LEONARDO AND ANATOMYPUBLISHED ON: 2016/11/28
TheMuseo Leonardiano in Vinci – devoted to spread Leonardo’s work asa technologist, engineer and scientist – increases its exhibitionspaces with an area where Leonardo’s studies on anatomy will bedisplayed. This brand-new section, housed in the Palazzina Uzielli,one of the two parts of the museum, documents thestudies on human bodiesdeveloped by the Genius DaVinciboth with direct observation and by carrying on several dissections.The museum exhibition mainly focuses on the corpusof drawings of lower/upper limbs and skulls.
Leonardo’sfamous drawings on human body held in the Windsor Royal Library –that can be consulted on the LeonardianLibrary’seLeo portal (www.leonardodigitale.com)– are the main inspiration for the exhibition, that develops aroundevocativeceroplastics anatomic sculpturesof human body, reproduced right as Leonardo drew it. The waxworks,modelled by artists expert in ceroplastics technique, were bothplanned and created under the scientific cure of Prof. Paola Salvi,teacher at the Academyof Fine Arts of Brera,Milan. They manage to characterize the section with their freshexperimental approach.
Thenew exhibition space also presents theMaster’s studies on the proportions of human bodies,recalled by the VitruvianMan drawing andre-evoked in Vinci by Mario Ceroli’s statue that can be admired inPiazza del Castello, just behind the Museum.
Thethemes presented in this new section make it possible to highlightthe deepconnection between Art and Sciencethat characterizes Leonardo’s work as a whole, with the MuseoLeonardiano and Leonardo’sBirthplace Museumplaying an important role in enhancing it.
Leonardo’sstudies on Anatomy are already partly displayed in the museum, in theOptics section “From Alhazen to Keplero”. They will also be themain topic of newmuseumactivities and educational workshops,available at the Museo Leonardiano startingfrom Autumn 2016.
PUBLISHED ON: 2016/10/25
Leonardo invites you to visit his hometownPUBLISHED ON: 2016/08/30
Sfiorano 150.000 i visitatori al Museo Leonardiano e alla Casa Natale di Leonardo nel 2012PUBLISHED ON: 2013/02/01
The House where Leonardo was born is reopening to the publicPUBLISHED ON: 2012/04/19
Surroundedby the centuries-old olive trees of the Montalbanoslopes, in a landscape almost untouched by time, the house whereLeonardo was born on April 15 1452, the illegitimate son of Ser Pieroda Vinci and one Caterina, is the destination of authentic cultural pilgrimages,undertaken by very large numbers of visitors each year, who are searching for the origins of the Genius.
Asof June 232012, the house of da Vinci’s birth will be opened again, following major restoration works, overseen by Professor Daniela Lamberini of the Department of Architecture of Florence University. The works further enhance the evocative, rustic simplicity of the place, respecting its historical vale and rediscovering some panoramic views hither to hidden to the visitor. But above all, the work on Leonardo’s house has produced a new museum display, curated by the management of the Leonardo Museum, which deploys the latest multimedia technology to offer a very “special”meeting with Leonardo and to present his paintings and drawings.
Where as the Leonardo Museum,in the town of Vinci itself, documents the work of Leonardo the inventor, the technologist and the engineer and the Leonardo Library,also in the town centre, focuses on specialized documentation, the house of his birth is now the place for getting to know Leonardo the painter.
In the small room next to the ticket office, thanks to the cutting-edgetechnology perfected by the company from Milan, Halta definizione, it will be possible to see and interact with The Last Supper; using the same application, a reconstructionof the Battle of Anghiari will shortly be completed. And finally, the visitor will be able to appreciate Leonardo’s famous paintings thanks to the Leonardo Touch application, designed by Centrica in Florence, which holds digital reproductions of Leonardo’s works.
Nowadays,we know almost everything about Leonardo,yet his private life and the relationship he had with his hometown remain less well-known aspects. And so it will be Leonardo himself, here in Anchiano, who welcomes visitors into the most intimate and personal part of his world: a life-size hologram – created by Artmedia of Florence who have woven together film, theatre and documentary work – will lend its voice to an old and tired Leonardo who, from his final home in Amboise,looks back on the past and makes a virtual return to Anchiano to tell us of where he went and whom he met, what he studied and the eventsthat kept this area close to his heart.
The Arno Valley, the Fucecchio Marshes, Vinci and the Montalbano hills are often depicted in Leonardo’s maps and in hisfamous landscape drawings. The house in Anchiano,which is at the centre of a network of paths criss-crossing the Montalbano, is the ideal starting-point for excursions into the surrounding areas,ona quest to find the places and the scenery which inspired the great Genius.
Renovation and restructuring were made possible thanks to co-financingfrom Tuscany regional administration and the contributions of the Ente Cassa di Risparmio di Firenze and Toscana Energia
Friday 22 June 2012, at 5.30 p.m.
