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 :. | Detail of Madonna of the Rocks | Pod of cherry and forest strawberry | Madonna of the Rocks | The Annunciation | Adoration of the Magi |
Related Artists:Francesco Parmigianino
1503 ~ 1540,Italian painter, draughtsman and printmaker. Beginning a career that was to last only two decades, he moved from precocious success in the shadow of Correggio in Parma to be hailed in the Rome of Clement VII as Raphael reborn. There he executed few large-scale works but was introduced to printmaking. After the Sack of Rome in 1527, he returned to northern Italy, where in his final decade he created some of his most markedly Mannerist works. Equally gifted as a painter of small panels and large-scale frescoes both sacred and profane, he was also one of the most penetrating portrait painters of his age. Throughout his career he was a compulsive draughtsman, not only of preparatory studies for paintings and prints, but also of scenes from everyday life and of erotica. HOLBEIN, Ambrosius
German Northern Renaissance Painter, 1494-ca.1519
Painter, draughtsman and designer of woodcuts, son of Hans Holbein. In the drawing of Ambrosius and Hans Holbein the Younger (1511; Berlin, Kupferstichkab.) by their father, Hans's age is given as 14, and although that of Ambrosius cannot be read clearly, he appears to have been the elder brother. In 1514 he was probably working near the Bodensee, and a Virgin and Child (Basle, Kstmus.), with the coat of arms of Johann von Botzheim, Canon of Konstanz Cathedral (c. 1480-1535), appears to be his work. In 1515 he was working as a journeyman to the painter Thomas Schmid (c. 1480-c. 1550-60) on the decoration of the abbot's Festsaal in the Benedictine St Georgkloster at Stein-am-Rhein, which included allegorical figures of women, one of which, Death with a Female Lute-player (in situ), is signed AH. Also in 1515 he joined his brother Hans in Basle, where together they decorated with marginal drawings (1515-16) the copy of Erasmus's Praise of Folly (Basle, Kstmus.) belonging to the schoolmaster Myconius (Oswald Geissh?sler; d 1552); the distinction between the hands of the two brothers can be made only on stylistic grounds. They also painted a school sign for Myconius, each apparently working on a different side. On 25 July 1516 Ambrosius was recorded staying in the house of the painter Hans Herbst, in whose workshop he may have been employed. On 14 February 1517 he was enrolled in the Basle painters' guild, and on 5 June 1518 he became a citizen of the city. Numerous woodcut designs executed for Basle printers from 1517 onwards and signed with Ambrosius Holbein's initials survive, most of which are set in architectural frameworks inspired by the Italian Renaissance,Edward Armitage
(May 20, 1817 - May 24, 1896) was an English Victorian era painter whose work focussed on historical, classical and biblical subjects.
Armitage was born in London to a family of wealthy Yorkshire industrialists, the eldest of seven sons of James Armitage (1793 - 1872) and Anne Elizabeth Armitage nee Rhodes (1788 - 1833), of Farnley Hall, just south of Leeds, Yorkshire. His great-grandfather James (1730 - 1803) bought Farnley Hall from Sir Thomas Danby in 1799 and in 1844 four Armitage brothers, including his father James, founded the Farnley Ironworks, utilising the coal, iron and fireclay on their estate. His brother Thomas Rhodes Armitage (1824 - 1890) founded the Royal National Institute of the Blind.
Armitage was the uncle of Robert Armitage (MP), the great-uncle of Robert Selby Armitage, and first cousin twice removed of Edward Leathley Armitage.