25 October 2012

Leonardo and the Last Supper; Ross King

Leonardo and the Last SupperLeonardo and the Last Supper by Ross King
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Having read a couple of fiction books about the Last Supper, it was interesting to read a non-fiction study. King does a great job of discussing Leonardo - his passions, his background, his style, etc. - but leaves some of the Last Supper out. What I mean is, there's information I would have liked to know (particularly about the actual painting, as Leonardo used oil rather than tempura) that wasn't included. Instead readers will get long digressions into the political situation in what we now call Italy and some about the religious issues of the time.

There is lots of trivia, and not a few unanswered questions (for example, why did the painting have a spot 15' in the air as its perfect perspective point?) that will fascinate readers. By the end, you'll know less about the painting and more about Leonardo. Which isn't all bad.

ARC provided by publisher.

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