Leonardo’s lover and Mona Lisa’s twin
Anyone who keeps the ability to see beauty never grows old
Who painted Lisa Gherardini (the Mona Lisa)? Was it Leonardo Da Vinci or was it his lover Andrea Salai? The answer depends on which one you are talking about. Look at the images above. The Mona Lisa on the left above was painted by Da Vinci and the Mona Lisa on the right was painted by his lover, Andrea Salai. Both were painted at the same time, are the same size, and are practically the same in detail. For far too long Salai’s Mona Lisa was misunderstood and hidden away but now its secrets have been revealed.
Art experts thought until very recently that Andrea Salai’s version of the iconic Mona Lisa was simply a smaller copy by some unknown Flemish painter. The painting had been covered in varnish and the bottom part of the painting was completely obscured. So it was ignored and cast aside.
To the world at large both Andrea Salai and the twin painting are unknown. The twin Mona Lisa is still hidden away, buried in the basement of the Prado art museum in Madrid. As I plan to go there in April this article http://www.gonzalo-vazquez-vilar.eu/nota/ caught my eye. I was more than surprised. The Mona Lisa has a twin? Really? So, where is she and why don’t we know about her? Will I be able to see her when I visit the Prado?
The truth of the painting was finally revealed when the twin Mona Lisa was restored. Experts now believe that Leonardo’s disciple and lover, Andrea Salai, painted in tandem with him as he painted his masterpiece. They believe Andrea imitated his progress stroke by stroke as he painted. The lower part of the painting was discovered and the whole painting was found it to be in a much better condition that Leonardo’s masterpiece. Below is a high resolution comparison of the Mona Lisas: