Episode 47 Leonardo!
one day in eighteen, seventy, six and Bath County Kentucky meet fell from the sky. Meet meet me. Yes meet, and in twenty nineteen, we were weird enough to write a book about it. Not just any book because we can't do anything normal. What we decided to do is pretend that the only surviving piece of meat in the world which really doesn't this. Yeah, we made him the narrator of our store. I can't wait to share it with you. It is called the shower. It is available. Now, as we speak is me got enough you're talking right now. As you listen, and as I speak, it is available. Now you can go to our website the past curious dot com or the publisher's website early works dot com for more information. On needs. So you're telling me that they made a Mona Lisa entirely out of chewed bubblegum. Do you think it was the same person who the bubblegum? It's gross. Anyway. Welcome to the show. My name is Mick Sullivan, and this is the past and the curious. This episode is about Davinci and about a painting the DAVINCI painted. But another man stole. It's a fun show I'm really excited about it i. have some thank Yous I need to thank Lonnie powers from book power for kids. She played the role of a kind of F. trinket sort of character. If you've ever seen the hunger games and I'm also excited to welcome back at much request. I get a lot of requests to bring back Dr the Palaiseau professor. But I can't have him on very often because it's kind of hard to do. You know what I'm saying but he's here today if you don't know what Pailin domes mean well, I'll tell you before we get started. Anyway let's start the for story. To. The Renaissance, Oh Italy, how you have suffered through the darkness of the Middle Ages, and now here we are standing on the cusp of a new era where we will turn our minds to nature. Humans, and the world striving to understand how it all works, congratulations to us all. We've made it. This speech is not even remotely real though it was very well delivered. Thank you very much money, but it is easy to mistake this sentiment as something that people at the time might have actually felt. Most likely no one at the time realized that a new era, the renaissance had begun in the year fourteen hundred it's not like a giant switch flipped flooding the so called dark, ages with the bright light of the renaissance like US folks were just living their lives day to day. Most people will probably never even realized that the world was changing in such tremendous ways. It took historians to do that our story centers around Italy which in the early eighteen hundreds became the center of the renaissant. which radiated to the world the term renaissance refers to a time period that brought a new focus on philosophy and the arts sciences, understanding of the world and the mathematics behind it, and also a humans place in it. All like all other times it was also a period filled with wars and conflict because you know people right but it was a period of great advancement and achievement. Some of the greatest the world has ever known. The most famous and probably most important figure from this time and place was a left handed polymath who is unmarried and socially mismatched parents didn't even pay for him to be educated. Luckily for him and for the rest of us, he was really smart and he worked hard to keep getting smarter. No one could argue about his genius, His name was Leonardo Da Vinci. As. A young boy without the means for an Education Leonardo took advantage of the apprentice system in Italy, his natural ability with art and strong grasp of geometry and math, which she somehow learned without ever actually going to school earned him a spot as an apprentice to an artist in Florence named Ferruccio. Broke Yo is a leading painter and sculptor an his workshop near the Arno River Leonardo rose from sweeping the floors and mixing paints to working side by side with his master. It was not uncommon for an apprentice to handle much of the actual painting in a workshop and Leonardo was no different much of the painted onto canvases signed by Rubio was actually put there by Leonardo in fourteen seventy two at only twenty years of age Davinci officially became a master himself. This meant he could accept commissions for his own work which he did this how you made money. But he also found patronage or support from powerful political leaders. He moved to Milan to work under the Duke of Milan a man named sports. He originally got sports as attention by making him a lute from a horse go and silver. Which is pretty Nedal for being honest. This horse had instrument must have worked because sports decided to pay him a bunch of money. For Seventeen years in Milan, he made statues designed architectural features, created models and drawings. The even painted the masterpiece the last supper on the wall of the Monastery of Santa Maria. Della GRADS E. In addition to all of this, he was learning about the anatomy of living creatures, including people. Of course, do this he had to dissect cadavers or dead bodies? And to get these, he had to dig them up when no one was looking. Just pretty gross, but people learned a lot from his willingness to get his hands dirty. Honestly he was kind of a Rockstar people wanted to hire him for everything and he honestly left a lot of jobs unfinished because more. We're always coming his way. But when he did finish something, people would rush to see it and flocks like we might do for a concert or a Broadway show today. As. If this wasn't enough he was also designing some of the most incredible technology. The world has ever seen. Remember he was a polymath an expert at many thanks. Most of his designs were never actually built like a helicopter and a tank, a diving suit and a super mega gigantic crossbow. These just existed as detailed drawings in his many notebooks filled with a never ending flow of ideas. Some of his inventions did become real but either way he regularly impressed people with the constant highly detailed ideas that just seem to come to him and dreams but all of the military conflict and strife in Italy eventually changed his life. His rich princely friends Sforza. The Duke of Milan was overthrown. Fellows Sports. Your days are over. Over If it wasn't clear when this happened, Davinci had to ease on down the road looking for a new home phone. Now sorry that didn't really work either nice try though this time he wound up in Venice here in fifteen o two, he got to know, Cesar Borja. The borjas were one of the most powerful families actually probably the most powerful family Italy and not just because they're brother was the pope. They were good people to have as friends to say the least and Davinci was valuable to them for many reasons. Not, the least of which being his abilities with a weapon design. But DAVINCI like war, and he looked for ways to avoid it a situation arose involving the Arno River the Arno ran from Florence through Pisa and then to the sea. Rivers with the lifeblood of cities they allowed people to trade with everyone else along the river easily, but they also met access to the sea and ocean and this meant trade with the world, which was very important for a city like Florence. Unfortunately, pizza was in the way they had recently revolted against Florence which cramp the style of the powerful people there who were counting on open trade routes things headed for the ocean had to get through a I. This was a problem and traditional warfare had gone nowhere for decades and so Davinci. Came up with what he thought was a great. IDEA. You're going to do what? Of. River. Like Moo Cow. I'm going to move that I'm going to change the direction of that river. Moved me a rib bird. Oh, I see now is it still going to be a river though you're not going to like build a dam just flood the forest of would to make it a lake filled with timber right? Do you mean a Timberlake? No. I'm going to change the course of this river with my bare hands or. Actually. The hand of a bunch of laborers. Davinci and another famous man named Machiavelli came up with a plan to dig a new channel through the dry earth which the river would follow instead. They would divert the river so far that the path would travel all the way around Pisa leaving it high and dry. The original river path would be nothing more than a muddy trickle. There would be no water to sustain farms and people no water to trade on and most importantly no way to hold up. Lawrence's plans. They thought it was foolproof. Were they right. They were worse than right. They were wrong. Even a genius left-handed Italian polymath as a few failures. So as soon he left the service of the BORJAS and settled back in his native Florence where he began work in fifteen o three on what would one day become the most famous painting in the world. People. Still argue about it today and there certainly some mystery around it. But most believe it was a commission from a silk merchant named Francesco they'll gio condo the merchant Davinci to paint a portrait of his wife Lisa. By fifteen seven Davinci had yet finish it and even when he did though many believe it remains unfinished still. He never gave it to Francesco. Instead as Da Vinci continued to move around. Italy. He took the painting we know as the Mona Lisa with him. Did he do this because he had grown too attached to it. Because he wasn't satisfied with it and plan to work on it further. We just don't know, but we do know that he took it with him to France. When King Francois, I invited him to live and work there under his patronage. It was in Da Vinci possession when he died in fifteen nineteen, which was a full sixteen years after he was hired to paint. Lisa. Deljo condo. The painting was purchased from Davinci's assistant by that same French king who as an art loving royal had quite a collection of paintings. For years, he hung on the wall of one of his smaller royal homes of which he had several. Is reason to believe he hung it in the bathroom? Beatrice from Philadelphia, you have thirty seconds to tell us something. Awesome. I've already heard it and I know that at awesome. So why don't you tell the rest of the people? Beatrice in my here's Murray Marie Curie was born in Warsaw Poland on November seventh eighteen, sixty seven. She studied at the university and then she began her scientific studies and France. Then she married a man named here carry together they want to know vote prices Savvy Murray died from radiation poison but I know lifetime discovered two new radioactive elements radium and polonium