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 :. | Virgin and Child with St Anne and St John the Baptist | The Virgin of the Rocks | Virgin and Child with St Anne | The Virgin of the Rocks | Lady with Emine |
Related Artists:Samuel Thomas Gill
(Devon, England 1818 - Melbourne 1880 ) Australian/British Artist
Australian/British Artist,also known by his signature S.T.G., was and English-born Australian artist. Gill was born in Perriton, Somerset, England, son of the Reverend Samuel Gill, a Baptist minister, and his first wife, Winifred Oke. Rev. Gill became the headmaster of a school at Plymouth, where the son was first educated, then he continued to Dr Seabrook's Academy, Plymouth. Having moved to London, Gill was employed as a draughtsman and watercolour painter by the Hubard Profile Gallery, before departing for the colony of South Australia in 1839 with his parents, arriving in December. Gill arrived in Adelaide, aged 21 and established a studio in 1840, and called for those 'desirous of obtaining a correct likeness' of themselves and their families, friends, animals and residences to contact him. His activities soon expanded to include street scenes and public events, including the newly discovered copper mines at Burra Burra as well as the departure of Charles Sturt's expedition for the interior on 8 October 1844. Anthonie van Montfoort
(Montfoort, 1533 or 1534 - Utrecht, 1583) was a Dutch painter
His father was a mayor of Montfoort. He went to learn under Hendrick Sweersz. in Delft and Frans Floris in Antwerp. In 1552 he returned to Montfoort, where he married the daughter of the then mayor.
Blocklandt then settled in Delft, where he produced paintings for the Oude Kerk and the Nieuwe Kerk, later lost to the beeldenstorm. Also he painted a work for the Janskerk (Gouda) called De onthoofding van Saint-Jacob, now in the museum there.
In 1572, Blocklandt made a trip to Italy, after which he settled for good in Utrecht, joining a guild there in 1577. In 1579, he painted his best known work, the triptych The Assumption of Mary that is now in the Basilica of St. Martin in Bingen am Rhein.
According to Carel van Mander, Blocklandt painted biblical scenes, mythological subjects and portraits. He is early-Mannerist in style and he and Joos de Beer (another pupil of Floris) were responsible for the Mannerist style begun by Utrecht artists around 1590. Van Mander wrote that De Beer had many paintings by Blocklandt in his workshop that his pupil Abraham Bloemaert later copied. Few works can definitely be attributed to him. One of these is "Joseph interpreting Pharaoh's dream", now in the Centraal Museum in Utrecht.
He was also the teacher of the Delft portrait painter Michiel Jansz van Mierevelt.
David Luders (1710-1759), German painter