Edouard Vuillard
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Edouard Vuillard Museum
November 11, 1868-June 21, 1940. French painter.

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Leonardo Da Vinci
Reverse side of the portrait of Ginevra de' Benci

ID: 52323

Leonardo  Da Vinci Reverse side of the portrait of Ginevra de' Benci
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Leonardo  Da Vinci Reverse side of the portrait of Ginevra de' Benci


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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 | Portrait of Ginerva de'Benci | Virgin and Child with St Anne | Study for a kneeling Leda | Madonna Benois Madonna with a Flower |
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Sir Frank Dicksee
1853-1928 English Sir Frank Dicksee Location English painter and illustrator. He studied in the studio of his father, Thomas Francis Dicksee (1819-95), who painted portraits and historical genre scenes; he then entered the Royal Academy Schools, London, where he was granted a studentship in 1871. He won a silver medal for drawing from the Antique in 1872 and a gold medal in 1875 for his painting Elijah confronting Ahab and Jezebel in Naboth Vineyard (untraced), with which he made his debut at the Royal Academy in 1876. He also began to work as an illustrator during the 1870s, contributing to Cassell Magazine, Cornhill Magazine, The Graphic and other periodicals. During the 1880s he was commissioned by Cassell & Co. to illustrate their editions of Longfellow Evangeline (1882), Shakespeare Othello (1890) and Romeo and Juliet (1884).
Piero di Cosimo
1462-1521 Italian Piero di Cosimo Galleries Italian painter and draughtsman. Tax declarations made by Piero di Cosimo's father suggest that the artist was born in either 1461 or 1462. According to the first, he was eight years old in 1469, while a catasto (land registry declaration) of 1480 gives his age as 18. A document of 1457 establishes that his father, Lorenzo di Piero d'Antonio, was a maker of small tools (succhiellinaio) rather than a goldsmith, as Vasari claimed. By 1480 Piero appears no longer to have been living at the family house in the Via della Scala, Florence, but was an unsalaried apprentice or workshop assistant to Cosimo Rosselli, from whom he received room and board and eventually took the name of Piero di Cosimo.
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