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The Leonardo 500

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Leonardo more than a Renaissance man artist? yes but - sculptor? yes but - musician? yes but - anatomist? yes but - cartographer? yes but - scientist? yes but - engineer? yes but - inventor? yes but - no boundaries, no demarcations with holistic views of arts and sciences Leonardo - the ultimate polymath But why and how? illegitimacy prevented shackles of notary apprenticeship promoted practical stance self-learning forged empirical approaches gracious but reserved fastidious in personal care generous to others feverishly creative relentlessly curious never satisfied with norms a blueprint for greatness foundations of genius a fusion of art and science painter, premier guide in observational knowledge through pictorial depiction of form and structure drawing, chief instrument in his didactic method text’s subservient role to explain pictures Questions led to questions led to questions led to questions - leaping from subject to subject notes taken, sketches made backwards, forwards both hands at once pragmatically ambidextrous so ink not smudged myriads of pages each a work of art each a work of science Always scientifically methodical - observation hypothesis experiment cross examination endless search for truth and understanding over and over again often never finished process more important than product journey more important than destination the ultimate empiricist of visual observation And what can be seen? behind each brushstroke of each painting - science optics and geometry in sfumato cadaver dissections in chiarosuro light propagation in perspective and more … Assemblies of components in each engineering design - roller bearings, spiral gears, levers, cogs, tool making, vertical drill, hydraulic saw, helicopters, gliders, parachutes, canal locks, revolving stages, cranes, traffic control, and more … A world of endless exploration - aerodynamics ballistics measurement technology military engineering autopsy embalming geochronology physics of light mechanics and more … all within his remit all within his capability all within his vision Thirst for knowledge - interest in everyday objects fascination with how things worked motivation to go beyond the obvious a man before his time society not ready for his designs no social needs no available resource But what of now? heart of Leonardo caused paradigm shift for cardiac surgeon Wells, pianist Zubrzycki built Leonardo’s viola organista, fusing two musical families, surgeon Coffey confirmed Leonardo’s observation the mesentery is a single organ, for Lentink, Leonard’s questions remain relevant as his research lab studies flight - a quartet from many Leonardo once wrote "There are three classes of people Those who see Those who see when they are shown Those who do not see when they are shown" Leonardo knew how to see eyes, his main avenue to knowledge he made knowledge visible to all but will we see or care to see? We should heed what he said "Wisdom is the daughter of experience." "In rivers the water that you touch is the last of what has passed and the first of that which comes; so with present time." This is the Leonardo 500 - a word, no more, no less, to commemorate each year since the great man's death, may his vision, his example, his journey never be forgotten, simply timeless inspiration for us all! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ A poem to commemorate 500 years since the death of world's greatest polymath Leonardo da Vinci ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Poetry Soup Featured Poem: March 14, 2022

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