Montelupo is represented by Leonardo in the famous view of the Windsor Castle Collection RL 12685. At the confluence of the Pesa with the Arno, Leonardo depicted the hill of Montelupo with an upper part, the castle, and a lower part, also equipped with fortifications. In 1336, the village of Montelupo was surrounded by walls, and this was the form in which Leonardo represented it, in the early 16th century. In Leonardo’s map, the Via Pisana, coming out of the gate on the Pesa, can be seen quite clearly, heading, in a straight line, toward Pontorme and Empoli.
The ceramics museum is today the center of collection and study of the most famous Renaissance majolica of the Florentine area and throughout the Mediterranean basin. At the time of Leonardo, the furnaces of Montelupo had surpassed those of Bacchereto, the oldest production center, which Leonardo knew well, because the family of his paternal grandmother still lived in Bacchereto, making their fortune by means of production of small jugs. The left bank of the Arno, with the Fibbiana clays that Leonardo also observed, provided the raw material for the productions that made Montelupo famous.