Anchiano,House where Leonardo was born
Saturday23 and Sunday 24 June, the House will be open from 10 a.m. until 10 p.m.
Free entry for everyone
Shuttlebus service between Vinci – Anchiano
Buses will leave from Piazza Garibaldi and from the Pinetina di Doccia
The house where Leonardo was born can be reached both by car and by coach, but is also linked to the town of Vinci by the Green Route, a historic path about 3 km long which can be covered on foot.
Openingtimes and admission fees
Open daily 10a.m. – 7 p.m. (10 a.m. – 5 p.m. from November-February)
Admission: 2.00 Euros
Combination ticket: House in Anchiano + Leonardo Museum 8 Euros (full price)
The Leonardo Museum: historic models and digital technologyPUBLISHED ON: 2011/12/20
The collection, to which domestic and international research institutes and university departments have contributed, including the Department of Mechanics and Industrial Technologies of Florence, complements the reconstruction of models with digital animations and interactive applications, with the objective of offering an in-depth view not only of Leonardo’s mechanical technology, but also of his studies in scientific-technical areas, of architecture and of civil engineering. And not only those of Leonardo, but also of artists, architects and engineers who were his contemporaries, so as to afford a more accurate historical presentation of the debts, merits and originality of the ‘Genius’ from Vinci.
The exhibition route starts in Palazzina Uzielli, which overlooks the evocative Piazza dei Guidi designed by Mimmo Paladino, and houses the sections on building site machines, textile manufacturing machinery and mechanical clocks. The models of building site machinery document Leonardo’s interest in the largest building site in fifteenth-Century Florence, the one building the cupola for the Cathedral, which he personally witnessed during his apprenticeship in Verrocchio’s workshop, while the models of the mechanical loom and of the gold-beating hammer reveal a little-known ambition of Leonardo’s: that of automating the process of textile manufacturing.
In the neighbouring location of the Conti Guidi Castle, the original home to the collection, the medieval halls on the ground floor house the section on war machines, together with Leonardo’s studies on techniques for casting cannon. In the letter presenting himself to Ludovico il Moro, which he wrote to gain credence as an engineer at one of the most powerful courts in the Italian peninsula, Leonardo declares that he knows how to make bombards, mortars and light ordnance “of fine and useful forms, out of the common type”. Another part of the room is earmarked for the further expansion of the collection and will soon host a section on architecture and civil engineering.
The model of the large beating wing acts as a frame to the section on flight, housed in the Gallery together with the most famous models from Leonardo’s mechanical studies, such as the flying machine, also shown in the mechanically-propelled version, the study of a wing and the very famous aerial screw which is considered the prototype of the modern helicopter. In the Gallery one can also view tools and kinematic mechanisms: the oil press, the drilling machine, the ventilator, the equalizer and, especially, the mechanisms for moving bells drawn by Leonardo in the Codex Atlanticus and the Madrid I Codex, which bear an extraordinary resemblance to those in the XV Century bell in St. Stephen’s Cathedral in Metz, France.
On the first floor, in the Sala del Podestà, where a splendid polychrome terracotta from 1523, attributed to Giovanni Della Robbia is kept, we find a scale 1:2 reproduction of the large revolving crane on a circular platform designed by Brunelleschi for the construction of the dome of Santa Maria del Fiore, which recalls the history of building site machinery, amply documented in the Palazzina Uzielli rooms. The visitor then comes to the model of Leonardo’s bicycle, and with it, faces a strange question: 1818 or 1503? The singular design of the bicycle, discovered only in 1965, between two sheets of the Codex Atlanticus which were stuck together, has always been the subject of debate. Indeed, some think the model was designed around 1503 by a disciple of Leonardo’s, while some critics affirm that the design is modern, if not actually a recent interpolation effected during the restoration work performed in the 1960s. In this case the invention of the bicycle could only be credited to the first 1818 model made by the German baron Karl von Drais of Sauerbon.
In the same room as the bicycle the model of the self-propelling cart is on show, a self-moving cart powered by a spring mechanism and known as “Leonardo’s cart”.
The optics room documents Leonardo’s interest in physical optics and the studies he undertook to resolve problems relating to pictorial representation of three-dimensional figures. Among the exhibits in this room are Leonardo’s experiments on the phenomena of refraction and reflection, on the use of glass “lentils” to improve sight and also a camera obscura where one can experience the inversion of the projected image.
The visitor route comes to an end in the Water room, in which Leonardo’s studies on the movement of water are documented, with particular reference to navigation of rivers. Indeed, river navigation was one of the major means of transport during the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. The Arno, as the connection between the river port of Pisa and Florence, was widely used in the XV Century for transporting marble from the coastal quarries to the Florentine building sites, and tested technical experts and institutions as far as the possibility of navigating against the current was concerned.
