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Imagining the future. Leonardo da Vinci: in the mind of an Italian genius

June 21 @ 9:30 am - August 20 @ 5:00 pm EDT


12 Leonardo da Vinci drawings never seen in the US are coming to the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library in Washington, DC.

Confindustria – the largest business association representing manufacturing and service companies in Italy – under the curatorship of the director of the Pinacoteca Ambrosiana Monsignor Alberto Rocca, and together with Intesa Sanpaolo, ITA Airways, 24 ORE Cultura, Dolce&Gabbana, Dompé, Pirelli and Trenitalia, and the DC Public Library – has chosen to bring to America the symbol of the Italian genius: Leonardo da Vinci, father anticipator of innovations in the fields of art, knowledge, science, and research.

On Wednesday, June 21, the exhibition Imagining the future. Leonardo da Vinci: in the mind of an Italian genius will open to the public at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library in downtown Washington, DC. Visitors will have the rare opportunity to view 12 original da Vinci’s sketches and notes, not seen in the United States until now.

The Leonardo da Vinci exhibit is the first monographic one in the US dedicated to this universal genius. It provides an intimate look at one of history’s most brilliant thinkers. Visitors will gain a deeper understanding of the origins of technologies we often take for granted and appreciate the remarkable mind that anticipated them centuries ago.

Alongside the exhibit, the Library is hosting “Leonardo’s Lab,” offering visitors of all ages the opportunity to participate in activities like constructing structures with wooden slats, exploring aerodynamics with homemade ‘ornithopters,’ and testing their skills at reverse writing on mounted chalkboards.

Imagining the Future will be open during regular Library hours and is free to the public. The exhibit closes on August 20, 2023. Due to the high level of interest in Imagining the Future, visitors may encounter a wait to enter the exhibit.

About the Collection
The 12 original drawings, currently housed at Biblioteca Ambrosiana in Milan, Italy, are part of the Codex Atlanticus, a collection of 1119 pages, containing da Vinci’s notes, drawings, and diagrams from 1478 to 1519,, research on mathematics, astronomy and optics, philosophical meditations and fables, hydraulic pumps and various tools for lifting water, and even intriguing devices for mechanical and gliding flight.


June 21 @ 9:30 am EDT
August 20 @ 5:00 pm EDT
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Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library
901 G St NW
Washington, DC 20001 United States
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