Leonardo and the Last Supper

by Ross King

Doubleday Canada | September 25, 2012 | Kobo Edition (eBook)

Leonardo and the Last Supper is rated 4 out of 5 by 2.

Early in 1495, Leonardo da Vinci began work in Milan on what would become one of history's most influential and beloved works of art-The Last Supper. After a dozen years at the court of Lodovico Sforza, the Duke of Milan, Leonardo was at a low point personally and professionally: at forty-three, in an era when he had almost reached the average life expectancy, he had failed, despite a number of prestigious commissions, to complete anything that truly fulfilled his astonishing promise. His latest failure was a giant bronze horse to honor Sforza's father: His 75 tons of bronze had been expropriated to be turned into cannons to help repel a French invasion of Italy. The commission to paint The Last Supper in the refectory of a Dominican convent was a small compensation, and his odds of completing it were not promising: Not only had he never worked on a painting of such a large size-15' high x 30' wide-but he had no experience in the extremely difficult medium of fresco.
 
 In his compelling new book, Ross King explores how-amid war and the political and religious turmoil around him, and beset by his own insecurities and frustrations-Leonardo created the masterpiece that would forever define him. King unveils dozens of stories that are embedded in the painting. Examining who served as the models for the Apostles, he makes a unique claim: that Leonardo modeled two of them on himself. Reviewing Leonardo's religious beliefs, King paints a much more complex picture than the received wisdom that he was a heretic. The food that Leonardo, a vegetarian, placed on the table reveals as much as do the numerous hand gestures of those at Christ's banquet. As King explains, many of the myths that have grown up around The Last Supper are wrong, but its true story is ever more interesting. Bringing to life a fascinating period in European history, Ross King presents an original portrait of one of the world's greatest geniuses through the lens of his most famous work.

Format: Kobo Edition (eBook)

Published: September 25, 2012

Publisher: Doubleday Canada

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0307375986

ISBN - 13: 9780307375988

Found in: Art and Architecture

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Rated 3 out of 5 by from Masterful Ross King has done his homework. King paints a colourful picture of life in the 15th century and how war and religious upheaval effect the creation of Leonardo da Vinci's masterpiece "The Last Supper". It's not a page-turner but you will appreciate the unique perspective on this artistic genius. It was not as awe-inspiring as "Michelangelo and the Sistine Chapel" where the complications arising from that monumental task was much more exhilarating.
Date published: 2013-03-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Enlightening and enjoyable Like his earlier books about Brunelleschi, Michelangelo and the Impressionists, Ross King's book about Leonardo da Vinci and the creation of the Last Supper is a history and art history lesson told with rich detail and background context. Leonardo as a person, artist and true Renaissance man is described along with his Milanese patron, Ludovico Sforza, and other characters who form part of the story surrounding the creation of the Last Supper. King also discusses the theory about the Last Supper put forth in Dan Brown's novel, The Da Vinci Code, and explains why that theory is fiction. The author also sets out a detailed art history context for the Last Supper and allows the reader to understand why Leonardo was a genius.
Date published: 2012-11-05

– More About This Product –

Leonardo and the Last Supper

by Ross King

Format: Kobo Edition (eBook)

Published: September 25, 2012

Publisher: Doubleday Canada

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0307375986

ISBN - 13: 9780307375988

From the Publisher

Early in 1495, Leonardo da Vinci began work in Milan on what would become one of history's most influential and beloved works of art-The Last Supper. After a dozen years at the court of Lodovico Sforza, the Duke of Milan, Leonardo was at a low point personally and professionally: at forty-three, in an era when he had almost reached the average life expectancy, he had failed, despite a number of prestigious commissions, to complete anything that truly fulfilled his astonishing promise. His latest failure was a giant bronze horse to honor Sforza's father: His 75 tons of bronze had been expropriated to be turned into cannons to help repel a French invasion of Italy. The commission to paint The Last Supper in the refectory of a Dominican convent was a small compensation, and his odds of completing it were not promising: Not only had he never worked on a painting of such a large size-15' high x 30' wide-but he had no experience in the extremely difficult medium of fresco.
 
 In his compelling new book, Ross King explores how-amid war and the political and religious turmoil around him, and beset by his own insecurities and frustrations-Leonardo created the masterpiece that would forever define him. King unveils dozens of stories that are embedded in the painting. Examining who served as the models for the Apostles, he makes a unique claim: that Leonardo modeled two of them on himself. Reviewing Leonardo's religious beliefs, King paints a much more complex picture than the received wisdom that he was a heretic. The food that Leonardo, a vegetarian, placed on the table reveals as much as do the numerous hand gestures of those at Christ's banquet. As King explains, many of the myths that have grown up around The Last Supper are wrong, but its true story is ever more interesting. Bringing to life a fascinating period in European history, Ross King presents an original portrait of one of the world's greatest geniuses through the lens of his most famous work.

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