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Comparing Leonardo Da Vinci with Michelangelo Essay

Leonardo Da Vinci and Michelangelo Buonarroti were, and still are considered to be two of the greatest minds, even geniuses of the Renaissance. But which one is more of a genius than the other? Leonardo Da Vinci was born on April 15th, 1452, son to a notary called Ser Piero. Ser Pier has sex with a woman called Catarina, which resulted in her pregnancy. For a believed reason that Catarina was the Daughter of a farmer, they never got married. Ser Pier later married another woman, when he was 25, which is the time Leonardo was born. As for Michelangelo, he was born on March 6, 1475, to a father called Ludovico, and a mother named Francesca, who was not capable of taking care of him. She sent her son to a family of stone cutters, and whose wife became Michelangelo’s mother.

His real mother Francesca died when he was only six years old. Both Michelangelo and Da Vinci lived hard lives, and received little care from their parents. The two distinctive artists, have many things they share in common, amongst background, interests, and accomplishments, however, they also have many differences, which makes each one diverse from the other, and finally confirm that Leonardo Da Vinci has idiosyncratic qualities, making him more of a genius than Michelangelo.

Although there is a twenty three year gap between both Italian artists, they both have many common qualities. Leonardo’s first works of art were paintings, and were made at the age of seventeen, one of which is called “Ginevra de Benci”. In this magnificent painting he drew a portrait a young woman, with an amazing background of a huge trees, and then behind those, a bridge, and an evening-blue sky. He even managed to catch the outlines of the leaves of the trees, which were glowing as the setting sun hit them from the back. As for Michelangelo, his first works of art were mainly sculptures. His first sculpture was the Apollo-David, when he was sixteen years old. This is also a remarkable peace of art, mainly because he was able to turn a peace of rock in to a very realistic model of a human. The minor curves, and bumps an actual man’s body would have in Apollo’s position, were included in the statue.

Every body part was in the correct position in relation to the rest of the body. The veins, and every body detail were included in the statue, which makes it significant. These two artists, both painted magnificent paints, and sculpted marvelous statues. Leonardo and Michelangelo were both great poem writers. In his poems, Da Vinci wrote about exploring his soul, and demonstrated strong critical thinking, as well as intelligence. Michelangelo’s poems were mainly about animals, and his loved ones, one he wrote about called Elizabetha. Their curiosity, and will to improve their arts, gave them the power to dissect human bodies, of criminals, and study them. Although Leonardo studied them more thoroughly, Michelangelo also dissected them to know how the body was assembled. Michelangelo was bisexual and none of his paintings were focused upon one sex.

As for Leonardo, he is also believed to be bisexual because he painted many women, and also was convicted twice of sodomizing a young seventeen year old, and spent two years in prison, which probably means he was attracted to men as well. To add to the magnificence of these two people, they were both highly skilled in architecture. Michelangelo invented a new architectural form, which solved the Renaissance problem of combining the classical columns with the modern division of storeys. Michelangelo’s giant orders became widely used. There are eight giant order pilasters on the Palazzo Conservatori, which came from Michelangelo.

Also, he came up with the idea of staircases, which were used then, and are still used now. Leonardo Da Vinci however, took his architectural abilities to the edge, and created architectural monuments that surpassed his time period, and were declined in 1502 by engineers because they did not think they would work. However, on the 31st of October, 2001, a bridge was built, based upon Leonardo Da Vinci’s notes, which ere found after he passed away. The bridge worked and has a very modern shape. These two superb artists are so much alike, yet they are very different as well.

Michelangelo had his very own aspects which made him a unique person. Michelangelo was a person brilliant in sculptures only. On august 4, 1983, Pope Julius II Della Rovere told Michelangelo to paint the Sistine Chapel. Although never experienced with paint, especially fresco painting, he painted the whole ceiling by himself, standing up while most painters that painted ceilings did it lying on their backs. He asked his old friend Francesco Granacci to help him, as well as four other fresco painters. However, when he saw that they weren’t as good as he thought, and have the imagination he wanted, he dismissed them and continued by himself. All he had was two men that helped make the paint. Michelangelo was very bad at
mathematics, and languages. He failed to learn how to speak Latin, which was taught to most nobles in Italy. After being taught by Ghirlandaio, he soon excelled to being even better than his teacher, and walking his own path and trying new things. Rock is one of the hardest objects to work, and craft with. However, for Michelangelo, he turned a piece of dull marble, or other rock, into a work of art. “It would be impossible to find a body showing greater mastery of art possessing more beautiful members, or a nude with more detail in the muscles. Veins, and nerves …”. His work was so amazing, you could see the veins in the hands, feet, and sometimes neck.

