Leonardo da Vinci (April 15, 1452 – May 2, 1519) was so much more than painter of the world famous The Last Supper and The Mona Lisa. Da Vinci is considered to be one of the greatest painters of all time and one of the most diversely talented human being to ever have lived.
In addition to being a painter and sculptor, da Vinci was an architect, musician, mathematician, engineer, inventor, anatomist, geologist, cartographer, botanist and writer. Art historian, Helen Gardner is quoted as saying, “The scope and depth of his interests were without precedent…his mind and personality seem to us superhuman, the man himself mysterious and remote”.
Leonardo conceptualized a helicopter, a tank, concentrated solar power, an adding machine, and the double hull, also outlining a rudimentary theory of plate tectonics. Although only a few of his designs were even feasible during his lifetime, da Vinci made important discoveries in anatomy, civil engineering, optics, and hydrodynamics that he did not publish.
To celebrate the 100th anniversary of Wilber and Orville Wright’s historic first flight, Leonardo Da Vinci’s Codex on the Flight of Birds will be on display at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Washington D.C., from September 13th through October 22nd, as part of the Wright Brothers & The Invention of the Aerial Age exhibition.
This is really a great opportunity to view first-hand one of Da Vinci’s most important notebooks in the context of the history of human flight.
Click on An Extraordinary Journey: The History of Leonardo da Vinci’sCodex on the Flight of Birds to learn more about it even if you can’t make the trip.