Overshadowed : Leonardo da Vinci and Bernardino Luini
Author : David Alan Brown
Publisher: Thames and Hudson
Number of pages: 96
This volume examines a selection of paintings from the 1520s by Italian Renaissance painter Bernardino Luini (c. 1480/85-1532) that were highly influenced by Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519), endeavoring to reconceive Luini's much-criticized lack of originality vis-à-vis the older master.
Luini's critics, the book argues, fail to consider the function of his paintings as devotional images for the general public. Not only did Luini simplify and clarify da Vinci's motifs--rendering them accessible to uneducated viewers--but he also helped set a new standard for the depiction of sacred subjects, drawing inspiration from other artists such as Andrea Solario.
While little is known about the public's perception of religious art during this period, the compositions of Luini's paintings provide clues--as detectable in the way he foregrounds figures and frames their interactions with one another and the beholder.