Leonardo’s machines

LEONARDO, la macchina dell’immaginazione / LEONARDO, The Imagination Machine

posted in exhibitions

LEONARDO, la macchina dell’immaginazione / LEONARDO, The Imagination Machine

LEONARDO, la macchina dell’immaginazione / LEONARDO, The Imagination Machine

A path for sensitive machines


Palazzo Reale, Milan, 2019
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«Musician», «Architect and General Engineer», map-maker, and painter. Because of his studies and of the machines he designed, Leonardo is sometimes defined less as an artist than as a «scientist». Sometimes he is considered as the truest embodiment of the Renaissance man, with the fickleness that we recognize as such a familiar trait of our time, but that resulted troublesome at his; with his curiosity, with his accuracy as an observer and his love for recording every detail as a sign of an (almost) invisible harmony. He used to complain about the separation between theory and practice, and he used to repeat that experience is the basis for a “scientifical” vision.

Leonardo is very close to the contemporary man, who feels the necessity to retrieve the care and the attention to select tools and invent new ones that should be fitter for research, to sharpen his senses to get to observe the world. For this reason, the space designed by Studio Azzurro is a great imagination machine inspired by Leonardo da Vinci’s machine, engineering and mechanics studies. This experiential path is made of observation, but also of gestures, and of awareness of the point of view that activates vision and then thought.

Leonardo’s machines here turn into narrative devices and welcome the visitor in a shaded environment where the colours of wood, canvas and paper stand out. Interaction takes place with different systems: presence, action, and voice, too, function as activators through combination of words that gradually reveal the contents of the path. The installations explore the objects of Leonardo’s studies: nature, cities, landscape, machines for production and war machines, the human body, painting.

24 video projectors
3 media players
8 PCs
18 loudspeakers
4 modified microphones for interaction
8 modified torches for interaction
7 wooden stage machines

Project and design Studio Azzurro
Curated by Treccani
Art direction Fabio Cirifino, Laura Marcolini
DOP Fabio Cirifino
Shooting Mario Coccimiglio, Alberto Danelli, Studio Azzurro Archive
Video editing and post-production Alberto Danelli, Piera Leonetti, Silvia Pellizzari
Sound Giovanni Bettinelli
Graphics and chalcographic prints Beatrice Giovannini
Interactive systems Samuele Albani
Mounting technical design Daniele De Palma
Assistant to the mounting technical design Francesco Martinazzo
Performers Francesco Marilungo, Alice Raffaelli
Voices Marta Comerio, Fabio Sarti
Iconographic and textual research Laura Marcolini, in collaboration with Edoardo Villata
Project management Olivia Demuro
Production assistants Laura Boggia, Ciro Rebuzzini
General management Carmen Leopardi
Scientific consultant Edoardo Villata
Set design and mounting Krea Allestimenti
Multimedia mounting Neo Tech
Production Treccani

Disegno del progetto per Leonardo, la macchina dell’immaginazione Macchina di Leonardo da Vinci Leonardo, la macchina dell’immaginazione Leonardo, la macchina dell’immaginazione Leonardo, la macchina dell’immaginazione Tavolo anatomico con gessi e disegni di Leonardo Tavolo anatomico con gessi e microfoni Proiezione con disegno di Leonardo di scena di guerra Disegni di volto di Leonardo da Vinci