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Eldorado

The 'earlier' Mona Lisa mystery

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Eldorado

"A painting of the Mona Lisa hangs above a fireplace in a London flat in the 1960s.

"Is this picture not only by Leonardo da Vinci, but also an earlier version of the world famous portrait that hangs in the Louvre Museum in Paris?

"Some people are convinced it is, and more than 50 years later, a bitter battle has erupted over both the ownership of the picture and the evidence about who painted it.

"The so-called "Earlier Mona Lisa" is at the heart of a mystery that involves Caribbean tax havens, Swiss bank vaults, a mysterious international consortium, and the Sherlock Holmes of the art world."

Full monty at the BBC: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-50046133

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BrooklynGuy
21 minutes ago, Eldorado said:

"A painting of the Mona Lisa hangs above a fireplace in a London flat in the 1960s.

"Is this picture not only by Leonardo da Vinci, but also an earlier version of the world famous portrait that hangs in the Louvre Museum in Paris?

"Some people are convinced it is, and more than 50 years later, a bitter battle has erupted over both the ownership of the picture and the evidence about who painted it.

"The so-called "Earlier Mona Lisa" is at the heart of a mystery that involves Caribbean tax havens, Swiss bank vaults, a mysterious international consortium, and the Sherlock Holmes of the art world."

Full monty at the BBC: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-50046133

Thanks for the link Eldorado, I was unaware that there maybe be a second rendering of the masterpiece by da Vinci.

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The Wistman

This painting has been jockeying around a long time.  Kemp is the Leonardo man par excellence, and I'd go with his opinion over most anybody else's, including Professor Isbout's.  Here's the takeaway line from Kemp:

Quote

"examination by infrared and other technical means, shows that it [the Louvre Mona Lisa] underwent an evolution, as all Leonardo's pictures did.

"The infrared examination of the Isleworth Madonna [as Earlier Mona Lisa is also known] is just tediously exact and is clearly the kind of drawing that's made when you're copying something rather than generating it."

This is the issue that must be overcome to conclude the picture is an authentic Leonardo.  He, and many other masters, always adapts his underdrawing in some way as the painting progresses, to solve any pictorial clumsiness or to refine a pose, etc.  The Isleworth is a beautiful picture, no doubt, but this issue of the absence of pentimenti will have to be explained away, somehow, to gain signature status.

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Sir Wearer of Hats

A little known fact is that Leonardo painted seven versions of the Mona Lisa and all but one have the words “this is a fake”written on the canvases in felt-tipped pen. I saw a DocWhomentuary about it.

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Scholar4Truth

I notice that in comparing the two pictures, her hair seems much thinner and shorter  in the picture on the right then on the left, and her smile seems much wider on the left then the one to the right in addition to her nose seems to have more of a point then the one picture on the left.  Anyone else see differences in these features?

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