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Leonardo Da Vinci: The Scientist, the Humanist

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  • Thu 2 May, 6:00pm – 8:00pm


Club Garibaldi, 118 Tory St, Wellington


All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Free Admission

To commemorate the quincentennial anniversary of the death of Leonardo da Vinci, who died on 2nd May 1519, and to celebrate the prodigious polymath’s life and work, the Embassy of Italy is pleased to invite you to an evening of enlightening talks by two Wellington-based renowned experts.

In collaboration with Club Garibaldi and Circolo Italiano di Wellington.
Free event but RSVP necessary to wellington.promozione@esteri.it

David Hyams
“My working life taught me a great deal about myself and how the world works, My encounter with Leonardo was both profound and personal.”

David was born and bred in Wellington, completing an Arts Degree at Victoria University before going on to have an extensive career in Arts Administration. His career included lengthy experience in hospitality (including owning three restaurants and a bakery), nine years as Touring & Marketing Advisor to the Central Regional Arts Council (part of the QE11 Arts Council structure that preceded Creative New Zealand) then seven years in Porirua firstly as Manager of Page 90 and later as the inaugural Director of Pataka.

In 2008 David was invited by the New Zealand Academy of Fine Arts to coordinate the da Vinci Machines Exhibition for its Wellington Season. As David researched the “man and his machines”, he became intrigued and inspired by Leonardo’s curiosity and quest for practical engineering solutions.

David and his team expanded the vision of the exhibition and came up with the brand of “Touch the Mind of the Genius – Leonardo da Vinci.” David built a wing out of bamboo and canvas as was designed by Leonardo and flew it over Wellington harbour while 10,000 people watched on to see if it would work!! David’s perspective on da Vinci and his life and work is unique and controversial.

Chris Longhurst
Leonardo da Vinci: The Humanist
"The painter has the universe in his mind and hands.”
In celebration of Leonardo’s quincentenary, we recall the ‘divine’ painter’s master artworks which show his love of humans and nature, and we reflect on how his unitary vision still speaks to us today through the eloquence and clarity of his human compositions, botanical illustrations, and anatomical drawings.

Among the artworks revisited will be the world’s most famous smile, Mona Lisa, that spell-binding pictorial narrative, The Last Supper, and some of the most elusive expressions of human emotion every seen in visual art - John the Baptist, Ginevra Benci, Lady with an Ermine, plus Leonardo’s fascinating anatomical and botanical drawings.

Chris Longhurst is a specialist in theological aesthetics. He served as operatore didattico (educational officer) at the Vatican Museums, Rome, Italy, for over twelve years, and currently lectures at The Catholic Institute of Aotearoa New Zealand and Victoria University of Wellington.

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