Search results

Start typing

This exhibition is in the past. View our current exhibitions.

Florence, 1500 – 1506/8

After the fall of his patron Ludovico Sforza in Milan, Leonardo returned to Florence. He tried to re-establish himself there as a painter but was reported to be ‘very impatient with the brush’, and in 1502 he left Florence to work as a military surveyor to Cesare Borgia, commander of the Papal army.

Leonardo was back in the city the following spring, when the Florentine government commissioned him to paint a huge mural, the Battle of Anghiari. He worked on that painting for the next three years, while also making maps and beginning other paintings, including Mona Lisa and Leda and the Swan.

In 1506 the French occupiers of Milan requested Leonardo’s return to the city, and for two years he travelled repeatedly between Florence and Milan. This was an unsettled period artistically, and Leonardo threw himself into the study of subjects such as anatomy and botany, heralding his greatest scientific achievements over the next five years.

The income from your ticket contributes directly to The Royal Collection Trust, a registered charity. The aims of The Royal Collection Trust are the care and conservation of the Royal Collection, and the promotion of access and enjoyment through exhibitions, publications, loans and educational activities.