It is hard to covey in pictures the vast size of any of the churches we’ve been in or the acoustics, which are sublime. As a music recording engineer it was a treat to arrive at Santa Maria Novella and find the organ being played.
I took a moment to video a 360 degree view of the church while the organ was playing.
Hopefully that will covey some of the feeling of what it is like to be in one of these churches.
This church has works by many artists dating from as early as 1360. The scale of the paintings is vast – the painting at the start of the video above is about 15 feet tall. To take it all in you have to stand 30 feet away.
As with everything we’ve seen the detail in the paintings is phenomenal, but the biggest treat for me was the stained glass windows, all dating from the 1400s. Here is a gallery of some complete windows, and detail from the large window behind the main altar.
Of course that is not everything we saw at the church, just a few of the highlights. There were also restored frescoes in the surrounding chapels, and a small attached museum with artefacts from the church’s history.