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Royal Collection Trust/© Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2014

Recto: The superficial anatomy of the shoulder and neck. Verso: The muscles of the shoulder

Overview

Creator: Leonardo da Vinci (Vinci 1452-Amboise 1519) (artist)
Creation Date: 
c.1510-11
Materials: 
Pen and ink with wash, over black chalk
Dimensions: 
29.2 x 19.8 cm
RCIN 
919003
Reference(s): 
K&P 137
RL 19003
XQGE 2004/5 H2H 5
Acquirer: Charles II, King of Great Britain (1630-85)
Provenance: 
Bequeathed to Francesco Melzi; from whose heirs purchased by Pompeo Leoni, c.1582-90; Thomas Howard, 2nd Earl of Arundel, by 1630; Probably acquired by Charles II; Royal Collection by 1690
Description:

This sheet displays the full range of Leonardo’s illustrative techniques, showing the structure of the muscles of the shoulder. Pectoralis major is divided into parts to represent the lines of force along which it acts. This method reaches its logical conclusion in the drawing at top right, which is an example of Leonardo’s ‘thread model’. This technique - invented by Leonardo - reduced the muscles to single cords along their central lines of force, such that the spatial structure of an entire system can be perceived at once.

RL 19003v

Text adapted from Holbein to Hockney: Drawings from the Royal Collection

Further details

Category: 
Unframed Drawings / Watercolours