and became the only woman to win two Nobel Prizes. Thank you so much that was awesome. Marie Curie is a fascinating person. I really appreciate you sending that, and if you have a submission for you have thirty seconds, there are instructions on our website. Oh, you really need is a voice recorder on a phone diseases that can't wait to hear what you said. You know I wonder if Davinci ever invented a machine that could tell me what time it is. Birth time. A. All right. Here we go. It's a quiz about Leonardo Da Vinci in the renaissance. So here we go win Napoleon's troops were in Milan in the early eighteen hundreds. What did they do with the giant FRESCO? We know as the last supper, it's multiple choice. Did they eat breakfast under it? Try to paint copies or use it for target practice. If you said they used it as target practice. You are correct though the Mona Lisa belonged to Napoleon at the time and reportedly traveled with him to hang in his commander's tent. His men weren't as interested in Renaissance Art. They used the last supper for target practice and years. Later, it had to be restored due to the damage. Amazingly, it survived the bombings during World War Two. Question number. Two. Two years before Leonardo. Davinci was born Yohannes Gutenberg invented something that would change the world some say it was the most important invention of all time. What was it? It. Was the printing press. Finally, books and pamphlets could be reproduced quickly so that they could be available to everyone before that books had only been available at libraries or universities most were written or copied by hand, which meant that they were very difficult to get your hands on after the printing press was invented more and more people learn to read which allowed them to be exposed to new ideas and ways of thinking, and it was one of the most important aspects of the renaissance. Okay Question Number Three Leonardo Da Vinci wasn't the only great Italian renaissance painter and he wasn't the only one who shared a name with an injury turtle. which other painter slash Ninja turtle namesake was the creator of the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. Wasn't Raphael and it wasn't Donatello Michelangelo Michelangelo and Leonardo were rivals in real life. So they probably didn't share any pizza. The real. Michelangelo. Spent four years painting the incredible frescoes on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. By the end I, BET, his arms were pretty tight. Maybe, you've seen this before, and if you haven't, that's totally cool. It's very easy to imagine in a gallery of Fine Art Museum. Someone is set up with their Easel, our sketch pad painting drawing stopping regularly to stare deep into the detail of a masterpiece on the wall. Masterpieces are just that masterpieces. They are marvels of detail technique filled with inspiration, and for many they are a unique way to learn to paint. Nothing beats at something in person up close and personal with a critical eye. These art gallery art makers are learning from the masters even if the masters have been dead for centuries. This is precisely what Louis Baru had in mind when he walked into the Louvre on a Tuesday in nineteen eleven. No, he wasn't hoping to take lessons from some Zombie painters. He was going to spend the morning with the painting created and sort of May be finished by Leonardo. Da Vinci four hundred years before in nineteen eleven the Mona Lisa was a pretty normal painting people new Davinci was important but this wasn't believed to be his most important work. For centuries, it had been out of public eye and when it was finally hung on the walls of the Louvre, it was about as exciting to folks as all of the other thousands of paintings that hung on the walls of the twenty six acre building. In the late eighteen hundreds of artists and critics began to realize or simply decided how great it was. But they were the snobby sort to most folks. It was just another portrait of a lady who? May Not be smiling Louis must have been one of these parolees up people because she's exactly who he was there to see. But when he got to the room where the painting usually hung, he found only four nails that once held it onto the wall. She was gone. Now. Yes. Excuse me I came here to see the Davinci in this room but it's gone what Davinci Yes I heard you what painting can't you find the Mona Lisa Dewa. The Mona Lisa. We have no painting called the Mona Lisa yes you do or you did it's The Da Vinci painting. It's a half length portrait of a woman who's Kinda smiling kind of nod and there's some interesting scenes over her shoulder in the distance and what did you call it the Mona Lisa we well, this is France and here we call that painting a Kanda Okay. Well, it appears Lajja. Kanda is missing from your wall. Any idea where it is Doa, Law Asia condo missing where is it? You mean the Mona Lisa's missing. This security guard checked with the photography department they had been working through the collection. So he assumed that the painting was temporarily removed so that photographs could be taken. Was He right He was worse than right. He was way he worse than right he was super duper Ding Dong Mega. Wrong. The Mona Lisa had been stolen. The HOOPLA that followed