Compare and contrast the artistic philosophy between Leonardo Da Vinci and Michelangelo

Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo are globally recognized for their work in the history of art. Both men were painters, inventors, sculptors, and anatomists. Their work was in prime during the Renaissance period in Italy[1]. The Renaissance period was marked by an interest in nature and education. The improved literacy levels encouraged more travel and inventions. Books available at the time invigorated the transmission of ideas and artistic development in Europe with a philosophical approach to living. During the Renaissance, religion was a major component of the live in the society[2]. Leonardo and Michelangelo are amongst the most prominent Italian artists whose work dominated the world at the beginning of the sixteenth century. Among their noticeable works, some are related to religion with Leonardo having painted the Last Super and Michelangelo the Sistine Chapel Ceiling. Both artists were also focused on presenting the human form accurately that they engaged in anatomy. Another common trait about the artists is the use of perspective and illusionism as well as moving away from mechanical precision to be able to create desired visual effects[3]. This article aims to compare and show disparities the pieces of work developed by Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo. The paper will focus on the Last Supper and the Creation of Adam, and then the Sistine Chapel Ceiling and Mona Lisa.

                                                            Leonardo da Vinci

Leonardo was a great painter as well as a scientist and engineer. He kept accurate records of observations he made in nature, such as moving flood water and human anatomical drawings. Leonardo was an apprentice to an artist called Verrocchio. The skills and new art quality portrayed by Leonardo separated him from the other artists. Leonardo made original works from the perception he had of the world around him. His thinking was free from any constraints in the past, and he rarely made references to antiquity in his works[4]. Leonardo believed that it was a man’s judgment that guided the soul. The soul is the part of man that directs the formation and the movement of our body. Leonardo concludes that it is the dominant link the soul has with human judgment that enables the painter to move the arms, making copies of himself in the way the soul sees. Leonardo also explained that common sense was the seat of the soul that transmitted commands through the tendon, to the muscles, to the nerves and then to the joints of the bones. Therefore, according to Leonardo, judgment is the means of the soul to manifest its power over the formation and the movement of our bodies[5]. As an artist Leonardo is recognized for pieces like the Mona Lisa and the Last Supper


Michelangelo was a prominent sculptor, painter, architect, and poet. Additionally, the artist was among the founders of the high Renaissance style, and he is considered the most influential forefather of the late Renaissance….

[1]  Springfield Art Association . 2009. Portfolio 40: Leonardo da Vinci & Michelangelo. Springfield Art Association .

[2]  Hartt, F. 2003. The New Catholic Encyclopedia 2nd edition. U.S.A.: Thomson Gale.

[3] Springfield Art Association . 2009. Portfolio 40: Leonardo da Vinci & Michelangelo. Springfield Art Association .

[4]  Zöllner, Frank. 2000. ““Ogni pittore dipinge sè”. Leonardo da Vinci and “automimesis”.”

[5] Ibid

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