Muscles of the neck and shoulders (c. 1515) by Leonardo da Vinci

Muscles of the neck and shoulders - Leonardo da Vinci - c. 1515

Artwork Information

TitleMuscles of the neck and shoulders
ArtistLeonardo da Vinci
Datec. 1515
Dimensions29.2 cm
Current LocationWindsor Castle, the Royal Library

About Muscles of the neck and shoulders

Leonardo da Vinci, a Renaissance artist and scientist, was known for his anatomical studies. His research included the skeleton and muscles of various parts of the body, which he combined with physiological research. One sequence of eight drawings depicts the muscles in the upper arm and shoulder region, including superficial muscles. These drawings also include additional notes on deep dissections of shoulder muscles, respiratory muscles and other structures in the body.

Da Vinci’s understanding of anatomy allowed him to rediscover mechanics that corresponded to emotions and movements of the soul. His artistic skills helped him highlight details that were important for medical purposes too. For example, da Vinci’s detailed drawings explicitly capture each muscle as they are positioned against others in order to better understand how motion occurs.

Da Vinci was able to create detailed anatomical studies due to his training in dissection methods. He studied cadavers while taking care not to limit them only to drawings but rather through extracting knowledge that could improve our understanding of anatomy in general.

Overall, da Vinci’s anatomical studies provide a unique glimpse into human physiology during his time period as well as modern times since these works have been used as foundational texts by scientists throughout history. They show us how far artists can push their craft when paired with scientific interests beyond producing beautiful art alone.

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