Leonardo da Vinci: Drawings from the Biblioteca Reale in Turin
SAN FRANCISCO • Legion of Honor • Ongoing
|Previously exhibited at the Birmingham Museum of Art, Leonardo da Vinci: Drawings from the Biblioteca Reale in Turin, marks the first time that this remarkable group of drawings has been loaned to a U.S. exhibition by the Biblioteca Reale (Royal Library) in Turin, Italy. This small-scale traveling exhibition presents the first opportunity to view these drawings together, outside of Italy.|
Recognized as one of the greatest draftsmen of all time, Leonardo da Vinci (1452–1519) explored his extensive range of interests through his drawings. Drawings from the Biblioteca Reale in Turin features eleven drawings, including three that are double-sided, and one bound notebook. Dating from about 1480 to 1510, the works represent the most prolific period of Leonardo’s career. The subjects of the drawings range from fantastical explorations to acute observations, anatomical studies, and utilitarian working drawings. Additionally, one of the Turin sheets includes a fragment of a poem.
One of the most well known drawings in the exhibition is Leonardo’s preparatory sketch of the angel for the first version of his painting Madonna of the Rocks (ca. 1483).
Leonardo’s Codice sul volo degli uccelli (Codex on the Flight of Birds) of 1505/6 is also on view. Contained in a bound notebook of eighteen recto and verso sheets, the Codex on the Flight of Birds is filled with Leonardo’s observations on the movement of birds and his ideas for reproducing these natural movements with a machine.
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