When you hear the name Leonardo da Vinci you automatically think “Genius” with a capital “G.” Such Genius that he seemingly came from nowhere to walk among us. Science fiction writers love to imagine Leonardo as a brother from another planet or a time-traveling tourist from the future. The High Museum of Art’s exhibition Leonardo da Vinci: Hand of the Genius (open until February 21, 2010) restores the Genius to his own place and time without diminishing him, as if that were possible. We may stand upon the shoulders of giants such as da Vinci, but da Vinci had shoulders to stand on as well. This exhibition gives names to those guiding hands that helped da Vinci reach his first heights. Please come over to Picture This at Big Think to read more of "Guiding Hands."
[Image: Andrea del Verrocchio (Italian, 1435-1488) and Leonardo da Vinci (Italian, 1452-1519), Beheading of St. John the Baptist, from the altar of the Baptistery with scenes from the life of St. John the Baptist, 1477-1478 (payments until 1483), silver, 12 1/8 x 16 ½ inches. Museo dell’Opera del Duomo, Florence. Photo: Antonio Quattrone, 2009. Courtesy Opera di Santa Maria del Fiore.]
[Many thanks to The High Museum of Art for providing me with the image above and to Yale University Press for providing me with a review copy of Leonardo da Vinci and the Art of Sculpture.]