It seems quite a time since we have had a chance to get into Manchester but thought of visiting the drawings of Leonardo da Vinci exhibition was the inspiration we needed.
After an enjoyable meal at the quirky Richmond Tea rooms, we set off to visit Manchester Art Gallery. Having been warned about possible queues to get into the Leonardo exhibition, we were pleased to find we had timed it perfectly and walked straight in. The room was dark to protect the drawings but we had the opportunity to view a range of his work. These included his anatomical work, where he was exploring the human body, as well as some portraits.
Apparently, he was studying human proportion; attempting to find the mathematical formula for ideal beauty. In the last sketch below, he distorted the features of a couple to see if he could create ideal ugliness. An interesting concept that shows how he was developing his thought process.
It was interesting that these were never really meant to be shown and many were just Leonardo trying out ideas.
Another sketch showed him drawing a series of small thumbnail sketches to cover all the knowledge he believed a painter should possess to represent the world accurately. Here he attempts to capture every action of the human body. The very small sketches are fascinating in the amount of detail and movement he achieves; something all artists could learn from.
A fascinating and thought provoking exhibition and it was interesting to see that there are other exhibitions of his work around the country, giving a chance for many people to appreciate a selection of his work. We hope to visit one or two ourselves.