Leonardo da Vinci (Chapter 1-17)


Walter Isaacson


Meeting: December 21 @ 6-7:30 PM


Location: Kelly-McKenna Gallery, 1308 Third Avenue, Spring Lake, NJ


Wine Selection: Tenuta Le Calcinaie Vernaccia di San Gimignano


Summary: Drawing from thousands of pages in Leonardo da Vinci’s notebooks, Walter Isaacson's Leonardo da Vinci unveils an intimate portrait of the artist that intertwines his masterpieces with his scientific pursuits. From iconic works like The Last Supper and the Mona Lisa to his fervent exploration of anatomy, fossils, flying machines, and more, da Vinci's ability to bridge the humanities and sciences, exemplified by his Vitruvian Man, solidifies his status as history’s most creative genius.


In Isaacson's "luminous" account, Leonardo da Vinci's unconventional life, marked by his status as an illegitimate, gay, vegetarian, left-handed, and occasionally heretical misfit, serves as a reminder to embrace diversity and cultivate imaginative thinking. This biography, described as a "vigorous, insightful portrait" by The Washington Post, celebrates da Vinci's remarkable brilliance and eccentricities, portraying him as a timeless model for creativity and the power of thinking differently.


Wine: Vernaccia is a white wine produced from the
grape variety of the same name. It is the Tuscany region's only DOCG white: Vernaccia di San Gimignano, made in the hilltop village of San Gimignano, about 20 miles northwest of Siena. Vernaccia was wildly popular in the thirteenth century, served on the tables of kings and popes; mentioned by Dante Allighieri in The Divine
Comedy; and praised by Michelangelo. Of Vernaccia, the artist writes: "bacia, lecca, morde, picca, punge" meaning "kisses, licks, bites, pinches and stings" referring to its gentle caresses and lively energy on the palate. Crisp, mouthwatering lemon citrus, orchard fruits, herbs and minerals fill this exquisite example, made by winemaker Simone Santini at Le Calcinaie with organic methods. Pair with salty sheep and goat’s milk cheeses, charcuterie, vegetables, fish and poultry.


About Art Book Club: We meet monthly at Kelly-McKenna Gallery to discuss all topics art, art history, and design. 


You can purchase our monthly reading selections here at Thunder Road Books; (973) 436-0914.


Our monthly wine selection is available here at Bottle Shop of Spring Lake; (732) 449-5525

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