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Leonardo da Vinci (Vinci 1452-Amboise 1519)

Studies of a horse c.1490

Metalpoint on pale buff prepared paper | 19.9 x 28.5 cm (sheet of paper) | RCIN 912317

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A full-length drawing of a standing horse, facing the viewer; a study of the hind-quarters of a horse, with its back to the spectator; a full-length horse, in profile to the right, turned slightly away from the spectator; a slight sketch of a horse, and a small drawing of horse walking to the left in profile.

In the years around 1490 Leonardo made many studies of horses, in preparation for a projected equestrian monument to Francesco Sforza, the former Duke of Milan. Though Leonardo completed a huge clay model for the monument, he was prevented from casting it in bronze, and the model was destroyed by invading French forces in 1499.