LA CIVETTA April 2019 - Page 21


Master of sfumato – a softening and shading technique responsible for Mona Lisa’s smile – and sensational polymath of the renaissance, the allegedly vegetarian Leonardo was ahead of the times in more than just his artistic and scientific endeavours. He wrote little in his notebooks on his private life, perhaps too consumed by his feverish curiosities to spend time documenting himself.

It is rumoured – as is the case with many of the prominent Florentine artists of the time – that he was gay. That said, he does not seem to have agonised over his sexuality in the same way that his long-term rival Michelangelo did, in fact it might have inspired him, as in his detailed and intricate sketches of the human body, where he shows far more interest in the male than female form.

As much an enigma as he was a genius it’s no wonder that 500 years on Leonardo remains a towering figure in the art world.

For an opportunity to marvel at his works, catch any of the Leonardo da Vinci: A Life in Drawing exhibitions from 1 February – 6 May 2019 at the following locations:

Leonardo da Vinci: A Life in Drawing (24 May – 13 October 2019), and exhibition of over 200 drawings, will take place at The Queen's Gallery, Buckingham Palace, London.

See page 26 for our interview with the exhibition officer at the Bristol Museum and Art Gallery.

Ulster Museum, Belfast

Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery

Bristol Museum and Art Gallery

Derby Museum and Art Gallery

National Museum Cardiff

Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, Glasgow

Leeds Art Gallery

Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool

Manchester Art Gallery

Millennium Gallery, Sheffield

Southampton City Art Gallery

Sunderland Museums and Winter Gardens