who explore the field of restoration and conservation have great opportunities to travel in Italy and all over the world, working directly on originals from the 14th to 19th centuries. Students at the Restoration Department have worked on artifacts in the Medici Chapel Museum among other historical sites in Florence. They have traveled to Nepal in collaboration with the University of Kathmandu to work in both Hindu and Buddhist temples; to India to work on frescos and paintings from the 17th and 18th centuries; to Chile to work at the Pablo Neruda Museum; to Argentina to work on the sculptures of Piazza Italia; and recently to the Easter Island to restore the famous Moai statues.


Keeping in line with the interdisciplinary approach and philosophy of the school, the Department aims to give students the foundations in the art form of printmaking while they learn the skills that push their boundaries as artists.

The courses cover beginner and intermediate levels and are designed for LdM students who want to expand the study of the various engraving techniques and learn the process of artistic printing. They will delve into the fascinating printmaking processes practiced through the centuries while learning the unique importance of form, line and composition, as well as the historical, modern and contemporary approaches to printmaking and etching.

From the initial course, students are introduced to the various techniques of engraving on metal and wood, up to the most modern materials. Through practice, students at LdM improve their techniques creating more complex compositions; two-dimensional pictorial constructions, creative interpretation of the figure, still-life compositions, natural landscapes, and geometric structures. They examine the contemporary art theory creating a personal dialogue with the artistic process, and gain the freedom to research and give voice to their personal expression.

The study of printmaking at LdM offers students the opportunity for creative futures in related fields such as craft artists, fine artists, educators and media arts.


The Photography Department at LdM aims to enhance students’ ability to conceptualize ideas, and articulate concepts visually while engaging in critical conversations on how images shape contemporary culture. We recognize the increasingly interdisciplinary nature of photography and encourage students to explore related media including installation and film. This helps them harness the power of self-expression to create thoughtful work that deals with meaningful issues in today’s global environment. 

Through close interaction with the faculty, who are highly regarded professionals, LdM provides students with all the necessary tools to analyze in-depth, critically evaluate and structure professional-level projects. The Department’s curriculum covers a full spectrum of conceptual and theoretical issues that combines technique with creativity in specially structured courses offered at all levels. Students begin with the basic techniques of studio lighting, panning, zooming in and black and white portraiture. The acquired methods are then put into practice while they learn more advanced procedures honing their skills, so they can progress to professional post-production. During the course of study, LdM students develop their own photographic and artistic language building on the technical and theoretical aspects of the discipline.  

Our facilities offer spacious photo labs with a dark room, advanced computer facilities with Adobe Suite programs, and a collection of professional equipment for students to immediately put into practice what they learned: they thus gain a deeper understanding of how to communicate concepts in a clear way and present them in a professional form that reflects contemporary themes. Through this process, they can use their photographic projects to build their professional portfolios, which may propel them to start a career in a chosen field such as photography, fashion photography, advertisement and commercial photography, and food design. 

Performing Arts

The LdM Performing Arts Department’s mission is to cultivate creative artists, performers and storytellers, whose diverse, innovative voices inspire change for a better world. LdM offers a comparative approach that breaks down boundaries and removes barriers by giving students a strong foundation in theory and performance skills. Students receive training from dedicated faculty that prepares them for a career in the performing arts, while developing the critical thinking and communication skills that are the cornerstone to a liberal arts education.

Along with the theoretical courses, the Performing Arts department curriculum offers a variety of classes providing students with a comprehensive view of the world of performing arts. The professional faculty, through academic discourse and performance art, teach students the critical skills necessary to reflect on the personal creative process while defining their own style. Students examine the intersection and influence of performance art today, from dance genres such as flamenco and ballet to the theatrical culture in Italy, which looks at the birth of this genre as well as the history of opera from its inception at the Court of the Medici in Florence to the present. 

Subjects such as European theatrical and choreographic traditions, and set design are studied from a cultural, artistic and social context, in order to give students an inclusive educational experience.

LdM has formed a special partnership with Fondazione Franco Zeffirelli Center for the Arts and Entertainment, located in the heart of the historical city center of Florence. The Fondazione’s archives include Zeffirelli’s works of drama, opera, ballet and film productions. This collaboration adds new courses in the Department giving students the chance to delve into the magic of the visual and performing arts, and the diverse professional paths that are available for creative minds.

From stage direction, to bodywork to group dynamics, Performing Arts allows students from all fields to acquire the organizational, non-verbal and leadership skills necessary for their future endeavors.

Painting, Drawing and Mixed Media

The aim of the Painting, Drawing and Mixed Media Department at LdM is to train students with the specific technical and creative skills to find their own artistic voice within the constructs of a higher-education institution. The faculty is made up of artists and educators recognized in their fields who provide a strong foundation in art traditions and believe in the strength of visual language in studio practice. The Department uses its unparalleled access to museums, festivals, and contemporary artists’ studios to provide students with a broad exposure to the arts. 

