ES - EN - FR - PT - IT

Louvre

Don't miss anything

Mona Lisa

by Leonardo da Vinci.

So many people around to see the most famous painting in the world. Famous only because it was stolen by an Italian in 1911, and became the most famous property robbery in times of peace. Scandal in the world press, ..”where is the Joconde?” was a global issue. You have to imagine that if it had not been stolen, probably nobody would be here today.

To appreciate the Mona Lisa, you have to forget the selfies, the people around you. You have to breathe 3 seconds and think about the next phrase that Leonardo said: 'A face is not well done unless it expresses a state of mind.'

The emotional or psychological state is the subject of the painting. In the artist's portrait of Lisa Gherardini, a noblewoman whose portrait was commissioned by her husband Franciso del Giacondo, hence her name in French 'La Joconde', Leonardo focuses on the expression of happiness. Using his sfumato technique, the transition between the light and the curtain creates an increased sense in the connection between the viewer and the subject, almost as if one were conversing with her. How Leonardo makes the experience so personal; as if it were us, the spectator, who decides how she feels. Leonardo gives us the power to complete this work of art with our own subjective feelings, making this both a traditional and very modern portrait.

Mona Lisa's smile is accentuated by rising to the right side of her face and being flatter on the left side. This also increases the ambiguity of her expression. Leonardo dresses her in simple clothes, so the viewer can concentrate more on her face and the half-fictional landscape behind her. Mona Lisa’s gaze follows you, you never know if she’s smiling at you.

Mona Lisa is a real woman, but Leonardo also seems to make her divine! She calm and confident expression creates a sense of mystery as if she understands the secrets of the world. Her expression is repeated in other divine figures of Leonardo's paintings, such as the Virgin of the Rocks or The Virgin with Saint Anne, both in the Louvre.

Louvre