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 :. | Adoration of the Magi | The Baptism of Christ | The Battle of Anghiari | Last Supper | Bacchus (mk05) |
Related Artists:Edward Moran
(August 19, 1829 in Bolton, Lancashire, England -June 8, 1901 in New York City) was an American artist.
He emigrated with his family to America at the age of 15, and subsequently settled in Philadelphia, where after having followed his fathers trade of weaver, he became a pupil of James Hamilton and Paul Weber. In 1862 he became a pupil of the Royal Academy in London; he established a studio in New York in 1872, and for many years after 1877 lived in Paris. He was a painter of marine subjects and examples of his work such as Devile Crag; Island of Grand Manan are in many prominent collections. Among his canvases are 13 historical paintings, intended to illustrate the marine history of America from the time of Leif Ericsson to the return of Admiral Dewey's fleet from the Philippines in 1899.
His sons Edward Percy Moran (born 1862) and Leon Moran (born 1864), and his brothers Peter Moran (born 1842) and Thomas Moran.Paul-Albert Besnard
(2 June 1849 --4 December 1934) was a French painter and printmaker.
He was born in Paris and studied at the École des Beaux-Arts, studied with Jean Bremond and was influenced by Alexandre Cabanel. He won the Prix de Rome in 1874 with the painting Death of Timophanes
Until about 1880 he followed the academic tradition, but then broke away completely, and devoted himself to the study of colour and light as conceived by the Impressionists. The realism of this group never appealed to his bold imagination, but he applied their technical method to ideological and decorative works on a large scale, such as his frescoes at the Sorbonne, the Ecole de Pharmacie, the ceiling of the Comedie-Française (main theatre in Paris), the Salle des Sciences at the Hôtel de Ville, the mairie of the Ier arrondissement, and the chapel of Berck hospital, for which he painted twelve Stations of the Cross in an entirely modern spirit.
A great virtuoso, he achieved brilliant successes alike in watercolour, pastel, oil and etching, both in portraiture, in landscape and in decoration. His close analysis of light can be studied in his picture La femme qui se chauffe at the Luxembourg in Paris, one of a large group of nude studies of which a later example is Une Nymphe au bord de la mer; and in the work produced during and after a visit to India in 1911. A large panel, Peace by Arbitration, was completed seven days before the outbreak of war in 1914.James Archer
James Archer (1823-1904) was a portrait-painter. He was born in Edinburgh, Scotland. His best-known work includes children and people in costume as its subjects becoming the first Victorian painter to do children's portraits in period costume. He studied at the Trustee's Academy in Edinburgh under Sir William Allan. At Archer painted chalk portraits, but in 1849 he exhibited his first historical picture 'The Last Supper' at the Royal Scottish Academy. His work after that mostly consisted of scenes taken from literature or legends that were popular at the time, such as Shakespeare and King Arthur. In about 1859 he began to paint a series of Arthurian subjects, including 'La Morte d'Arthur' and 'Sir Lancelot and Queen Guinevere'. James Archer died in 1904 in Haslemere in Surrey, England, survived by his son and three daughters from his marriage to Jane Clerk.