LEONARDO da Vinci
Italian High Renaissance Painter and Inventor, 1452-1519
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 :. | Madonna with a Flower (Madonna Benois) g | The Annunciation | Portrait de femme,dit a tort La belle ferronniere | Lady with Ermine | Funf studies of grotesque faces |
Related Artists:swabian school
the cleveland museum of art, delia and l.e. holden fundsEdward Wadsworth
Edward Wadsworth Gallery
1949). English painter. He was raised in a northern industrial environment that was to appear with great forcefulness in his Vorticist work. He studied engineering in Munich from 1906 to 1907 and, like many other Vorticists (see VORTICISM), Wadsworth interest in the machine showed itself at an early age. He also studied art at the Knirr School in Munich in his spare time, before attending Bradford School of Art; he then studied through a scholarship at the Slade School of Art (1908-12) in London. Early paintings like Harrogate Corporation Brickworks (1908; untraced) show a growing interest in industrial subjects. Under the impact of the Post-Impressionists, he turned for a while to portraiture, beach scenes and still-lifes. His work was included in the final month of the Second Post-Impressionist Exhibition held at the Grafton Galleries in 1912, and in the summer of the same year he joined the Omega Workshops, although his alliance with Roger Fry was short-lived. Wadsworth new friendship with Wyndham Lewis led to an abrupt departure from Omega in October, when several of his works were included in Frank Rutter Post-Impressionist and Futurist exhibitions at the Doro Gallery in London. His painting L Omnibus (c. 1913; untraced; see 1974 exh. cat., no. 12) announced his involvement with motorized themes that clearly derived from Futurism.George Henry Hall
American painter. Brought up in Boston, he began his career as an artist at the age of 16. In 1849 he travelled with his friend Eastman Johnson to D?sseldorf. Hall studied at the K?nigliche Akademie for about a year, and after a further two years of study in Paris and Rome he returned in 1852 to New York where he settled. However, he remained an enthusiastic traveller and spent a total of more than 20 years abroad.