made the most famous painting in the world, and you could argue that the Mona Lisa never would have been as famous as it is now if Vincenzo Peruse. Hadn't initiated a worldwide search when he stole it on a Monday morning in nineteen eleven. Vincenzo had worked at the loop often on as a contractor for years. In fact, the museum had chosen one hundred paintings including the Mona Lisa. To put behind glass for extra protection and Vincenzo had installed. Many of those glass covers people hated the glass covers because sometimes the light would reflect on the glass and you couldn't actually see the painting that you came to see but instead the mirror image of your own face or someone else near you straining to see the Dang thing in the first place. The criticism didn't hurt Vinnie. He did most of his work on Mondays when the museum was closed. So No, one was around to complain to him. It's not like he could have done anything about it. Anyway. He was just a hired hand a regular guy who moved to France from Italy? Living in a tiny apartment and who is apparently nurturing a quiet. Yet, burning passion for returning Italy's important artworks back to Italy. He knew all too well that the move would be closed on Mondays. So one Sunday night instead of going home afterward, he and two accomplices snuck into a broom closet and spent the night with the cleaning supplies. When the morning came, they did their stretches put on work clothes and a smock with identify them as maintenance workers. Making a beeline for Lisa, they pulled her off of the wall and quickly headed for the door. Stairwell. They removed the centuries old frame and carelessly tossed it aside. DAVINCI painted the Mona Lisa on wood. So it was impossible to roll up which is a good thing for the art world. So vinnie hid the inflexible rectangle under his smock the only surprise person he ran into must have been incredibly lacking in the Observation Department or else didn't care because the painting is two and a half feet tall and nearly two feet wide there is no wave and Shinzo didn't look suspicious especially for someone leaving an art museum that Dude didn't say a word. It's hard to know what mention does plan was later he said he didn't really even have one other than to return the painting Davinci's native country Italy. But many believed that he and the others wanted to either sell it. Or have someone create copies and then pass those off as the original to several unwitting and lawless collectors who were okay with having stolen art in their collections. Apparently those people exist and that's totally lame. It took officials at the museum twenty six hours to figure out that the painting was gone and when they did they searched high and low. It was nowhere in the building. Of course, there were suspects. Other people had stolen things from them in the past and they checked with them. But none of those investigations uncovered the slightest shred of evidence on the winner about of the Mona Lisa. Police even brought the famous painter. Pablo Picasso in for questioning. The accusations made him blue for a period but they explained that they had to look at the crime from all possible angles at what's which he of course understood. Once the international press learned about the highest. The story was everywhere the New York. Times was astounded. Someone could walk out of a museum in the heart of a bustling city with a large renaissance portrait and the more people heard about it. The more the painting was planted in their imagination not many people in North or South. America had seen the Mona Lisa. Most Europeans hadn't even seen it but the case and the amount of money tied to the painting was in every newspaper around the globe. So now everyone knew about the Mona Lisa. All of this attention made it really difficult for Vincenzo to do anything with the pilfered painting. So he stuck it inside a trunk in his tiny apartment. Right next to the stove. Put some socks and underwear on top of it, and there it stayed for a couple of years to the world. It was just gone and the authorities slowly began to lose hope. Until one day, an art dealer in Florence got a letter from someone who claimed to have the Mona Lisa. This person wanted to sell it and to see that it would wind up back in Italy. Yes. Sure. Okay. Buddy. He probably wrote back I'm going to need to see it before I can give you a price. The Art dealer assumed that the letter came from someone who actually just had a copy of the DAVINCI. But Ju just in case he called the curator at the nearby Art Museum. Vincenzo Robak. Sure. Come on up to Paris. I'll show you the painting I, keep it with my underwear. nope. Coming up there to see your underwear, you come on down here and you can bring Lisa. Then, he was hoping for that cash payment. So he brought the painting and the art dealer brought his curators friend. And the police. Vincenzo was arrested and for his crime of stealing what became the most being this painting in the world he served. Seven months in prison. You later served in the Italian army during World War One and died in relative obscurity. The Mona. Lisa on the other hand was displayed in Italy to enormous crowds many of whom had probably never even heard of it until the heist. It returned to