The Department’s goal is to give each student a solid theoretical foundation while encouraging individual creativity through the investigation and expression of multiple mediums. The curriculum maps out three levels of skill acquisition from beginning to advanced levels. Through this process, students begin to make their own personal journey of reflection, discovery and experimentation. The first level starts with learning the fundamental principles and rules of drawing and painting through the study of objects. Students then study the human form with live models and move on to analyze the great themes that make up a composition: light, perspective and proportion. In the intermediate phase, students learn to perfect their techniques through skills such as the mixing of colors, brush strokes, and the preparation of the canvas using traditional techniques.

Gradually, during the most advanced courses, students discover the tone of their own stylistic code. In the advanced level of drawing and painting students move from the universal figurative language to the discovery of personal expressive techniques. Supported by the guidance of the instructors, students are then ready to explore non-traditional modes using mixed media and alternative materials to build their body of work. This exchange allows for a dynamic dialogue between the faculty and students, putting at their disposal the invaluable resource of their experience.

The painting and drawing lessons take place in classrooms and art studios. The workstations are always illuminated by the same light source to allow the student to work on the same composition over several days, both during lessons with the instructor and independently during open studio hours. In all the locations where the Department has classes, a plaster cast gallery (gipsoteca) is available for students with copies of works of art (from classical antiquity to the modern age) of various shapes and sizes. These models are indispensable for the practice of freehand copy. The Institute also makes use of the collaboration of professional models for the study of the human form.

LdM believes that professionalism in the art world is based on the growth and development of personal awareness. Students gain the ability to innovate which is only possible with a strong foundation of knowledge and communication as well as through the practice of creating, moving and exhibiting works of art. Professional creative fields that appeal to many who follow this study are gallery managers, multimedia artists, art directors, and fine artists.

Italian Gastronomy and Culture

Every region of Italy — from Piedmont to Apulia — has its own cultural identity, each one featuring its own gastronomic delicacies. Although characterized by unique and distinctive traits, Italian cuisine is the expression of valued and diversified cultural traditions.

The variety of courses offered span from local lifestyle and history, to regional economy and local resources, climate and environmental conditions. Food is studied with an interdisciplinary approach, which allows students to analyze its socio-anthropological aspects, such as the role of food associated with ethnic identity and religious beliefs. Food is also explored as a narrative tool in the visual arts, to portray Italian customs and rituals.

The Italian Gastronomy and Culture department provides an in-depth insight into the connection of food with culturehistory, traditions and environment. The main focus is on Italian and Mediterranean finest products, classic recipes, and eating habits, from a cultural-historical point of view. Also, attention is given to the question of sustainability and the related sustainable economic growth. In addition, students are encouraged to develop their own culinary skills, by acquiring traditional and innovative cooking techniques, as well as to explore their creativity through food design and styling classes.

Students learn how to make a traditional meal, using the tools of the trade such as meat and vegetable cutting, baking and pastry-making, soups and creams, fresh pasta and sauces, and applying correct cooking methods. Also, the practical didactic approach allows students to experience food and wine tastings, on-site visits to local food and wine producers in order to have a better understanding of the close relationship between gastronomic culture, territory and food industry.

Special features are the educational-practical cooking classrooms, wine tasting room and fully-equipped modern kitchens, located both on LdM premises and in the historic Central Market of Florence. While courses in Florence focus more on practical-technical applications, the offerings in Tuscania highlight the importance of environmental preservation, agricultural best practices, and the conservation of biological and culinary diversity.


Mathematics is a rigorous and demanding subject that both excites and stimulates the intellect. The LdM Mathematics Department aims to teach and understand this universal language within disciplines such as medicine, science and technology, and liberal arts. 

The Department takes a three-pronged approach to math education: in the first, mathematics is presented as core knowledge that provides additional instruments to understand and master other subject areas; in the second, emphasis is placed on the application of math in everyday life; ultimately, the final approach is the examination of mathematics in a historical context with emphasis on the outstanding Italian mathematicians, such as Fibonacci, Cavalieri, Tartaglia, and Peano.

We have divided the mathematics curriculum between two areas of focus at two of our sites. The Florence campus courses service general education in the field of liberal arts. The Rome campus mathematics courses focus on the needs of the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) students, offering courses in calculus and statistics. A core requirement of the STEM study is a course examining important scientists in a historical framework, giving LdM mathematics students a complete perspective on the sciences in Italy.

Environmental Sciences

The LdM Environmental Sciences Department is a part of the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) program allowing students to better comprehend Italian influence in science and research. The Department aims for students to develop critical thinking and scientific literacy, while exploring the interactions of the human effect on the natural environment.

The Department’s curriculum offers courses that investigate the principles of environmental science and ecology while addressing issues such as water resources and sustainable energy. Students examine pollution, ecology, and biodiversity as they apply practical solutions learned in field laboratory sessions that take place in unique natural habitats in and around Rome. 

The Environmental Science Department at LdM is open to both science and non-science majors. For STEM students, a core requirement of the study is a course examining important scientists in a historical framework, giving them an extensive perspective on the scientific background of Italy.