La signorina Nera Simi (1890 – 1987) was the daughter of Filadelfo Simi, one of the great 19th-century Italian Realist painters. La signorina took over her father’s studio in 1923 and developed it into the only school in the western world that taught and specialised in representational painting.
The Simi family originated in Stazzema, a mountainous area near the marble quarries of Cararra, and, this year, the town of Stazzema commemorated her achievement by naming a town square after her and creating a show of her alumni’s work. The show ran from July 12th to August 20th, 2014, and was a great success, with over 300 people at the opening and an average daily count of 20 visitors.
Past students range from the classes of the 1950s to the classes of the 1980s: Antonio Ciccone, Nelson White, Fernando Bernardini, M. John Angel, Lance Bressow, Daniel Graves, Ben Long, Joke Frima and Simona Dolci, to name only a few.
An outline biography of Nerina Simi can be seen here: http://www.filadelfosimi.it/biografia/nera_simi.htm