Old man with ivy wreath and lion’s head (c.1494 – c.1519; Florence, Italy) by Leonardo da Vinci

Old man with ivy wreath and lion's head - Leonardo da Vinci - c.1494 - c.1519; Florence, Italy

Artwork Information

TitleOld man with ivy wreath and lion's head
ArtistLeonardo da Vinci
Datec.1494 - c.1519; Florence, Italy
Dimensions18.3 x 13.6 cm
Art MovementHigh Renaissance

About Old man with ivy wreath and lion's head

The artwork titled “Old man with ivy wreath and lion’s head” is a portrait believed to be crafted by Leonardo da Vinci, a master of the High Renaissance. Created during the period circa 1494 and 1519 in Florence, Italy, the piece is composed of chalk on paper, measuring 18.3 x 13.6 centimeters. Exemplifying the art movement’s emphasis on naturalism and character, the work exhibits a fine example of portraiture from this era.

In the artwork, Leonardo da Vinci’s profound skills in capturing human expression are evident. The portrait depicts an elderly man characterized by distinctive facial features, including deep-set eyes, a pronounced nose, and a furrowed brow, which contribute to an expression that appears weathered, yet full of character. His head is adorned with an ivy wreath, while a lion’s head is drawn below, adding to the classical themes often explored during the Renaissance. The masterful use of chalk lends the artwork a soft yet dynamic quality, capturing shadows and texture meticulously. The drawing not only reflects da Vinci’s interest in human emotion and anatomy but also illustrates his fascination with symbolic references and allegories, intertwining the human and the natural world in a singular composition.

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