Paris on the penultimate day of nineteen thirteen, and since then it has been the most popular painting balloon. which is arguably the finest. Museum in the world. Okay you all be cool because it's time for Dr. Awkward. Now, here's the thing about Dr Awkward. Everything he says is a pal android that means it is spelt the exact same way forward as it is backwards. It's pretty crazy I don't understand why he does that. Anyway. Here goes nothing. It's stuck up words the Landreau broke. It's doctor. Pal Gross. It's Dr Awkward. Dr. Rock. Solid Room. Dr Awkward It's great to have you back. Is it. It is. Well I know that everyone has missed you I get requests to have you on all the time. But you have to understand that I can only have you on every. So often for a number of reasons, seven Eve's now it's been way more than seven Eve since you were last here. Hey, anyway, you probably noticed that security has changed around the studio. You'll need to wear this name tag. You're here shall I write Dr Awkward on it for you? Know it's Abe Sebastian. is that right I never knew your full name eight Sebastian Awkward is that what you would like me to call you name now one man. Yes. I'm naming a one man and that man is you. So what should I write on your name tag? Dr Awkward. Yeah. That was my original suggestion. Here you go. Oh No, it doesn't seem to be very sticky. I could get some tape so it'll stay on your jacket. No, tie it on. we'll get a hole punch and then some string and their we kill. Now we brought you on this episode because I understand that you actually witnessed an art heist and this is very exciting to me. I heard some of the details and it seems like you are in the restroom when the heist began, where was the restroom as I P I c Pisa. Oh Pisa Italy very fancy. Yes. There's a lot of great art in that city. Though it's alarming that someone tried to steal some especially from a bathroom. So while you were. In. His bathroom you noticed someone stealing some art is that how it went down elite tile tiles like mosaic not sounds interesting. What was pictured on the tile eve as in Adam and Eve wo say. Wonder what Adam said to her when they first met like when they saw each other for the first time Madam in. Eden I'm Adam. Maybe. Maybe you're right. Yeah. Anyway. What did you do when you saw this art being stolen put Elliott's toilet up. Like a portable toilet, you're borrowing from someone named Elliot you put it away. Okay. Well, did you get a good look at thief mom it was your mom. I can't imagine what was going through your head Amy Must I ju Jitsu Ma? Whose amy more importantly did you Jujitsu? Your mom mom is just as selfless as I am. Well, it doesn't sound very selfless to steal a mosaic of Eve from a bathroom and pizza. Art Name no time emit but one mantra one mantra did you resolve the situation by saying something marge let send a sadness telegram. So your mom is marge and her sadness was reason that she stole this eve from the bathroom and you've got her to confront her sadness by writing someone telegram. What did it say? Mister Owl met my metal work from. That's at Well I. Don't think this is going to work for me won't it? No. Well I was hoping for more action acrobats stab ORCA nurses run our talking stop murder not tonsured rum pots. Tino dump mud on it. Yeah. That's the stuff. Slap a ham on Omaha House. All right. That's enough. Thanks. I think we can unquestionably call this your most successful visit to the show ever. But that's not saying much. Is it? Awkward. It's Dr. off. Salad. Well for those of you who like Dr Awkward you're welcome for those of you who hoped you'd never hear it again. Sorry I can't do very often though so you know. I have a lot of Patriot people to thank again this month I, appreciate it so much you help me keep going and doing the show. It means a lot. So if anyone else is interested there are links to our patron count on our website the passengers dot com. To simple latest support the show. Without. Further Ado. I need to think. Abraham. Had a nice message from your mom. Vicky Abraham Thank you Abraham. I also need to think Luka had a nice message from your mom Kate and I'm so glad that you are out there. Luca Luca. Thank you. Same Story Really Cool Dad named Phil probably a pretty cool probably cooler actually kid if we're going to be honest right Arthur Arthur thank you very much. Glad you're out there with those ears listening and Moses in a story New York hello. Moses. Thank you much sir. And last but not least will actually ultimate but not. Ultimate. Song after this anyway. There's one more group of kids that I mean I think Bingham and Emma brother and sister. Thank you so much. Bingham, and Emma. So happy to know that you are out there. And last but not least now using that term correctly or appropriately at least for the situation I have a song for an old friend named Chris and. I'M GONNA send it out to her. This is the past and the curious. My name is maxine. You're listening enjoy this little ditty and I'll talk to you in the future next month. This Chris Chris Chris Chris Chris. Is Grizzlies. Also Chris. Chris Chris. I remember on. And you're. Like. Those white shirt. Goose. That was so long. She. Chris Chris Chris Chris Christie. Green. To Thanks everybody stay well.