Watermarks: Leonardo da Vinci and the Mastery of Nature


by Leslie A. Geddes (Author)

Leonardo's enduring fascination with water―from its artistic representation to aquatic inventions and hydraulic engineering.

Formless, mutable, transparent: the element of water posed major challenges for the visual artists of the Renaissance. To the engineers of the era, water represented a force that could be harnessed for human industry but was equally possessed of formidable destructive power. For Leonardo da Vinci, water was an enduring fascination, appearing in myriad forms throughout his work. In Watermarks, Leslie Geddes explores the extraordinary range of Leonardo’s interest in water and shows how artworks by him and his peers contributed to hydraulic engineering and the construction of large river and canal systems.

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