Francesca trained in Fine Art in Milan and in Beijing, and studied at Venice and Bologna Universities. She was an apprentice under the painter and etcher Arrigo Ghisellini for fifteen years and worked with the restorer Paola Centurini on 17th and 18th century oil paintings.
After moving to England in 1990, she worked as a scenic artist and assistant designer at the National Theatre, the Royal Shakespeare Company, the Bristol Old Vic and many other theatres throughout the UK.
Francesca moved to Bristol where she founded and taught the Post Graduate Course in Scenic Art at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School. Today at the Old Vic she teaches Old Masters techniques and Animation Projects.
She has also worked in stop-motion animation for more than fifteen years. She was a painter and model maker on Aardman Animation’s Chicken Run, as Head Painter on Tim Burton’s The Corpse Bride and as Art Director on Wes Anderson’s Fantastic Mr Fox and on Laika’s ParaNorman.
She is a visiting tutor in Animation Design at the National Film and Television School in Beaconsfield, and has recently run a Stop-Motion animation workshop at the Academy of Performing Arts in Hong Kong.
Her work explores the effects of transparency and layering in a variety of media; particularly with ink and watercolour but also with oil, pastels, fused glass and digital painting.
Francesca's art primarily explores dynamics and movement in landscapes and light reflections, both in a figurative and sometimes completely abstract world.