City gate, Prato

Prato was a city that long attracted Leonardo’s interest and for more than one reason. To begin with, it constituted the fulcrum of his project to divert the Arno River. His plan involved the construction of a navigable canal that would pass through the town itself. Furthermore, Leonardo had many friends in Prato, among them Filippino Lippi. Finally, the town was adorned with significant works by two important artists whom Leonardo admired – Donatello and Sangallo.