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 :. | Madchenkopf with confused hair | Madonna with the Yarnwinder | Six studies fur naked or clothed men | The Annunciation | Study fur the head of a Madchens |
Related Artists:Jean Cotelle
Jean Cotelle, 'the younger', was a painter and engraver, born in Paris in 1645. He received his early instruction from his father, Jean Cotelle, and eventually visited Italy. On his return he devoted himself to his profession, producing historical paintings, miniatures, and occasionally etchings. His chef-d'oeuvre was the 'Marriage at Cana,' painted in 1681 for the cathedral of Notre-Dame. There are by him at Versailles several views in the gardens of that palace. He etched a plate representing 'Our Lord on the Mount of Olives,' and a series of seven scenes from the history of Venus. He was admitted into the Academy in 1672, and died at Villers-sur-Marne in 1708.Thomas Alder
Hans Jorgen Hammer
(29 December 1815, Copenhagen - 28 Januar 1882, Rome) was a Danish artist who specialized in genre painting.
Following an apprenticeship with J.G. Berg in Copenhagen, Hammer was admitted to the Danish Academy in 1828. In 1841, he became a student of Christoffer Wilhelm Eckersberg who remained a close friend. He was awarded the Academy's little silver medal in 1842 and the large silver medal the following year. Det sidste Læs, his entry for the Neuhausen Prize in 1845, was bought by Statens Museum for Kunst but it was not until 1837 that he was awarded the prize with Bønder forsamlede til Lystighed en Søndag Eftermiddag under aaben Himmel.
Hammer was an industrious but rather serious and thoughtful artist. His avid approach to detail slowed down his work considerably. After the outbreak of war in 1848, he became a naval officer. With a stipendium from the Academy, he travelled to Italy in 1857 where he painted Torvet i Ariccia efter Solnedgang, considerably enhancing his reputation in Denmark. The painting was acquired by Statens Museum for Kunst in 1863. Other notable works are Axsamlersken (1866) and Postbudet med det længe ventede Brev (1877). After recovering from a serious illness, he travelled to Rome in 1881 but died there the following year