Leonardo di Vinci is best known for his infamous paintings, sketches and other artworks, but there’s always been a mystery surrounding the subject of one of his most well known of paintings , the Mona Lisa. It seems that a group of Italian scientists wish to exhume the remains believed to belong to Leonardo da Vinci in an effort to reconstruct his face using the skull. Why? There is a belief brewing that the Mona Lisa could possibly be a self-portrait of da Vinci himself.
Leonardo da Vinci has become something of a legend , not only in the artistic community, but also in the world of unsolved mysteries. People have always wondered how to the famous painter die and whether his remains were really laid to rest in a French chateau. Others have theorized that the ‘Mona Lisa’ was not a portrait of a relative or a past love, but of himself , a self- portrait in disguise.
In order to unlock the mystery, analysis of his remains is needed. To prove or disprove their theory, permission is being sought after from French authorities to unearth the body so that carbon and DNA testing may take place. If the skull has survived over the years and is still intact, the secret behind the identity of Mona Lisa may be revealed. Scientists will use his remains to recreate a virtual and then physical reconstruction of da Vinci’s face. A comparison to the Mona Lisa painting will follow.
If the remains are in good condition, scientists will not only learn more about da Vinci’s life, but also his death. No one knows what will be found in the tomb. The contents could simply house grains and dust. The process of getting permission to exhume the remains is also quite lengthy. The legal procedure will take a long time and most likely even longer since da Vinci is an individual of such significant character. The chain of command and decision-making will involve a commission of experts, which will discuss the request with the French Ministry of Culture.
The details of da Vinci’s death and burial have raised eyebrows over the years. He spent the last three years of his life in France after accepting an invitation from King Francis I, who dubbed him the “first painter to the king.” The location of his death is recorded as Cloux, situated close to the monarch’s summer retreat of Amboise. He passed away in 1519 at the age of 67. Originally, the artist was buried in the palace church of Saint Florentine, but this site was demolished during the French Revolution. People believe his remains were transported to the Saint-Hubert Chapel located near the castle. A tombstone that simply reads “Leonardo da Vinci” was left behind. Over the years, this site has been the final resting place of da Vinci with an asterisk , often stated as the presumed remains of the artist.
If allowed to investigate the remains and conduct tests, a lot of questions concerning one of the greatest artists in history could be answered and a significant art mystery solved.