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Ideal male heads

Two standard male types recur repeatedly in Leonardo’s drawings and paintings – an adolescent with delicate, refined features, and an older man with aquiline nose, prominent chin and beetling brow. In the last decade of his life Leonardo produced a number of independent drawings of such heads, exercises in form and draughtsmanship simply for his own satisfaction.

Leonardo da Vinci (Vinci 1452-Amboise 1519)

The head of a youth in profile

Leonardo da Vinci (Vinci 1452-Amboise 1519)

The head of a youth in profile

Leonardo da Vinci (Vinci 1452-Amboise 1519)

The head of a bearded man in profile

Leonardo da Vinci (Vinci 1452-Amboise 1519)

The bust of a man in profile

Leonardo da Vinci (Vinci 1452-Amboise 1519)

The bust of a man, and the head of a lion

Leonardo da Vinci (Vinci 1452-Amboise 1519)

The head of an old bearded man in profile