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 :. | Study fur a women head | Madonna with the Yarnwinder tw | Kvinnoportratt | Head of a girl | The Verkundigung |
Related Artists:Blanchet, Louis-Gabriel
French Painter, 1705-1772
French painter, active in Rome. He won second place in the Prix de Rome competition in 1727 and thereafter settled in Rome, where he enjoyed the patronage of Nicolas Vleughels, Director of the Acad?mie de France, and the Duc de Saint-Aignan (1684-1776), who at that time was French Ambassador to the Holy See. In 1752 Blanchet painted the Vision of Constantine (Paris, Louvre), a copy of Giulio Romano's fresco in the Sala di Costantino in the Vatican. He was, however, principally a portrait painter. His portrait of Tolozan de Montfort (1756; Lyon, Mus. B.-A.) is a fine example of his elegant, rather nervous style and his distinctive use of colour. In the same year Blanchet executed a portrait of the contemporary painter Johann Mandelberg (1730-86; Copenhagen, Kon. Dan. Kstakad.). Other surviving works of his include St Paul (signed and dated 1757; Avignon, Mus. Calvet) and his full-length portrait of P. P. Lesueur and E. Jacquier (1772; Nantes, Mus. B.-A.). Elizabeth Jane Gardner
(October 4, 1837-January 28, 1922) was an American academic and salon painter, who was born in Exeter, New Hampshire. She was an American expatriate who died in Paris where she had lived most of her life. She studied in Paris under the figurative painter Hugues Merle (1823-1881), the well-known salon painter Jules Joseph Lefebvre (1836-1911), and finally under William-Adolphe Bouguereau (1825-1905). After Bouguereau's wife died, Gardner became his paramour and after the death of his mother, who bitterly opposed the union, she married him in 1896. She adopted his subjects, compositions and even his smooth facture, adopted them so successfully that some of her work might be mistaken for his. Gardner's best known work may be The Shepherd David Triumphant (1895), which shows the young shepherd with the lamb he has rescued. Among her other works were "Cinderella," "Cornelia and Her Jewels," "Corinne," "Fortune Teller," "Maud Muller," "Daphne and Chloe," "Ruth and Naomi," "The Farmer's Daughter," "The Breton Wedding," and some portraits.
Gillis van Coninxloo
(1544 ?C 1607) was a Dutch painter of forest landscapes, the most famous member of a large family of artists. He travelled through France, and lived in Germany for several years to avoid religious persecution.
He was born at Antwerp and studied under Pieter Coecke van Aelst, Lenaert Kroes and Gillis Mostaert. He practiced his art in France, but in 1587, on account of religious persecution, emigrated to Frankenthal and passed his later life in Amsterdam, where he died in 1607.
Coninxloo ranks as one of the most important Dutch landscape painters of the transition from the sixteenth to the seventeenth century. He exercised a strong influence on Jan Brueghel the Elder, Schoubroeck, Savery, and other Flemish and Dutch landscape painters of the transition period. Coninxloo is considered the founder of a new approach to the painting of forests; while earlier forest landscapes had used woods as backdrops for human activity, van Coninxloo made them a subject, submerging tiny human figures in elaborate compositions of trees in hugely exaggerated scale.
During his stay at Frankenthal from 1588 to 1595, he influenced several better known Dutch landscape-painters collectively referred to as the Frankenthal School. Karel van Mander wrote about him and his father Jan den Hollander in his Schilder-boeck. He wrote that his teacher Pieter Coeke van Aelst was his cousin, and that his landscapes were among the best of all Dutch landscape artists.