X-Ray Technology Reveals Leonardo da Vinci’s Secrets

Have you ever visited the Mona Lisa in the Louvre? Certainly you’ve seen photos of this famous lady. Have you ever been baffled by how Leonardo da Vinci was able to create such subtle shadows and detailed lighting on Mona Lisa’s face? If you have, you’re not alone! Many artists, scientists, and historians have been stumped by his work for centuries.

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In 2004, 39 specialists began examining the painting using radiology’s most advanced technology. They were able to see each layer of paint that were stroked on by Da Vinci. Most importantly, they found that he used a well-known renaissance painting technique called “sfumato.” This is the mixing of thin layers of pigment, glaze, and oil to create incredibly lifelike shadows. The artist painted these 30 layers as thin as half the width of  a human hair! See the full article here for more information.

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