Da Vinci—The Genius exhibition: New Mexico 2018

Jul 14, 2017

The New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science (NMMNHS) hosts a special exhibition, Da Vinci—The Genius February 10 through July 29, 2018. Da Vinci—The Genius was created by Grande Exhibitions with the assistance of Museo Leonardo da Vinci – Rome, and many experts in Italy and France to provide a truly authentic experience.

“The Museum has not hosted an exhibition of this scope since the blockbuster Titanic exhibition," said Margie Marino, the Museum’s executive director. “This is a world-class exhibition that we anticipate will draw visitors from all over the United States.”

Leonardo da Vinci was an uncommon talent at a very uncommon time: the Italian Renaissance. Born out of wedlock in the year 1452, da Vinci was forced by his modest circumstances to make his own way in the world. He was largely self-educated, using his insatiable curiosity and observational skills to create artworks of extraordinary beauty and hundreds of inventions of every possible type. He was an artist, inventor, musician, scientist, and philosopher. Hundreds of years before these inventions became commonplace, he designed a car, prototypes for manned flight, a bicycle, scuba gear—so many things that it was difficult to provide the full range of his interests within this 15,000-square-foot exhibition.

According to Michael J. Gelb, the author of How to Think Like Leonardo da Vinci (Delacorte Press, 1998), curiosity is one of seven important steps to emulating da Vinci’s genius. An examination of his life and his work inspires one to utilize all his or her talents, and is very much a survival skill relevant to living one’s best life today.

To apply all of one’s effort, skill, and interest to every plan and problem is the great educational message of the exhibition, which includes a feature on the most popular of da Vinci’s works, (and perhaps the most popular artwork of all time) Mona Lisa. A multimedia presentation provides a forensic analysis and an in-depth look at this masterpiece, allowing the visitor to gain an understanding that is possible nowhere else.

“This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience,” said Marino. “It’s a compelling reason to plan a trip to Albuquerque, New Mexico in 2018.”

Leonardo da Vinci is universally hailed as one of the world’s geniuses. What made this unique, gifted individual so revered throughout the years? Are there lessons in his multi-disciplinary approach, analytical observation, and his power to use these processes to create that could inform us today? Da Vinci-inspired programming has been developed that extrapolates what we can learn from the life and interests of one of the worlds true Renaissance men. In addition, celebrated author Gelb outlines seven key processes that unleash the genius in everyone.

Instilling a love of learning and supporting the growth and development of creativity involves the use of all our capabilities. Leonardo da Vinci was a genius for whom whole person learning resulted in many famous inventions and remarkable, timeless art pieces.  

An original da Vinci drawing is on exhibit with other master drawings at the New Mexico Museum of Art in Santa Fe, with related programming, through Sept. 17.