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 :. | Buste one frontal to seeing man and head of a Lowen | Madonna with the carnation | Annunciation (detail) st | Madonna in the rock grotto | Studies fur the adoration of the Konige |
Related Artists:BELLINI, Jacopo
Italian Gothic Era Painter, ca.1400-1470
Born in Venice, Jacopo had been a pupil of Gentile da Fabriano. In 1411-1412 he was in Foligno, where with Gentile he worked at the Palazzo Trinci frescoes. In 1423 Bellini was in Florence, where he knew the new works by Brunelleschi, Donatello and Masaccio.
In 1424 he opened a workshop in Venice, which he ran right up until his death.
Many of his greatest works, including the enormous Crucifixion in the cathedral of Verona (1436), have disappeared. From c. 1430 is the panel with Madonna and Child, in the Accademia Carrara, once attributed to Gentile da Fabriano. In 1441, at Ferrara, where he was at the service of Leonello d'Este together with Leon Battista Alberti, he executed a portrait of that Marquess, now lost. Of this period the Madonna dell'Umilt??, probably commissioned by one of the brothers of Leonello.
The influence from Masolino da Panicale towards more modern, early Renaissance themes is visible in the Madonna with Child (dated 1448) in the Pinacoteca di Brera: for the first time, perspective is present and the figure are more monumental. Later he contributed with works now lost to the Venetian churches of San Giovanni Evangelista (1452) and St. Mark (1466). From 1459 is a Madonna with Blessing Child in the Gallerie dell'Accademia.
Later he sojourned in Padua, where he trained a young Andrea Mantegna in perspective and classicist themes and where, in 1460, he finished a portrait of Erasmo Gattamelata, now lost. Of his late phase, a ruined Crucifix in the Museum of Verona and an Annunciation in Sant'Alessandro of Brescia remain.LORME, Anthonie de
Dutch painter (b. ca. 1610, Tournai, d. 1673, Rotterdam)Malczewski, Jacek
Polish Painter, 1858-1929