A. Leonardo Da Vinci was born on April 15th, 1452 in Vinci, Italy. He died May 2nd, 1519 in Amboise, France (Abbagnano)
B. “I can carry out a sculpture in marble, bronze, or clay; and in painting I can do everything it is possible to do.” –Leonardo Da Vinci (Lester, 63)
C. It is believed by many that since his time, Leonardo Da Vinci has influenced all painting (“Leonardo Da Vinci”)
D. Thesis: Although he was often unreliable when it came to his work, Leonardo Da Vinci was the greatest artist in European history because of his intense focus on nature and perspective, his studies on human anatomy and mathematics, and because of his influence on many other artists.
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C. According to Leonardo Da Vinci, understanding nature means understanding proportions (Abbagnano)
1. Proportions found in numbers, sounds, weights, time spaces, and natural power
D. Da Vinci believed that math is the “basis of all certitude” (Abbagnano)
1. Because of this theory, Da Vinci was able to formulate theorems and principles of statics and dynamics.
E. Leonardo Da Vinci focused greatly on the proportions of the human body.
1. For example: The human and its joints (Richter, 183)
F. He made many observations about the human figure
1. Every man is half the full height he will grow (Richter, 169-193)
2. The space between the parting of the lips and the base of the nose is a seventh of the human face (Richter, 169-193)
IV. Leonardo Da Vinci was the greatest artist because he influenced a number of artists
A. Young artists were just effected by Leonardo Da Vinci’s style, but his messages as well
B. Leonardo Da Vinci influenced many other artists
1. In 1500s, Fra Bartolommeo and Andres del Sarto began applying Leonardo’s ideas to their work (“Leonardo Da Vinci”)
2. Raphael: Raphael went to Florence in hopes of increasing his knowledge about perspective and anatomy and began using what he learned from Leonardo’s works into his own portraits (“Leonardo Da Vinci”)
3. Michalangelo: It was clear that Machalangelo’s sculptures began to change as well because of Da Vinci’s influence (“Leonardo Da Vinci”)
4. Leonardo da Vinci taught younger generations of artists who also began painting in his influence and he advised them to focus on perspective, then proportions. (Richter, 243)
V. Some may argue that Da Vinci was not the greatest artist because he was unreliable
A. Throughout his entire career, Leonardo Da Vinci had a problem with deadlines
1. In 1478 he had the job of painting the altarpiece in the chapel of the palazzo Vecchio but he never finished it (Lester, 92)
2. In 1481 he had the task of painting an...