Leonardo da Vinci: Self Art and Nature
Published to coincide with the 500th anniversary of Leonardo da Vinci's death, this incisive and illuminating biography follows the three themes that shaped the life of Leonardo and forever changed Western art and imagination: nature, art and self-fashioning.
Leonardo spent his childhood in the Tuscan countryside among farm workers before entering the most reputed artistic workshop of Florence. There he bloomed as one of the leading painters of his time, and began applying his skills to explore and question the world. By the 1480s he had transformed himself into an ideal court artist and was a familiar of kings; by the 1510s he left behind him the solemn image of a magus philosopher.
Following the chronology of his life, Leonardo da Vinci: Self, Art and Nature examines Leonardo as artist, courtier and thinker, and explores how these aspects found expression in his paintings, as well as his work in sculpture, architecture, theatre design, urban planning, engineering, anatomy, geology and cartography. It concludes with observations on Leonardo's relevance today as a multidisciplinary artist, one who combined imagination and science to shape his own self and the world.
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