Our goal is to discover the genius of Leonardo in a sort of “literary journey”, through the words of the many scholars who have studied the Tuscan artist over the centuries.
“And the fame of his name was so great that he was not only held in esteem in his own time, but has been esteemed even more highly by posterity since his death” (Vasari).
Reading passages and quotations makes the guided tour extremely fascinating. It will be devoted specifically to the Codex Atlanticus, the portrait of a Musician and the works of the painters who were Leonardo’s followers.
Then, through passages quoted mainly from the Codex Atlanticus, it will often be Leonardo himself who will explain his ideas to visitors as well as his theories about painting, war machines and flight.
In this way it will be possible not only to illustrate the extraordinary insights in the Codex and learn at first hand about the modernity of Leonardo as a painter, but also to recount the history of the Biblioteca Ambrosiana. The journey will start in the Sala Federiciana, and with passages from the texts accompany the participants on a journey made up of words and images.
At left, St. John the Baptist, Gian Giacomo Caprotti, called Salai (1480-1524), 1510-1520, tempera and oil on panel, 73 × 51 cm; at right, Portrait of a Musician, Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519), 1485-1490, tempera and oil on panel, 40 × 30 cm
For Spring 2020 the Class of Latin and Greek studies organizes a cycle of three conferences entitled Intorno a un Codice. In each lecture, a scholar will present a particularly valuable Ambrosian codex, illustrating its features.