One of the most accomplished human beings who ever lived, Leonardo remains the quintessential Renaissance genius. Creator of the world's most famous painting, this scientist, artist, philosopher, inventor, builder, and mechanic epitomized the great flowering of human consciousness that marks his era. And yet, so wide-ranging and prolific were his interests that he brought hardly any major undertaking to a final end.
In his thousands of notes and sketches, Leonardo would not only demonstrate his graphic genius but also anticipate some of the great discoveries and inventions that would follow him, from key points in anatomy - such as the principles behind blood circulation - through to plans for armoured military vehicles, planes, helicopters and submarines. Leonardo also advanced numerous artistic techniques, achieving a complex psychology in such paintings as The Last Supper and the enigmatic La Gioconda, or Mona Lisa, which continue to mesmerize visitors from around the world to this day.