What Would da Vinci be doing Right Now?

Columbia University

Denise Budd teaches in the Core Curriculum program at Columbia University and has also taught a wide range of Renaissance art history classes at Rutgers University. She has published several articles on Leonardo da Vinci based on her studies of the artist and his documentary evidence. Following this interest in archival work, her current research has extended to the history of collecting Renaissance art in Gilded Age America, with a focus on the tapestry collector and dealer Charles Mather Ffoulke.


The unique Renaissance Man, Leonardo da Vinci, was something of an enigma. He was a painter who painted relatively few paintings, an architect who built no buildings and a sculptor from whom no works remain. He was primarily a theoretician who was willing to test his sometimes wild and improbable ideas. What do his sketches and paintings have to tell us about how he viewed the world? And how can we learn from them about the way this great man would approach the sometimes unanticipated challenges that face humanity today?



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