And under painting, a drawing appeared. Since 2008, six experts from the National Gallery is busy preparing for their Virgin of the rocks in all the seams. This table star, the second version of the one owned by the Louvre, still hiding many mysteries. Starting with its attribution: the version in london is-it of the hand of the master? Fully, partially? Or those of Giovanni Ambrogio de Predis and his brother Evangelista, with which Vinci is working? The debate is still vivid and can be a recent discovery, the will to move forward. Thanks to imaging techniques advanced, the experts of the National Gallery have been able to find a preparatory sketch under the paint. And the sketch is very different from the final composition.
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“The reason why Leonardo has abandoned the first project remains a mystery,” says the Guardian a representative of the National Gallery. the Virgin of The rocks, representing Mary, saint John the Baptist, the baby Jesus and an angel, was painted between 1491 and 1508. “The two characters are placed higher in the drawing, while the angel, turned to the outside, look at Christ with what appears to be a hug much closer”, he adds.
If from a restoration campaign, conducted ten years ago, this sketch was known, its exact route has not been revealed only very recently. The experts were able to bring out the zinc content in the drawings with the most recent techniques, such as hyperspectral imaging, a technology used by the u.s. Navy. “We also see prints of hands resulting from the application of a layer more or less uniform primer on the panel,” explains the spokesperson. This is probably the work of a wizard, or perhaps that of Leonardo himself.”
500 years after his death, the author of The mona lisa will be the subject of a special exhibition from the 9th November next. With “Leonardo: Experience a Masterpiece”, the museum of london promises an “exploration ” immersive” of The Virgin of the rock . Visitors will trace the research of Leonardo da Vinci and follow the different stages of the painting’s composition. At the end of a journey of four rooms, the work will be exhibited in a setting created for the occasion, imagining the environment that might accompany it.