Leonardo Da Vinci Wax Model of Horse and Rider as Shown in the Book Leonardo Da Vinci, Scientist, Inventor, Artist

The Horse and Rider story began in 1985, when four businessmen traveled to Switzerland. During their visit, they were introduced to a centuries old sculpture languishing in a vault. Hand-carved from beeswax, the piece measured approximately 9” long, 9 3/4 “high, and 3 1/2” wide, depicting a warhorse and its distinguished rider… and was purported to be by Renaissance Master, Leonardo Da Vinci.

Dr. Carlo Pedretti

Intrigued, the men contacted Dr. Carlo Pedretti, the world’s authority on the life and works of Leonardo Da Vinci. In addition to his status as Professor Emeritus of Art History and Italian Studies on Leonardo Da Vinci at UCLA, Dr. Pedretti has written over 50 books and more than 700 scholarly articles and essays on the Master. On July 10th, 1985, following a thorough examination of the wax, Dr. Pedretti stated, in a letter on UCLA stationary: “…this wax model is by Leonardo himself.”

Portrait of Charles d’ Amboise from the Louvre Museum that Dr. Pedretti suggests is the Rider on the Leonardo Wax Model of Horse and Rider Black and White Picture Comparison of Charles d’ Amboise and the Riders Head on the Wax Model

Dubbing the work Horse and Rider, Dr. Pedretti stated that the sculpture was “possibly an equestrian portrait of Charles d’Amboise.” As the French Governor of Milan,(1503-1511) Charles d’Amboise befriended Leonardo upon his arrival in Milan in 1508, and quickly became one of his greatest patrons. The resemblance between the sculpted rider and Andrea Solario’s portrait of Charles d’Amboise, housed in the Louvre Museum, and of the same period, is remarkable.

Mold made in 1985 directly  from Leonardo Da Vinci Wax Model of Horse and RiderInside View of Mold from Leonardo Da Vinci Wax Model of Horse and Rider – The Mold was used to pull the Wax to cast the original bronze sculpture of <strong>Horse and Rider</strong> ” src=”×150.jpg” height=”150″ /></a></p>
<p>Over the centuries, the sculpture had sustained damage to the arms of the rider and the legs of both rider and horse.  It was decided to make a mold of the delicate wax statuette, in order to preserve and record its then current condition.  At the time the group intended to make bronze sculptures from the mold and market a limited edition of bronze sculptures, exactly as Leonardo had envisioned, but never completed. For reasons unknown the businessmen, like Leonardo, did not follow through with the plan to complete Horse and Rider in Bronze.  Today, the original Leonardo da Vinci wax sculpture is currently believed to be in a private collection in London.</p>
<p><a href=Richard A Lewis, Owner of  Leonardo Da Vinci Equestrian LLC, Owner and Publisher of Horse and Rider

At this part of the story, allow me to introduce myself. My name is Richard A. Lewis. I was a personal friend with one of the businessmen. He shared with me the existence of the mold made from the wax sculpture. I was so fascinated with the story that in 1987, I purchased the mold and all pertinent documents pertaining to it. Because I was involved in other business activities, the mold and the story sat dormant for twenty-five years.

In January 2012, I had the privilege of meeting Dr. Carlo Pedretti. During the meeting, he presented several books and publications documenting “Horse and Rider”. These sources included the definitive catalogue of Leonardo da Vinci’s artwork, known as the Queen’s Collection, owned by Queen Elizabeth and housed at Windsor Castle in England. Leonardo da Vinci: Scientist, Inventor, Artist by Otto Letze and Thomas Buchsteiner was yet another book that Dr. Pedretti shared with me. The last public viewing of the “wax horse’ was a Da Vinci exposition in Malmo, Sweden in 1995.

Pictures of Leonardo Da Vinci Wax Model of Horse and Rider from the Queens Book Cover Page of The Drawings of Leonardo Da Vinci Collection of Her Majesty The Queen (The Queens Book) Leonardo Da Vinci Wax Model of Horse and Rider as Shown in the Book Leonardo Da Vinci, Scientist, Inventor, Artist Cover of the Book, Leonardo Da Vinci, Scientist, Inventor, artist by Otto Letze and Thomas Buchsteiner

Between January 2012 and June 2012, a team of expert artists, craftsman and engineers, produced a wax sculpture from the original mold, and using the “lost wax” process, cast the original Horse and Rider bronze sculpture.

Richard Lewis with Dr. and Mrs. Pedretti, January 14, 2012 – Photograph by Mike Koligman.  Bronze Sculpture Cast from the Mold Made Directly from the Leonardo Da Vinci Wax Model of Horse and Rider

I am now ready to present the magnificent “Horse and Rider” to the world.

Richard A. Lewis
Leonardo Da Vinci Equestrian LLC
Owner and Publisher