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 :. | Mona Lisa | Detail of Madonna of the Rocks | The Baptism of Christ | The Annunciation | The Battle of Anghiari |
Related Artists:Christian Friedrich Tieck
1776-1851 Berlin,was a German sculptor and a brother of Ludwig Tieck. Tieck was born in Berlin, where he also died. He was taught by Johann Gottfried Schadow. Based on a concept by Karl Friedrich Schinkel, Tieck created the tomb of General Gerhard von Scharnhorst at Berlin's Invalidenfriedhof in 1822. He also created a bust of Wilhelm Heinrich Wackenroder and a lion made of bronze after a model by Christian Daniel Rauch. Ludovic Piette
French Painter, 1826-1878.French painter. He studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris during the 1850s under Isidore Pils and Thomas Couture. He attended classes at the Acad?mie Suisse and made his Salon d?but in 1857 with The Scorpion Broom (ex-Mus. B.-A., Rouen). His early works were often based on literary sources and include The Phantoms (exh. Salon 1859) and The Witches Appearing to Macbeth (exh. Salon 1861). Piette only exhibited at the Salon on two further occasions (1872 and 1876), preferring instead to sell his work at auction in the H?tel Drouot. In the early 1860s he abandoned literary subjects in favour of working directly from nature, a shift that probably relates to his developing friendship with Camille Pissarro. This association is first documented by Pissarros portrait of Piette in his Studio (1861; Dr and Mrs Jordan H. Trafimow priv. col.) and an important correspondence between the two artists from 1863 to 1877 survives. Piette portrayed Pissarro painting out of doors (c. 1870; priv. col., see Pissarro, exh. cat., ACGB, 1980, no. 322). SACCHI, Andrea
Italian painter, Roman school (b. 1599, Nettuno, d. 1661, Roma).Italian painter and designer. He occupied an important position, midway between Annibale Carracci and Carlo Maratti, in the development of a more restrained, less decorative painting in 17th-century Rome, a trend that culminated in the 18th century with Pompeo Batoni. Sacchi trained with Francesco Albani, Carracci's student, and taught Maratti. His often expressed devotion to the art of Raphael and Carracci and his criticism of the views of Pietro da Cortona and Gianlorenzo Bernini made him, with Nicolas Poussin and Alessandro Algardi, one of the most significant representatives of a stylistic and aesthetic opposition to the more flamboyant, extrovert aspects of the High Baroque. Sacchi did not, however, share Poussin's passionate interest in Classical antiquity, nor was his mature work as cerebral. Yet his mature style, less richly coloured than his early manner and more restrained emotionally,