May 4, 2012
Today marks the start of a special exhibition that will run through Oct. 7, 2012, at The Queen's Gallery in Buckingham Palace. Titled Leonardo da Vinci: Anatomist, it is the largest ever exhibition of the famous Renaissance man's anatomical drawings. And just in time for the show's inauguration, a unique iPad app honoring Leonardo the anatomist has been released by acclaimed publisher Touch Press. Aptly called Leonardo da Vinci: Anatomy, the new app is easily one of the most carefully considered creations to appear in the App Store. Like Touch Press' other offerings, including The Waste Land and Barefoot World Atlas, the app is a great example of how the interactivity of the iPad can be channeled for something worthwhile. The app contains all 268 of Leonardo's anatomical drawings, which have been entrusted to the Royal Collection since the late 1600s. They are presented at high resolution and are especially engaging in the new iPad's Retina display. You can pinch to zoom on any part of a drawing and use a virtual loupe to read Leonardo's distinctive mirror writing in the original Italian. To translate the mirror writing into typeset English, simply use the app's special swipe gesture. If you can't see the video embedded above, please click here. Anatomical models rendered in 3D are also included in the app, as are interviews with experts who know best about Leonardo the anatomist. One such expert is Martin Clayton, Senior Curator of Prints and Drawings at the Royal Collection. Aside from introducing the app in the trailer above, he is also the writer of the app's 11 explanatory chapters. Leonardo da Vinci: Anatomy is available now in the App Store for $13.99. Forget "The Da Vinci Code." This here is the real deal.