Leonardo di ser Piero da Vinci He was born in ( April 15th , 1452 ) in Anchiano, near Vinci, Republic of Florence. died in ( May 2nd 1519 ) in Cloux [now Clos-Lucé], France.
He was a Genius, perhaps more than that of any other figure, epitomized the Renaissance Humanist Ideal.
He was an Italian Renaissance Polymath : Painter Sculptor Architect Musician Scientist Mathematician Engineer Inventor Anatomist Geologist Cartographer Botanist Writer
Leonardo’s parents were unmarried at the time of his birth, His father, ser piero, was a landlord, and his mother, Caterina, was a young peasant woman. Leonardo grew up on his father’s family’s estate, where he was treated as a “ legitimate “ son and received the usual education of that day. He didn’t apply himself to higher mathematics-advanced geometry and arithmetic- until he was 30 years old, when he began to study it with diligent tenacity.
Leonardo has often been described as the archetype of the “ renaissance man “, A man of “ unquenchable curiosity “ and “ feverishly inventive imagination “. “ The man himself was both Mysterious and Remote”, According to Art Historian Helen Gardner
Marco Risci points out, “ his vision of the world is was essentially logical rather than mysterious, and that the Empirical methods he employed were unusual for his time “
Leonardoâ€™s Last Supper ( 1495- 1498 ) and Mona Lisa ( 1503-1506 ) are among the most widely popular and influential paintings of the Renaissance.
His notebooks reveal a spirit of scientific inquiry and a mechanical inventiveness that were centuries ahead of their time.
He spent 17 years in Milan, until ludovicoâ€™s fall from power in 1499
He was listed in the register of the Royal household â€œ painter and engineer of the duke â€œ
He was frequently consulted as a technical advisor in the fields of architecture, fortifications and military matters and he served as a hydraulicmechanical engineer
As a painter, Leonardo completed six works in the 17 years in Milan. Decorative Ceiling painting in Sala Delle Asse ( Milan Castello Sforzesco )
The virgin of the rocks
During this period, he worked on a grandiose sculptural project : ď‚§ Monumental equestrian statue in bronze.
ď‚§ Clay model of the horse ( 5 meters height )
Leonardo left Milan to Florentine shortly after the victorious entry of the French into Milan.
He was appointed an architectural expert on a committee investigating damages of the church of San Francesco al Monte.
Leonardo left Florence in 1502 to enter the service of César Borgia as “ senior military architect and general engineer “
He sketched some of the city plans and topographical maps, creating early examples of aspects of modern cartography.
In Spring of 1503 returned to Florence to make an expert survey of a project that attempted to divert the Arno River behind Pisca. He build a large canal that would bypass the unavoidable stretch of the Arno and connect to Florence by water to the sea.
He designed his own panoramic views of the river bank which can be seen as landscape sketches of great artistic charm.
Centuries later, the express highway from Florence to the sea was built over the exact route Leonardo chose for his canal.
For three years he worked on painting the Battle of Anghiari The same period was also a time of intensive scientific study. He broadened his anatomical work into a comprehensive study of the structure and function of the human organism. He made systematic observations of the flight of birds
These were also set down in his own collection of data, contained in the socalled Codex Hammer ( formerly known as the Leicester Codex.
Leonardo helped the sculptor Giovanni Francesco Rustici execute his bronze statues for the Florence Baptistery, after which time he settled in Milan
Leonardo spent this period as an advisor to King Louis XI in Architectural matters. He worked on Palace-villa for Charles, some sketches for an aratory for the church of Santa Maria alla Fontana
He also looked into an old project revived by the French governor : the Adda canal that would link Milan with Lake Como by water.
In 1513 political events caused Leonardo to move again. He went to Rome, Accompanied by some of his pupils and his assistants. For three years he remained in Rome at a time of great artistic activity : Donato Bramante was building st. Peterâ€™s Raphael was painting the last rooms of the new popeâ€™s new apartment.
He his time working in his studio on mathematical studies and technical experiments or surveyed ancient monuments as he strolled through the city.
He also made sketches for a spacious residence to be built in Florence for the Medici, who had returned to power there in 1512.