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The Sydney J. Freedberg Lecture on Italian Art 1999: Art and Science in the Drawings of Leonardo da Vinci

James S. Ackerman, professor emeritus of the history of art and architecture, Harvard University Leonardo da Vinci was the only artist of his time to have an intense interest in science. Evident in his sketchbooks, this interest led to his detailed biology and nature studies. In this podcast recorded on November 14, 1999, as part of the Sydney J. Freedberg Lecture on Italian Art series, Professor James S. Ackerman discusses how Leonardo occupied himself by expressing the forces of nature, not just the experience of nature. Leonardo established art as a communication of visual experience and as a means to discover both nature and invention. As Leonardo said, "Painting compels the mind of the painter to transform itself to the very mind of nature—to become an interpreter between nature and art."