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 :. | Study of a child | Flower Studies | Madonna of the Rocks | Cartoon | Leda |
Related Artists:WEYDEN, Rogier van der
Netherlandish Northern Renaissance Painter, ca.1400-1464
major early Flemish master, known also as Roger de la Pasture. He is believed to have studied with Robert Campin. His early works also show the influence of Jan van Eyck. Van Eyck, however, had been a master at objective rendering of detail, whereas Roger in his work portrayed emotions with an assurance that has not been surpassed. His ability to depict piety is reflected in the early masterpiece Descent from the Cross (c.1435; Prado); he depicted with significant restraint the profound grief of the mourners grouped around the tragic figure of Jesus. His composition strongly affected later representations of the theme. Roger became City Painter in Brussels in 1436. He then produced a series of undated altarpieces including the Last Judgment (hospital, Beaune), the Braque Triptych (Louvre), Crucifixion with Donors (Vienna), and Adoration of the Magi (Berlin), which vary in execution from a stress on sumptuous details to a more sculptural rendering of the figures. Roger is believed to have made a pilgrimage to Italy in the holy year 1450. Whether this supposed excursion had any effect on his style is much debated. It has been shown that his Entombment (Uffizi) bears an affinity to the Tuscan treatment of the subject, particularly by Fra Angelico, and that Roger's Virgin and Child with Saints (Frankfurt) has a strong resemblance to the Italian religious art of the day. His style is, however, highly individual. His religious paintings and his portraits are characterized by a straightforward monumentality. The portraits, such as that of a young lady (National Gall. of Art, Washington, D.C.) and of Francesco d'Este (Metropolitan Mus.) exhibit a simple clarity of contour and psychological penetration. Other notable works are his St. Luke Painting the Virgin, of which a version or replica is in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Crucifixion Peter Franchoys
Peter, Peeter or Pieter Franchoys or Francois (1606-1654) was a Flemish Baroque painter from Mechelen, who painted an altarpiece of Calvary influenced by Anthony van Dyck for the St. Gummarus church in Lier, Belgium.
He first learned to paint from his father, Lucas Franchoys the Elder, and later from Gerard Seghers in Antwerp . In 1631 he traveled in France and is recorded being in Fontainebleau. In 1646 he became a member of the Mechelen schutterij and in 1649 he became a master in the Guild of St. Luke there.
According to Houbraken he was known for his landscapes with small figures, that attracted the admiration of Archduke Leopold Wilhelm of Austria, for whom he painted many years.
His work is memorialized in the Gulden Cabinet of the poet from Lier, Cornelis de Bie.
Danish Realist Painter, 1851-1935
Danish painter. He trained at the Kongelige Akademi for de Skenne Kunster from 1868 to 1875 under Jergen Roed. In 1871 he began to visit the fishing hamlet of Hornbek on the north coast of Zealand, not far from Copenhagen, often with painters such as Peter Severin Kreyer and Kristian Zahrtmann. Here Johansen painted pure landscapes, or alternatively figures from the village traditional population, seen in their homes. A Meal (1877; Copenhagen, Hirschsprungske Saml.) shows an elderly fisherman seated at table eating potatoes, attended by his wife; dull daylight from a window in which a net is drying illumines the frugal interior and worn figures.