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500 Years of Leonardo, 1519-2019 — Living with Leonardo: Fifty Years of Sanity and Insanity in the Art World and Beyond

EVT 584
Feb 19
6:00 pm
Room TBA, Cantor Arts Center
Status: No Registration Required

On May 2, 1519, the Renaissance artist, architect, and engineer Leonardo da Vinci (1452– 1519) died at Clos Lucé in Amboise, France where he lived for the last three years of his life under the patronage of King Francis I. Leonardo could not have anticipated what a global icon of creativity and invention and perpetual museum exhibit he has become five hundred years later.

To commemorate the anniversary of Leonardo’s death, we are sponsoring a year of reflection on Leonardo and his many different legacies. This lecture series, co-sponsored with the Stanford Program in History and Philosophy of Science and the Department of History, will bring distinguished Leonardo scholars to campus to discuss the many dimensions of his work. Stanford Continuing Studies will also offer a Spring course on Leonardo.

Living with Leonardo: Fifty Years of Sanity and Insanity in the Art World and Beyond

Leonardo is a unique figure in the history of world culture, attracting analysis at the highest level and a huge proliferation of crazy ideas. In this lecture, Martin Kemp will look at selected incidents from his engagement with Leonardo over fifty years to show how the “detached and objective” business of historical research becomes immersed in an unmanageable context of myth and wild theories. The moral will be that how information emerges, from whom, when, and where shapes its reception in both the scholarly and public arenas.

Martin Kemp, Professor in the History of Art, Emeritus, Oxford University

Martin Kemp is renowned for his lifelong work on Leonardo da Vinci and more generally on the relations between art and science. He has written a column for many years on science in culture for Nature. He has curated numerous exhibits on Leonardo and allied subjects in different parts of the world. His publications include Leonardo: The Marvellous Works of Nature and Man; Leonardo; La Bella Principessa; and most recently Living with Leonardo: Fifty Years of Sanity and Insanity in the Art World and Beyond.
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