Sunday, February 01, 2009

The Genius of DaVinci

I was invited to attend an exclusive viewing of the DaVinci exhibit at OMSI.  Wow.  It was fun to look at everything without a crush of people.  The cookies and wine were really yummy too, and we got to listen to a lecture by an OSU professor of history whose specialty included the renaissance.  She connected some dots for me.  Like my mental roadmap of Portland, I don't see the big picture of history.  I see neighborhoods and the arteries that connect them, and I don't know about all the neighborhoods or who necessarily borders who.  A light went ding when she pointed out that Columbus sailed during DaVinci's lifetime.  I'd always held the 'Age of Exploration' and the renaissance as disconnected periods.  Now they touch.  Now they're intimate.

What can I say about DaVinci that hasn't already been said?  I developed a new appreciation for the Mona Lisa.  I got to get a good look at (a reproduction of) The Last Supper and frown at John.  Or Mary.  Or John.  Or Mary.  Is that Judas at the table, or did he already take off?  And the models of his proposed engineering designs were lots and lots of fun.  

I want to step into the room of mirrors naked.  Just saying.

So, I would recommend the exhibit, with the understanding that this stuff will be really ho hum for some people.  If you love art and history and gears and screws and levers and pulleys, you'll be all over this, unless you like Dinotopeia with all those kinds of gears and screws and levers and pulleys, and paleontology, in which case not so much.  Okay, if you like renaissance art, engineering and history, you'll be all over this.  As much as I wanted more more more, it took a long time to go through the exhibit, so more more more would have exhausted me.

Gearpunk, anyone?


Melissa said...

Man, that was fun! I have to go again....LEt me know when you are going with the kids, OK?

Kami said...

I will! I suspect we'll go during this week sometime right after school to hopefully miss traffic and crowds.

Like that's going to happen ... sigh.

Which is what made the exclusive peek especially great.

Carissa said...

I'm glad it was good! We're taking Kate next weekend. I've been looking forward to it. I'm a huge Da Vinci fan and the Renaissance was one of my favorite time periods to study. What not a lot of folks realize is that it was more of a wave than a time period. Started in Italy and slowly made its way west over several decades. It's fascinating to see the progression of invention and philosophies.

Melissa said...

I wouldn't recommend this exhibit for children. They would be bored within minutes. The few kids that were at the reception were tweens and teens and were rather indifferent to the whole thing.