Bramante Sacristy and Leonardo Codex Atlanticus

See the world's largest collection of works on paper by Leonardo da Vinci, encompassing 40 years of the master's creative life.


Bramante's Monumental Sacristy
Basilica di Santa Maria delle Grazie, entrance from Via Caradosso 1, Milan

From Tuesday to Sunday, from 8:30 am to 7 pm.

Visit duration: about 20 minutes


Bramante Sacristy Audio Guide

An audio guide is available to make the most of your visit.

Device: smartphone with NFC tag operation. The explanation is automatically activated when the phone is brought close, and you can choose to listen to all or a part of it, or to read the comment instead of listening to it.

Duration: about 40 minutes

Languages: English or Italian



  • General introduction
  • Commentary about the interior of the Sacristy
  • Commentaries (read only) about the Atlantic Code pieces on display at the time of the visit

Bramante's Monumental Sacristy

Milan - Symbol of the Renaissance
Fifteenth century Milan became the European capital of art and culture thanks to the Visconti and Sforza families, and to Ludovico il Moro. Exceptional artists such as Bramante and Leonardo da Vinci visited Milan, which became the heart of Renaissance art.

Santa Maria delle Grazie and the Bramante's Sacristy
The church of Santa Maria delle Grazie was built from 1465 to 1482 by Guiniforte Solari. Starting in 1490 Ludovico il Moro ordered important architectural changes. He commissioned Bramante with building the new tribune, and Leonardo da Vinci with painting The Last Supper. Bramante enlarged the church with a great Renaissance tribune, adding the cloister and the new sacristy.

The cloister is formed by lateral arches that rest on columns with Renaissance capitals.The Sacristy is characterized by rigorous geometric design, complete with cornice moldings, frames, and tondi (round paintings). Beautiful cabinets cover the four walls. These were initially inlaid and then completed with paintings.

A forgotten Meeting: Bramante and Leonardo in Milan
The Veneranda Biblioteca Ambrosiana is proposing a special exhibition commemorating this almost forgotten meeting. The library does so with three goals in mind: to celebrate beauty, to recover a historic memory, and to reveal unknown masterpieces to the public.

The Veneranda Biblioteca Ambrosiana and the Fondazione Cardinale Federico Borromeo, together with the Dominican Friars of Santa Maria delle Grazie, are exhibiting some pages of the Codex Atlanticus by Leonardo in the monumental and evocative Sacristy of Santa Maria delle Grazie by Bramante.

You are not only invited to visit Leonardo da Vinci's masterpiece The Last Supper, but also to admire the drawings by the master and to experience the great collection of paintings and books of the Ambrosiana Library.

The Codex Atlanticus. Air, Water, Earth and Fire. History in Movement.
The Codex Atlanticus it is the largest and most breathtaking collection of papers by Leonardo da Vinci. The name comes from its impressive size, typical for an Atlas (650 x 440 mm). At the end of the 16th century, the sculptor Pompeo Leoni put the more than 1,700 texts and drawings by the master together in a large single volume of 402 pages. It was donated to the Biblioteca Ambrosiana together with 11 other manuscripts in 1637. Confiscated by Napoleon and taken to Paris, the Codex Atlanticus was later returned to its original home never to leave it again.

The collected material covers the whole intellectual life of Leonardo, spanning over 40 years, from 1478 to 1519.

Represented here are:

  • Leonardo's contributions to mechanics, mathematics, history, botany, geography, physics, chemistry and architecture
  • The master's drawings of war devices, underwater and flying machines, tools, architecture and urban design projects
  • Theoretical and technical principles of painting, sculpture, optics and perspective
  • Fables, tales and philosophic meditations

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