The empty streets of Florence under quarantine

Yari Sacco is a photographer based in Florence, Italy. Peruse his website, and you’ll see stunning shots of lush vineyards, upscale restaurants, high fashion and interior design.

But in recent weeks, as Italy has stumbled under the weight of crushing pandemic, he has seen a different side of his hometown. 

Lungarno degli Archibusieri
Lungarno degli Archibusieri. Photo by Yari Sacco

Photos of Florence, Italy under Quarantine

Beloved sights like the Uffizi, the Cathedral of Santa Maria, Ponte Vecchio and Palazzo Vecchio – usually filled with throngs of visitors from around the globe – have fallen silent and empty.  

Knowing that this was a historic time in the city’s history, Sacco set out to photograph the empty squares and silent streets of Florence. Commissioned by Malandrino Film, his photographs provide a startling look at the icons of Florence that many travelers know well. 

“We want to remember this time in our city,” Sacco says. “Florence is a town based on tourism, but tourism has used her and changed her face. These images are an invitation to reflect on the behaviors that we call normal, and to reflect on the way we want to live.”

Here’s a look at some of Sacco’s photos of Florence, Italy during the pandemic. 

Empty streets near Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore
Empty streets near the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore. Photo by Yari Sacco

Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore

The Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, commonly known as the Cathedral of Florence, is the main Florentine church. It’s a symbol of Florence, and one of the most famous icons in Italy. It is located in an area of the city that has hosted religious buildings since Roman times.

Via Della Vigna Nuova
Via Della Vigna Nuova is usually filled with shoppers who seek the shops and boutiques of famous stylists and designers. Today, the street is empty. Photo by Yari Sacco

Via Della Vigna Nuova

Home to some of the city’s top stylists and famous designers, the Via Della Vigna Nuova region is usually bustling with shoppers. The area was once dominated by noble families. 

Florence Central Market
The Central Market of Florence sits quietly, closed for business. Photo by Yari Sacco

Central Market of Florence (Mercato Centrale)

Located between via dell’Ariento, via Sant’Antonino, via Panicale and Piazza del Mercato Centrale, the Central Market. It dates back to the late 19th century when Florence was the capital of Italy.

The Ponte Vecchio is the most beloved bridge in Florence. Photo by Yari Succo
The Ponte Vecchio is the most beloved bridge in Florence. Photo by Yari Sacco

Ponte Vecchio

The Ponte Vecchio is one of the most beloved bridges in the world. It dates back to 1177 and is a symbol of Florence. Travelers flocked to the picturesque bridge, which is normally filled with vendors and artists. Ask any traveler to Florence, and they will likely have a photo of themselves on the Ponte Vecchio. 

Lungarno Corsini in Florence, Italy
A lone walker on Lungarno Corsini, an elegant promenade in Florence, Italy. Photo by Yari Sacco

Lungarno Corsini

Lungarno Corsini has always been one of the most elegant promenades in the city. It is lined with stately buildings, from Piazza Goldoni to Palazzo Ricasoli, which was home to the New York Grand Hotel in the 19th century, a favorite with Americans.  

Piazza della Signoria in Florence, Italy
Piazza della Signoria is the most famous square in Florence, Italy. Today, it stands empty. Photo by Yari Sacco

Piazza della Signoria

Piazza della Signoria is the most famous square in Florence, Italy. Located in the center of medieval Florence, it was once the heart of Florence’s political life. The square is usually filled with thousands of tourists who come to visit the Uffizi Gallery, the Fountain of Neptune, the Loggia della Signoria and the stunning fourteenth-century Palazzo Vecchio, which was built between 1299 and 1314 to give a seat to the representatives of the government of the city.

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