By Janet Dodrill
On a recent trip to Las Vegas, I made a point of seeing “Da Vinci the Exhibition” at The Venetian’s Imagine Exhibitions Gallery. The exhibit brought to light many of the artworks and inventions by mastermind Leonardo Da Vinci. The gallery was segmented to show different types of his work. Large printed posters with a comprehensive history of the artist lined the walls, and many fun facts were revealed. In one of the first rooms was his small body of paintings (reproductions were used), some finished, some unfinished, including the Mona Lisa, The Last Supper, work from when he studied with master artist Verrocchio, and other works, and even a few paintings that have not been authenticated.
Most other sections of the exhibit showcased enlarged sketch book pages and ideas and inventions brought to life with real scale models – built staying relatively close to Da Vinci’s designs. One room had lens optics and a mirrored room, another room had constructions for war including a tank, a portable bridge, a multi-shooting mechanical device, a rising ladder and platform for invading a castle over a moat, and other designs, some purchased for use in war. Animated 3D video screens showed how some of the constructions worked. He also created pulley devices and tools, many of which involved motion when used. An underwater suit, parachute, and flying machine were also in the exhibit.
I spent about an hour and a half there, really absorbing the breadth of Da Vinci’s work and genius. Though it was not a typical Vegas show, this limited engagement exhibit was well put-together and inexpensive. An adult ticket cost $27.50 but if you see a Vegas show you may find a coupon code in the program.
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