Alessandro Vezzosi (AV) is a renowned Italian art critic, artist, professor, and Leonardo da Vinci expert. He founded the Museo Leonardo da Vinci in 1993 in the province of Florence, where the great artist was born, and has dedicated his life to researching his work. Vezzosi and his team have collaborated with several major international institutions to study the artist’s shedding light on several aspects of Da Vinci’s life and character by, for example, analysing his fingerprints and even tructing his DNA in a bid to find living relatives.
One of the Leonardo da Vinci museum’s primary objectives is to rid the artist of stereotypes and to portray him in a true light to emporary audience. Fabio Pariante (FP) sat down with Vezzosi to discuss his passion for the multitalented High sance man.
Leonardo Da Vinci is said to have been the first to employ science to elevate art. Can you explain how he did this?
Leonardo said painting “advances all human works.” He believed it was a psychological pursuit which he described as the “daughter of nature.”
He also viewed it as a philosophy and science. For him, art was a synthesis of experimental techniques, physics, and metaphysics. He argued that art was a vital interdisciplinary and universal flow: he conceived his paintings as figurative “machines” of extraordinary complexity and beauty,” and believed that architectural structures were living organisms.
If a building was “sick” it needed the intervention of an “architect doctor” to restore it. Leonardo opened a man’s skull and injected molten wax into the cerebral ventricles to obtain a cast so he could compare the section of a human head with that of a plant bulb. What was he looking for? The form and function of the brain, but not only – he was searching for the senses, soul, and principle of life.
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