You would also notice the areas where the skin folds, like the area behind the knee, and even the natural body curves. Michelangelo was also somewhat an architecture. He designed some monuments, that have not been proven successful, however possibly would be. He also came up with the idea of staircases which we use today. His fascination with the human body, sculpture, to a minimal extent architecture, and his will to try his own ideas, made Michelangelo Buonarroti a one of a kind artist.

Leonardo Da Vinci excelled in so many areas of study and work that, unlike Michelangelo, is more like a genius. Leonardo was born twenty-three years before Michelangelo was. By the age of seventeen he was already painting magnificent paintings, and curious in the sciences and mathematic. One way to recognize a painting done by Leonardo is the hair. Leonardo makes the person’s hair angelic, smooth, almost like silk. The hair is given life, it goes through one another, and fades, then comes back. As he studied light, and its affect on how something looked, he fine-tuned his paintings abilities. Using light, he would give his paintings a more three-dimensional effect, making them seem even more alive then before. This exceptional artist also used his knowledge of mathematics to put everything into a scale, and make sure everything would seem normal, in the right size in correspondence to the other items in the paintings, and proportional.

Although he might have acquired his knowledge and abilities by studying previous geniuses, he able to hold all that massive amount of knowledge, use it, imply it, research it even further and take it to a high level, and even help mankind. Da Vinci also studied nature. That helped him with his paintings which included a forest, or field or anything of that type, and he knew what everything had to look like. He used scientific inquiry while running observations and experiments. He observed something closely, then tested that observation over and over till he knew it had to be correct. Then he drew accurately what he needed and wrote notes to himself. He published a book about the Theory of Mechanics. Volumes were written by him on many topics, such as the nature of the sun, moon and stars, and he even wrote volumes about the formation of fossils, and flight. Leonardo used his knowledge of aerodynamics to create the first flying machine, that functioned properly, as far as flying is concerned.

He also invented the bicycle, a helicopter, a machine resembling a car, and many weapons for war. While he worked for the Duke of Milan, he took the role of a battle strategist and weapons engineer. His warfare creations include missiles, machine guns, grenades, mortars and tanks, and many more. However, he stopped sharing his inventions after he released the submarine, saying that all these weapons could be used for evil purposes. When his notes, and notebooks were analysed, it showed he had a spirit of scientific inquiry, and mechanical inventiveness, that was centuries ahead of his time.

Somehow, he realized that it was not the sun that changed locations, but it is us, the Earth, that turns. Also, Da Vinci saw a possibility of constructing a telescope, which never happened in his lifetime, but did in ours. He called it “…making glasses to see the moon enlarged”. Leonardo excelled in so many things, such as anatomy, zoology, botany, geology, optics, aerodynamics, and many more…which is a quite significant amount of topics to be good in, only pushing him closer towards being a genius.

Two men, from the same region, each the same, yet unique in their same way. Michelangelo and Leonardo have many differences, yet in the same time have many things which they share in common. Some of their interest areas are the same, yet Da Vinci has more topics which he covered in his lifetime, and stood out in. What makes these men even more outstanding is the fact that they both came from poor families, which could only afford them a regular education, while other, richer children went to better schools, and got a better education. Yet these poor men surpassed these rich people, and shone. Leonardo however was dyslexic, and often wrote backwards, and because he was illegitimate, was not allowed to enter a college.

He succeeded in over six very different topics, and even invented things to help man, and others not very useful yet show his genius. In the last years of his life, he worked for a king, and created a robot which looked like a lion, and with every two steps, its stomach opens and shows a bundle of flowers. Although it sounds simple, it definitely is not, to create a robot. Leonardo could come up with the hardest things, and also the simplest, and it is this quality, which makes him a genius, using his knowledge to help man, and extend the discoveries of proceeding men and women. Da Vinci used his ability to help everyone, not only himself. He shared his magnificent intelligence, and that, in all, makes him a genius.


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