Leonardo da Vinci: The Daedalian Mythmaker

Leonardo da Vinci: The Daedalian Mythmaker

by Giancarlo Maiorino
     
 

This study is the first to consider the whole body of Leonardo's works with an eye to a comprehensive interpretation that combines both cultural history and the history of details. According to Maiorino, Leonardo's was a myth making mode of activity that had a Daedalian range and affected art and technology alike. As both artist and inventor, Leonardo did not

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Overview

This study is the first to consider the whole body of Leonardo's works with an eye to a comprehensive interpretation that combines both cultural history and the history of details. According to Maiorino, Leonardo's was a myth making mode of activity that had a Daedalian range and affected art and technology alike. As both artist and inventor, Leonardo did not separate reason from experience, empiricism from abstraction, an attitude Maiorino characterizes as "Anti-Humanism." Rather than accepting the earlier view that the culture of the Renaissance was divided, he argues that Anti-Humanism was present from the start in such founders as Petrarch and Alberti and continued to be a current in later authors and artists; hence the significance of Leonardo to Humanism and to Baroque and Renaissance culture at large.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Maiorino gives the reader a fresh look at Leonardo that clarifies the parts of his enterprise without sacrificing the whole. Indeed, dialogism and Daedalian myth making provide a holistic grasp of Leonardo that is intuitive, explanatory, and illuminating. It is surprising and satisfying how often Maiorino is able to offer fresh insights and perspectives.”
—James V. Morollo, Columbia University

“This book is a coherent discussion of Leonardo’s various undertakings in music, weapons design, inventions practical and fantastic from the notebooks, and of course, the paintings. Maiorino’s delicate use of Bakhtin’s concept of dialogue to encompass the complex relation of humanist/anti-humanist tendencies in Leonardo and his world is exemplary in its use of theory to illuminate practice.”
—Michael Holquist, Yale University

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780271008172
Publisher:
Penn State University Press
Publication date:
08/07/1992
Pages:
320
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.72(d)

Meet the Author

Giancarlo Maiorino is Professor of Comparative Literature and Director of Renaissance Studies at Indiana University. He is the author of Adam "New Born and Perfect": The Renaissance Promise of Eternity (1987), The Cornucopian Mind and the Baroque Unity of the Arts (Penn State, 1990), and The Portrait of Eccentricity: Arcimboldo and the Mannerist Grotesque (Penn State, 1991).

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