Inventions and achievements by Leonardo Da Vinci
Leonardo da Vinci’s achievements include paintings which are fundamental to the history of European art, with Da Vinci and fellow artist Michelangelo being fundamental to the rise of the Renaissance period which began in Italy before spreading across the rest of Europe. As well as skills in art mediums of painting and drawing, Leonardo also went onto achieve success in a whole other set of disciplines in which he would also add his customary innovation.
Although his art is the main focus of this article, much of it fits closely with other fields in which he was involved. For example, his sketches in some cases depicted some ingenious inventions, though only at a very low level that at the time seemed impossible dreams. The genius of Leonardo da Vinci is underlined by how many of these inventions later became full products centuries later.
Leonardo’s best paintings include titles such as The Mona Lisa (La Gioconda), The Last Supper, St John the Baptist, Baptism of Christ, Adoration of the Magi, Leda, Portrait of Ginevra Benci and Virgin of the Rocks. Most artists of this era would concentrate on religious depictions as they would be placed directly into rich institutions such as churches and cathedrals which could afford to pay large commissions. With few others able to pay the same salaries, artists were always likely to be covering famous religious scenes with their skills in order to pay the bills. Leonardo da Vinci was respected enough to be able to find time to address his own artistic curiosities and so would only choose projects that specifically appealed to him. It was rare for an artist at this time to have such power within his career and unfortunately most would lead relatively frustrated lives, and this continues today with most creative people, not just painters.
Reproductions of Leonardo da Vinci’s paintings are best served as framed art prints which finish the original brilliance of the artist with a professional touch that looks great in most homes. Younger fans may instead go for posters or stretched canvases instead. The art market is now flooded with Da Vinci reproductions, with many offering alternative versions of the original paintings, such as cropped elements in greater detail or slightly different tonal and colour balances.
Leonardo da Vinci was certainly the most influential of artists, with a great breadth of talent that is unsurpassed by any human, and only matched by Michelangelo. The Renaissance was led by these two figureheads, with others adding their own more narrow specialties on top to drive European art development onwards. Italian art peaked during this period and has never risen to the same levels since, in terms of influence on other countries and as such Leonardo da Vinci will always be amongst the most respected painters and sketchers with in the country.
Leonardo da Vinci, the genius of the Italian Renaissance was born in the town of Vinci; his birth is not known with accuracy but it is assumed he was born in 1452.
Leonardo’s achievements in so many different areas made him an outstanding human being: scientist, painter, philosopher, draughtsman, writer, botanist, inventor; there is hardly a branch of human learning to which he did not at one time or another give his eager attention. He was also interested in architecture, art-sculpture, mathematics, engineering and music; he was in fact a many-sided genius.
Considered one of the greatest painters of all time and definitely the most talented person ever to have lived; in this article we will be mainly focus on two of his greatest masterpieces: “The Last Supper” and the “Mona Lisa”.
The Last Supper: Between 1496 and 1498 Leonardo painted this masterpiece, however it was originally executed in tempera on a badly prepared stucco ground and began to deteriorate a few years after its completion; it was restored on several occasions but it was not until 1908 that Professor Cavenaghi has, in opinion of experts, preserved it from further injury.
The Painting represents the last meal that Jesus had with the Apostles before he was betrayed, captured and killed. Leonardo successfully captured the betray effect in the painting and the gestures of the disciples reveal their temperaments, passions and shock by the realisation that there is a traitor in the group.
The Mona Lisa: Once back in Florence, Leonardo started working on the Portrait of Mona Lisa or La Joconde by which the portrait is officially known in the Louvre Museum. It is assumed that he started working on the portrait in 1501 and it was finally completed in 1504; even when the completion of the most famous painting in the world took around four years, Leonardo did not paint it for Francesco and Lisa del Giocondo (They commissioned the painting); he painted it for the posterity; the enigmatic Mona Lisa looks like if she is alive and observing us from any angle you look at the painting.
An extract of Vasari’s eulogy of this portrait clearly reflects the admiration of this work: “…The nose, with its beautiful and delicately roseate nostrils, might be easily believed to be alive; the mouth, admirable in its outline, the rose-tints of their colour with those of the face, in the utmost perfection, and the carnation of the cheek does not appear to be painted, but truly flesh and blood…”
A peck of pigment near the left elbow was damaged in 1956 when a young Bolivian named Ugo Unganza Villegas threw a rock at it.
On the 22 May 1519, Leonardo da Vinci died, leaving us with an astonishing legacy of art and invention; he will leave forever as the Universal genius of all time.