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Art Appreciation

March 4 2008 Art Appreciation Newsletter

Leonardo da Vinci was an apprentice to Andrea del Verrocchio, master sculptor and painter from Florence during the fifteenth century.

Some readers may be familiar with the painting, "The Baptism of Christ," attributed to Verrocchio and his workshop. Indeed, one of his star pupils was Leonardo da Vinci (another being Sandro Botticelli). Both the landscape and the angel with curly hair have been credited to Leonardo. This painting can be seen at the Uffizi Gallery in Florence.

Another of Verrocchio's works, based on the Biblical figure King David, is the statue "David With the Head of Goliath" (1466). Some of the foremost scholars of Leonardo da Vinci believe that this statue is a portrait of a youthful Leonardo. It can be seen at the Museo Nazionale del Bargello in Florence.

If we think of this as the business of "Verrocchio and Company," perhaps we can better understand why the master Verrocchio takes credit for his pupil's work (in this case, Leonardo da Vinci).

There is one more sculpture by Verrocchio that must be mentioned, at Leonardo's defense, and that is "The Boy With a Dolphin." Although attributed to Verrocchio, the facial features are similar to a study "The Head of a Boy" by Leonardo, found in the Louvre.

There is no doubt in my mind that Verrocchio gained success and fame with the help of his apt pupil Leonardo da Vinci.
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Costume Designer and Art Director Take Awards
The winners of the 80th Academy Awards have been announced. Much attention has been given to the actors and actresses but without the costume designer and art director, the show would not go on.

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Camille Gizzarelli, Art Appreciation Editor

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