Leonardo da Vinci the man quirky, obsessive and playful, says Gerard DeGroot. These boasts were aspirational. Leonardo was at ease with being a misfit: illegitimate, gay, vegetarian, left-handed, easily distracted and at times heretical, says Isaacson. Meanwhile, having made a profit, Ser Piero bought a plaque decorated with a heart pierced by an arrow, which he gave to the peasant. John the Baptist, a work that won such admiration that "men and women, young and old" flocked to see it "as if they were attending a great festival". In 1506 he returned to Milan. Ludovico was certainly impressed. Vasari also tells us that in his last days, Leonardo sent for a priest to make his confession and to receive the Holy Sacrament.
Leonardo da, vinci : The, biography review portrait
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Old age, from September 1513 to 1516, Leonardo spent much of his time living in the Belvedere in the Vatican in Rome, where Raphael and Michelangelo were both active at the time. Melzi was the principal heir and executor, receiving as well as money, Leonardo's paintings, tools, library and personal effects. Cecilia has the same enigmatic smile as the Mona Lisa, while the ermine she holds is rendered with stunning three-dimensional clarity. All we have today are a few reports that recall the fleeting splendours of these occasions, a source of frustration for art historians who would have preferred less ephemeral outputs for his genius. Vasari, the 16th century biographer of Renaissance painters tells of how a local peasant requested that Ser Piero ask his talented son to paint a picture on a round plaque. One, which he regarded as an omen, was when a kite dropped from the sky and hovered over his cradle, its tail feathers brushing his face.