Leonardo da Vinci was unquestionably a genius. Nearly everyone knows his name and the images of his most famous paintings, including the Last Supper and the Mona Lisa. Less people are familiar with his other works of genius, including his many inventions, which were so far ahead of his time that few could be produced with existing materials and manufacturing methods. His inventions are still up-to-date 500 years after his death and are currently used in the aviation, war, maritime, and automobile industries. He was proficient in all areas of art, science, engineering, and music. The major traveling exhibit that opens at the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture (MAC) in the gorgeous Browne’s Addition neighborhood in Spokane on June 3 aims to show how da Vinci mastered diverse subjects and fused them together through observation, insight, and inspiration. This unique exhibit includes sixty of da Vinci’s invention models with the same craftsmanship and beauty of the materials that the artist used in the 15th century.
Visitors can view twenty-three made-to-scale replicas of da Vinci’s artistic masterpieces, watch videos about his life, hear music composed by the artist, and check out interactive inventions and machines from the four codices: flight, civil machines, hydraulics and engineering, and military machines. This is a rare opportunity to consider all of his artistic masterpieces together along with many of his other creations.
The exhibition has been hosted by major museums including the Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago, Illinois; The Museum of Flight, Seattle, Washington; Exhibition Hall of the Eaton Centre, Montreal, Quebec, and the Fort Worth Museum of Science & History in Texas. It will run June 3 through September 5 at the MAC in Spokane, WA. The museum expects visitors from all over the region; if you are travelling here for the exhibit, Stratford Suites Spokane area extended stay hotel is close by and offers beautiful suites at affordable prices.
Tickets are available now through TicketsWest for Leonardo da Vinci: Man–Inventor–Genius, reserved by date and time. MAC members can buy tickets at a discount at the museum admissions counter (not restricted by date and time). If you are not a MAC member, this might be a good time to support the arts in Spokane and become one! Non-member exhibit prices are $18 for adults, $15 for seniors, and $8 for students.
On select Sundays, you can further explore the world of da Vinci at Renaissance Mix events at the MAC. These afternoon events include a cash bar with Italian wines, renaissance music performances, and lectures about the Age of Discovery. Suggested donation for Renaissance Mix afternoons is $8. I’ll see you there!
While you are in the Browne’s Addition neighborhood, it is worth your time to take a walking tour and see some of the incredible historic houses that Spokane’s oldest neighborhood is known for. The MAC has just released a Browne’s Addition walking tour e-book that works on Apple and Android smartphones, portable media players, and tablet computers. The route takes about an hour to walk. The tour e-book includes photos, architectural descriptions, and brief stories of fifty-four properties. This great new guide is free! Just download it and you will be on your way.