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 :. | Gekrose of the intestine and its Gefabsystems | Raffaello Sanzio named Raffael Portrat of Lorenzo de Medici | Last Supper | The Anunciacion | anna sjalv tredje |
Related Artists:Friedrich Johann Overbeck
German religious painter. Expelled from the Vienna Academy because of his opposition to its classicism, he went to Rome and with Peter von Cornelius, Veit, Schadow-Godenhaus, and others, formed the group known as the Nazarenes. His first real successes were his frescoes for the Casa Bartholdy (now in Berlin) and for the Villa Massimo. Among his notable paintings are Christ Entry into Jerusalem and Christ Agony in the Garden. Overbeck sought to make his art serve religion. His influence was due more to the purity of his doctrine than to the power of his work, which is often lacking in pictorial appeal and in color. Luke Clennell
Born, 1781, Back. Died, 1840, Country, England
was an English engraver and painter. Born in Morpeth, Northumberland, the son of a farmer, he was apprenticed to the engraver Thomas Bewick in 1797. Between 1799 and 1803 he acted as Bewick's principal assistant on the second volume of the History of British Birds. After completing his seven-year apprenticeship with Bewick he moved to London, where he married a daughter of the copper-engraver Charles Turner Warren (1762-1823). Through his marriage he became acquainted with such book illustrators as William Finden and Abraham Raimbach. He gained a reputation as an engraver and in May 1806 he was awarded the gold palette of the Society of Arts for a wood-engraving of a battle scene. He subsequently gave up engraving for painting. In 1814 he received from the Earl of Bridgewater a commission for a large picture to commemorate the banquet given to the Allied Sovereigns at the Guildhall, London. He experienced great difficulty in getting the distinguished guests to sit for their portraits, and suffered a mental breakdown. After a spell in an asylum, he recovered and returned home. Nicholas Chevalier
Russia landscape artists and cartoonist .
was an Australian artist. Chevalier was born in St Petersburg, Russia, the son of Louis Chevalier, who came from Vaud, Switzerland, and was overseer to the estates of the Prince de Wittgenstein in Russia. Nicholas' mother was Russian. Nicholas left Russia with his father in 1845, and studied painting and architecture in Lausanne, Switzerland and at Munich. In 1851 Chevalier moved to London and worked as an illustrator in lithography and water-colour. He also designed a fountain which was erected in the royal grounds at Osborne, and two of his paintings were hung at the Academy in 1852. Further study in painting followed at Rome. About the end of 1854 Chevalier sailed from London to Australia to join his father and brother, and in August 1855 obtained work as a cartoonist on the newly established Melbourne Punch. Later he did illustrative work for the Illustrated Australian News and also worked in chromo-lithography. In 1864, when the National Gallery of Victoria was founded, an exhibition of pictures by Victorian artists was held, the government underook to buy the best picture exhibited for £200. Chevalier's oil painting "The Buffalo Ranges" was selected, and was the first picture painted in Australia to be included in the Melbourne collection. In 1867 Chevalier visited New Zealand, travelling widely and doing much work there which was exhibited at Melbourne on his return. In 1869 he joined the H.M.S. Galatea as an artist with the Duke of Edinburgh, on the voyage to the East and back to London with stops in Tahiti, Hawaii, Japan, China, Ceylon (Sri Lanka) and India. The pictures painted during the voyage were exhibited at South Kensington. In January 1874 Chevalier was commissioned by Queen Victoria to travel to St Petersburg and paint a picture of the marriage of the Duke of Edinburgh. Chevalier made London his headquarters and was a constant exhibitor at the Academy from 1871 to 1887.