What do you think about when you think of Leonardo da Vinci? Most people remember him as an elderly bearded professor slash painter and the Mona Lisa. On his true list of endeavors painting isnt very high. We have less than 20 paintings that haveMoreWhat do you think about when you think of Leonardo da Vinci? Most people remember him as an elderly bearded professor slash painter and the Mona Lisa.
On his true list of endeavors painting isnt very high. We have less than 20 paintings that have survived. It seems that Leonardo spent most of his time writing and sketching in his notebooks. There are about 5000 pages that have survived and its thought that this is only a small fraction of what has been lost to time. While there is some time spent exploring art and painting the rest of his notebooks are spent delving into subjects that did not even exist during his lifetime. From explaining exactly how a bird is able to fly to implementing that knowledge into designs for man-made wings – Leonardo was ahead of his time and in some ways even our own.He may remind you of the renaissance and art history.
Perhaps the most shocking thing about Leonardo was that he was against those types of stereo-types. He was rebellious, funny, and in a lot of ways completely insane. He imagined rail machine guns, submarines, weapons of mass destruction, air planes, and what it would be like to look at earth from the moon - all before the light bulb was invented.There are two problems that are presented when trying to learn more about Leonardo da Vinci.
One is that his biographies are mostly boring and become filled with too much inconsequential information. The other is that taking on his un- filtered notebooks becomes over whelming. In his thousands of pages of information he reveals almost nothing about his personal life. To read almost everything known about him could be contained within a few pages. To make up for this his biographers tend to delve into supplementary historical information.
While that may be interesting to some and context always helps form a clearer perspective – da Vinci was not a man to be restrained by his time. As Freud says:“Leonardo da Vinci was like a man who awoke too early in the darkness, while the others were still asleep.”To learn about him by going through all his notebooks is as daunting as it is a head scratcher.
This book attempts to keep up and reign in the man who is considered to be the greatest genius of all time. To bring all of his paintings together, to present not just his most popular works and quotes but his lesser known and more obscure verses. This arrangement of his whole life is meant to give and over view or as you will soon see- an ariel view of the ever elusive Leonardo. From this perspective we can better apprehend the depth and scope of what gives him his genius status. Perhaps by doing so we can absorb some of his wisdom and as Leonardo says:It’s a poor pupil who does not surpass his master.