29 Mar Leonardo Da Vinci and the contemporary fresco
The Genius of Leonardo revisited through the artistic and interior design sensitivity of the Mariani company.
Numerous events and initiatives are planned throughout 2019 to mark the 500th anniversary of the death of the versatile Florentine artist, and we at Mariani Affreschi want to pay tribute to one of the greatest artists of all time by proposing some of his immortal works using the fresco technique.
Many of these works have been lost or were not completed by the author and have come down to us only through the preparatory cartoons that our Masters of Art have reinterpreted with perfectionism and precision, such as this fresco taken from the cartoon of St Anne, a drawing in black and white chalk, wetted in places, produced by Leonardo da Vinci in about 1501-1505, which now hangs in the National Gallery of London.
The composition of the three figures is light and sculptured at the same time, a testament to Leonardo’s interest in ancient Greek and Roman sculptures.
Other frescoes that we have undertaken come from Leonardo’s studies on war machines conducted during his stay at the Court of Ludovico il Moro, in Milan.
The Renaissance Maestro used his mechanical skills to design a chariot with scythe blades mounted on the front and sides connected to wheels, a lethal weapon that would allow literally ploughing through lines of enemies.
The Battle of Anghiari is another clear example of a fresco taken from a preparatory drawing. In this case, the original painting has been lost, but a copy was created in the 16th century by Rubens.
The vehemence of the knights is in contrast with the lightness of the brushstrokes and the muffled tones of the fresco, making it ideal for contemporary furnishings.
Typical of Leonardo’s studies on paper are his notes that appear to be untranslatable, as can be seen in his iconic Vitruvian Man. It represents the perfect proportionality of the human body, which is harmoniously inscribable in the two “perfect” figures of the circle representing both the universe and divine perfection, and the square, symbolising the Earth.
This type of writing, however, did not only involve a change of direction, but also the presence of curved and wide forms in the letters, as well as centrifugal and centripetal traces.
In fact, Leonardo’s writing contained rhythm, movement and a remarkable sense of space and form. To us, this appears almost as a decorative motif that perfectly matches the minimal taste of today’s interior design, as demonstrated below by the placement of Leonardo’s fresco in a private house furnished in a modern key.
Mariani Affreschi offers other works inspired by the Genius of Leonardo Da Vinci, confident of the quality of their work and the timeless beauty of the works by the great Florentine artist that we still remember today more than 500 years later.
Last Supper, preparatory stage