Spring Device (c.1500; Italy) by Leonardo da Vinci

Spring Device - Leonardo da Vinci - c.1500; Italy

Artwork Information

TitleSpring Device
ArtistLeonardo da Vinci
Datec.1500; Italy
Art MovementHigh Renaissance
Current LocationMuseo del Prado, Madrid, Spain

About Spring Device

The artwork titled “Spring Device” was created by the illustrious artist Leonardo da Vinci circa 1500, in Italy. It is executed in ink on paper, showcasing da Vinci’s precision and skill with drawing materials. The piece is emblematic of the High Renaissance period, typified by innovation and a deep interest in scientific investigation and mechanical design. Specifically, the artwork falls within the genre of sketch and study, illustrating the investigative nature of da Vinci’s approach to understanding the world around him. The drawing is part of the collection at the Museo del Prado in Madrid, Spain.

The artwork displays a meticulous study of a mechanical device that embodies the interplay of gears and springs. A central barrel-shaped component appears to house a coiled spring, with several toothed wheels and gear mechanisms arranged above it. These elements are illustratively layered, indicating a grasp of spatial relationships and mechanical function. To the left side of the main structure, there is a lever or handle, suggesting the means by which the device may be wound or operated. Leonardo’s handwriting, visible at the foot of the device, adds a personal touch to the work, highlighting it as not just a scientific figure but also as a primary historical document bearing the direct mark of the artist. The intricate linework and shading methods give the sketch a three-dimensional quality, typical of da Vinci’s attention to detail and mastery of illustration, which served as a precursor to modern engineering drawings.

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