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Sources, Iconography and Science
In Leonardo’s Fables: Sources, Iconography and Science, Giuditta Cirnigliaro explores the compositional methods and sources of Leonardo’s fables to investigate their relationship with illustrations and scientific studies. Often considered secondary works with respect to his public masterpieces, in this study Leonardo’s fables are revealed to be part of an aesthetic, scientific, and philosophical project intended for the acquisition of world knowledge.
By concentrating on the chaotic character of Leonardo’s manuscripts, the book gradually discloses the artist’s creative thinking that uses the page as a space for experimentation. Ultimately, Leonardo’s employment of fables allows him to tie together his technical and artistic skills, empirical observation, and experience, to show the mechanical interaction of forces at the basis of every physical phenomenon.