On May 2, 1519, the great Italian Renaissance artist, inventor and philosopher Leonardo da Vinci died in France at the age of 67. He had moved there in 1516 under the sponsorship of King Francis I, who invited him to come reside in the Loire Valley at the Château du Clos Lucé. The ornate mansion lies on the grounds of the Château d’Amboise, where the King himself resided. Da Vinci would spend the final three years of life there, devoting much of his energies to exploring engineering and architectural innovations. It has even been theorised that he contributed to the final designs of the Chateau de Chambord, one of the most beautiful and elaborate castles in the Loire Valley!
500th Anniversary of Leonardo da Vinci’s Death in France
..Private Tours & Events
Château clos de lucé: A Fresh Permanent Exhibit in 2020
In addition, the Chateau plans to re-open a freshly curated permanent exhibit in 2020 dedicated to the legacy of Leonardo, featuring a comparative look at the artist’s Milanese period (1507-1513) and his French one (1516-1519). It will explore the artist’s relationships with three French Kings: Charles III, Louis XII and Francis I, and show how these bonds helped fuel a Renaissance in art and architecture that would profoundly shape Italian, French, and European history.
The collections have also been recently augmented with a few remarkable new pieces, including:
- A breathtaking copy of the Mona Lisa (1654) by Ambroise Dubois, who was the official painter for king Henry IV
- A replica of Donatello’s David (1430 – 1432), a bronze statue considered to be one of the period’s finest
- A mechanical Lion that was produced following the designs of Leonardo, created by a Venetian master
If you’re drawn to the Loire Valley and want to include an exploration of Leonardo’s local legacy as part of a unique private tour in the area, we’re at your service. Combine it with a luxury Loire wine tour, private cruise on the Loire river, or any number of other activities.
Ready for your own bespoke & ultra-exclusive Culture tour?
There are so many more wonderful places to explore in France, get in touch with us to start building one straight away.
Your personally tailored and entirely private tour will include an exclusive look at some of the most closely-guarded secrets of French culture