Leonardo Da Vinci
Italian High Renaissance Painter and Inventor, 1452-1519
Florentine Renaissance man, genius, artist in all media, architect, military engineer. Possibly the most brilliantly creative man in European history, he advertised himself, first of all, as a military engineer. In a famous letter dated about 1481 to Ludovico Sforza, of which a copy survives in the Codice Atlantico in Milan, Leonardo asks for employment in that capacity. He had plans for bridges, very light and strong, and plans for destroying those of the enemy. He knew how to cut off water to besieged fortifications, and how to construct bridges, mantlets, scaling ladders, and other instruments. He designed cannon, very convenient and easy of transport, designed to fire small stones, almost in the manner of hail??grape- or case-shot (see ammunition, artillery). He offered cannon of very beautiful and useful shapes, quite different from those in common use and, where it is not possible to employ cannon ?? catapults, mangonels and trabocchi and other engines of wonderful efficacy not in general use. And he said he made armoured cars, safe and unassailable, which will enter the serried ranks of the enemy with their artillery ?? and behind them the infantry will be able to follow quite unharmed, and without any opposition. He also offered to design ships which can resist the fire of all the heaviest cannon, and powder and smoke.
The large number of surviving drawings and notes on military art show that Leonardo claims were not without foundation, although most date from after the Sforza letter. Most of the drawings, including giant crossbows (see bows), appear to be improvements on existing machines rather than new inventions. One exception is the drawing of a tank dating from 1485-8 now in the British Museum??a flattened cone, propelled from inside by crankshafts, firing guns. Another design in the British Museum, for a machine with scythes revolving in the horizontal plane, dismembering bodies as it goes, is gruesomely fanciful.
Most of the other drawings are in the Codice Atlantico in Milan but some are in the Royal Libraries at Windsor and Turin, in Venice, or the Louvre and the École des Beaux Arts in Paris. Two ingenious machines for continuously firing arrows, machine-gun style, powered by a treadmill are shown in the Codice Atlantico. A number of other sketches of bridges, water pumps, and canals could be for military or civil purposes: dual use technology.
Leonardo lived at a time when the first artillery fortifications were appearing and the Codice Atlantico contains sketches of ingenious fortifications combining bastions, round towers, and truncated cones. Models constructed from the drawings and photographed in Calvi works reveal forts which would have looked strikingly modern in the 19th century, and might even feature in science fiction films today. On 18 August 1502 Cesare Borgia appointed Leonardo as his Military Engineer General, although no known building by Leonardo exists.
Leonardo was also fascinated by flight. Thirteen pages with drawings for man-powered aeroplanes survive and there is one design for a helicoidal helicopter. Leonardo later realized the inadequacy of the power a man could generate and turned his attention to aerofoils. Had his enormous abilities been concentrated on one thing, he might have invented the modern glider. Related Paintings of Leonardo Da Vinci :. | The Virgin of the Rocks | Virgin of the Rocks (mk10) | Saint John the Baptist | La Gioconda (The Mona Lisa) | Bacchus (mk05) |
Related Artists:Village procession
painted Village procession in 1640Pieter Brueghel the Younger
(1564 or 1565 - 10 October 1636) was a Flemish painter, known for numerous copies after his father Pieter Brueghel the Elder's paintings and nicknamed "Hell Brueghel" for his fantastic treatments of fire and grotesque imagery.
Pieter Brueghel the Younger was the oldest son of the famous sixteenth-century Netherlandish painter Pieter Brueghel the Elder (known as "Peasant Brueghel") and Mayken Coecke van Aelst. His father died in 1569, when Pieter the younger was only five years old. Then, following the death of his mother in 1578, Pieter, along with his brother Jan Brueghel the Elder ("Velvet Brueghel") and sister Marie, went to live with their grandmother Mayken Verhulst (widow of Pieter Coecke van Aelst). She was an artist in her own right, and according to Carel van Mander, possibly the first teacher of the two sons. The family moved to Antwerp sometime after 1578 and Pieter possibly entered the studio of the landscape painter Gillis van Coninxloo (1544 - 1607). In the 1584/1585 registers of Guild of Saint Luke, "Peeter Brugel" is listed as an independent master. On 5 November 1588 he married Elisabeth Goddelet, and the couple had seven children.
He painted landscapes, religious subjects and fantasy paintings. For this last category he often made use of fire and grotesque figures, leading to his nickname "Hell Brueghel".
Apart from these paintings of his own invention, Pieter Brueghel the Younger also copied the works his father had created by using a technique called pouncing. His genre paintings of peasants lack Pieter the Elder's subtlety and humanism, and emphasize the picturesque
Joos van Winghe
(1544, Brussels - 1603, Frankfurt), was a Flemish Renaissance painter.
According to Karel van Mander he was born in Brussels in 1544 and travelled to Rome where he lived with a Cardinal for four years. When he returned to Brussels he became court painter to the Prince of Parma until he left the country in 1584 as a consequence of the Fall of Antwerp. He settled in Frankfurt and his place at Parma's court was taken by Otto van Veen. He died in 1603, aged 61. Van Mander mentions several pieces by his hand in Brussels, Frankfurt, and Amsterdam.
According to the RKD who spent four years travelling in Rome, Parma, and Paris before returning to Brussels in 1568. In 1585 he moved to Frankfurt, where he became a citizen (burgher) in 1588 and stayed. He was the father of the painter Jeremias van Winghe, and is known for portraits and genre works, as well as book title pages.