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Piazza Guido Masi and the Vitruvian Man
Photo © Comune di Vinci
Photo © Comune di Vinci

Contemporary Vinci: sculptures in the land of Leonardo

Discovering sculptural works dedicated to the Italian Renaissance artist

The village of Vinci, on the slopes of Montalbano, is inextricably linked to the figure of Leonardo. Walking through the medieval center, one comes across numerous contemporary works dedicated to him, works by Italian and international artists who wanted to pay tribute to the great Renaissance genius. Here is where to find them.

Contents
  • 1.
    Leonardo's Horse
  • 2.
    The Vitruvian Man
  • 3.
    Leonardo's baptism
  • 4.
    Dialogue beyond time and space
1.

Leonardo's Horse

Leonardo's Horse, Nina Akamu
Leonardo's Horse, Nina Akamu

This equestrian monument is inspired by the unfinished project of a colossal statue for Francesco Sforza, to whose creation Leonardo devoted himself during the years of his first stay in Milan. In 1977 Charles Dent, a passionate devotee of the Italian Renaissance, became enamored with the idea of bringing about Leonardo's failed experiment, setting up a special foundation in Pennsylvania, the Leonardo da Vinci's Horse, which commissioned artist Nina Akamu to create the work. In 2001, the completed sculpture was donated to the city and placed in Piazza della Libertà.

1.

The Vitruvian Man

The Vitruvian Man
The Vitruvian Man - Credit: Comune di Vinci

The large wooden sculpture that stands in Piazza Guido Masi, behind the Castle of Conti Guidi, was donated to the city in 1987 by the artist himself, Mario Ceroli. It draws inspiration from the well known drawing of the Gallerie dell'Accademia in Venice in which Leonardo depicts the idea of proportion expressed by Vitruvius Pollione. The three-dimensional version of the work honors the modernity and dynamism of Leonardo's drawing in which Mario Ceroli had already been interested since the 1960s.

The statue, which interprets the Renaissance principle of man as the measure of all things, has become a symbol of the city of Vinci and its inextricable bond with Leonardo.

1.

Leonardo's baptism

Cecco Bonanotte's baptismal font and sculpture cycle
Cecco Bonanotte's baptismal font and sculpture cycle - Credit: Comune di Vinci

In the Church of Santa Croce where Leonardo da Vinci was baptized, the chapel that still preserves the 15th-century baptismal font houses a sculpture cycle dedicated to the Story of Salvation by Cecco Bonanotte. The sculptures that comprise the cycle are distinguished by that sense of refined lightness and particular chromatic sensitivity that master Bonanotte manages to instill in his creations. The work, commissioned by the Parish of Santa Croce, was carried out in 2010 with the contribution of the Municipality of Vinci and the Ente Cassa di Risparmio of Florence.

 
1.

Dialogue beyond time and space

Dialogue Beyond Time and Space. Leonardo da Vinci and Qi Baishi
Dialogue Beyond Time and Space. Leonardo da Vinci and Qi Baishi

A tribute to art and its ability to transcend time and foster dialogue between peoples: you find all this in the Chinese artist Wu Weishan's sculpture, "Dialogue beyond time and space: the master of Italian art Leonardo da Vinci and the Chinese painter Qi Baishi," donated to the city of Vinci in January 2020. The work consists of two bronzes depicting Leonardo da Vinci and the father of modern Chinese painting, Qi Baishi, engaged in a kind of hypothetical conversation beyond time and geographical distance.

The sculpture is located on the terrace opposite Palazzina Uzielli, home of the Museo Leonardiano. A choice that not only gives visibility to the statues but also places them harmoniously in the surrounding landscape, still similar today to the one that served as the backdrop for Leonardo's birth and childhood.

 

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