The Leonardo Museum presents itself to the general public as a documentation centre wherein the experience of Leonardo the engineer, the architect and the scientist, and Renaissance technical expertise in general, are amply and scientifically illustrated through a variety of communications media and numerous special focus activities offered by the Educational sector of the Museum.
Vinci, Leonardo's hometownPUBLISHED ON: 2011/12/15
Thanks to the historic and continuous activity of the Leonardo library and the Leonardo Museum, the town of Vinci has become an international cultural centre for research into and popularization of Leonardo’s works. In addition to Leonardo’s legacy, Vinci boasts an unspoilt natural environment of rare beauty, top-quality agricultural produce, which has earned it a well-deserved place in the Città del Vino Movement and ranks it among Italian oil-producing towns. Furthermore it has a tradition of hospitality, recognized by the award of the Italian Touring Club’s Orange Flag. A true and almost timeless borgo (fortified village), which every year attracts thousands of visitors from all over the world.
Founded as a possession of the Guidi Counts in the first half of the XII Century, Vinci Castle passed under Florentine dominion between 1254 and 1273, then became a Comune and from 1372 onwards was administered by a podestà sent from Florence. Just outside Vinci, in a place called Anchiano, Leonardo was born on 15 April 1452 and spent his childhood years there: the most fascinating places in Vinci are closely linked with his universal genius.
The heart of the historic centre is the Conti Guidi Castle, the original nucleus of which is still preserved. In the scenic square behind the entrance to the castle stands Mario Ceroli’s imposing sculpture, which interprets and visualizes Leonardo’s drawing of the Vitruvian Man.
A few metres away, Piazza dei Guidi, reconfigured in 2006 to a project by Mimmo Paladino, introduces one to the museum route devoted to Leonardo. The evocative geometric shapes of the square, with the detail of the star-shaped polyhedron, mark the entrance to the Leonardo Museum in Palazzina Uzielli, housing the ticket office and the building site machinery, textile manufacturing machines and mechanical clocks sections. The exhibition route, devoted to Leonardo’s technical and scientific studies and the history of Renaissance technics, continues from there to the Conti Guidi Castle, where over 60 models of machines are on show, each of which presented with precise references to the artist’s sketches and handwritten notes: from war machines and scientific instruments to machines for moving through air and water and over the ground, to experiments in physical optics.
Still within the walls of the ancient castle, the tour itinerary is completed with the parish church and the Leonardo Library. The Church of the Holy Cross still holds the old baptismal font where it is thought that Leonardo was christened. It is situated in the small baptistery which also hosts the sculptural cycle by Cecco Bonanotte depicting the History of Salvation. A destination for scholars and enthusiastic amateurs, the Leonardo Library is a documentation centre specializing in the works of da Vinci, and holds a complete facsimile reproduction of all Leonardo’s manuscripts and drawings, in addition to all the print editions of his works. The library recently set up the E-Leo digital archive, with over 6 thousand pages of Leonardo’s manuscripts and drawings, which can be consulted online free of charge.
Along the via Montalbano below it, the old cellars of Vinci Castle are today home to the Museo Ideale Leonardo Da Vinci , a private collection recognized as being of public interest and which aims to present the complexity of Leonardo in relation to his life, the land he lived in and his relevance today. The central piazza della Libertà is the site chosen for Leonardo’s Horse by the sculptress Nina Akamu, donated to the town of Vinci by the Leonardo da Vinci’s Horse Foundation and inspired by the unfinished plans of Leonardo’s for an equestrian statue dedicated to Francesco Sforza. On the corner between the roads leading to Empoli and to Cerreto Guidi stands the Sanctuary of the Santissima Annunziata containing a remarkable painting of the Annunciation by Fra’ Paolino from Pistoia, dating from around 1525.
Heading north, taking the old path through the olive groves called “the green route" or the scenic route, one comes to Leonardo’s birthplace in Anchiano, the house in which according to tradition Leonardo was born on 15 April 1452. The house is a typical XV century Tuscan farmhouse and is set on the slopes of Montalbano, all over which Leonardo roamed for his observations of nature and even more so for his studies of geology.
The Montalbano area is one of outstanding environmental importance and beauty and is particularly suitable for rambling and short excursions, thanks to a well-developed network of foot and bicycle paths which link hillside villages surrounded by countryside, archaeological sites and ancient woods.
Recommended places to visit in the surrounding area are the municipalities of Capraia and Limite, Cerreto Guidi, Empoli, Fucecchio and Montelupo Fiorentino, appreciated for their museums, historic villages and high quality local produce; these places make up, together with Vinci, the museum and tourism system named The Lands of the Renaissance.