Masters of Invention: Leonardo da Vinci and Dali
Though this exhibit featured many reproductions and prints it was inspirational none the less to see Dali paired with one of the masters of invention Leonardo da Vinci.
Opt for the scenic staircase at the museum instead of the elevators whenever possible.
Had a fun time peering back through history and Da Vinci's sketches of waterwheels reproduced and enlarged as massive prints. This piece is a combo of contraptions such as; a balcony water lift for hand cranking and a wheel mounted atop a water well. Most likely unintentional but this looks like a face to me with the cords that run down to the counterweights.
Da Vinci had the ability to write with both hands, upside down and backwards and amazingly, to paint and draw with both hands. Which is something for me to work on improving. That off-hand technique had to be used working on the mural to avoid falling off the ladder or scaffold. I'm only able to paint with control using my off hand but the left-handed drawings look very childlike.
Many of Dali and Da Vinci's inventions were faithfully recreated many to life-size scale like the flying machine. Though some Dali original sculptures were display. The bust of a goddess turned into a cabinet with fuzzy ball appliqué. A rotary-style Lobster Telephone. There was a recreated, clear plastic mannequin, wearing a black beret, filled up to the shins with orange pebbles, plastic seaweed growing up the legs and down the arms like nerve-endings Intertwined within are little fish and the middle section of seaweed spins around.
On the left page are more of Da Vinci details numbered and lettered like a modern industrial design manual for toggles, gears and pullys, waterwheels, counter-weights and his invention for a diving bell linked to an oxygen mask. Aristotle first describes a diving bell in the 4th Century BCE. But Da Vinci's idea is remarkably similar to what salvage divers use to this day.
Another Dali original was this illusionistic bust titled " Nieuw Amsterdam" which transforms the closer you get from simple to complex. What a first looks like a war-painted brave emerges two figures with hats and robes holding a cup that is the nose, sections of chairs jut from the cheeks, the lips turn into a basket of fruit, the forehead a map featuring the Iberian peninsula, north African and Mediterranean coastlines. I started this piece above as a pen sketch in the gallery stunned by its detail and worked it to finish at home with FW inks and dip pen.