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Da Vinci’s Lost ‘Last Supper’ Details Are Yours To Relish In Ultra-High Res
By Mikelle Leow, 22 Jun 2020
Image via Wikimedia Commons (public domain)
There’s a subtle foreshadowing of Judas’ betrayal to Jesus Christ that you might have not uncovered in Leonardo da Vinci’s The Last Supper, as the detail is one of many others in the masterpiece that are long faded.
Luckily, some students of the Italian polymath were so inspired by the work, they had to replicate it. The artist Giampietrino was among them, and his more enduring copy of The Last Supper attributes details of the original that would have gone widely unnoticed if it didn’t exist.
The faded elements are now brought forward to the masses, thanks to a recent collaboration between Google Arts and Culture and the Royal Academy of Arts in London (RA), who owns the Giampietrino copy. As well as Giampietrino’s The Last Supper, the pair have freshly digitized over 200 of the institution’s possessions, with 20 of them being captured in Gigapixel clarity—meaning ultra-high resolution—using Google’s proprietary camera.
The RA purchased the Giampietrino copy for 600 guineas in 1821, making it the institution’s priciest artifact then.
While Giampietrino’s version is believed to have been completed soon after, or around the same time, as Da Vinci’s painting, it managed to preserve more details. This is mainly because his was created with oil paint on canvas, as opposed to Da Vinci’s experimentation with tempura and oil on a wall.
Jesus’ feet can be observed more closely, as will Thomas’ raised finger indicating the disciples’ skepticism about Christ being able to rise from the dead. Judas knocks over a now-apparent cellar of salt, foreboding his eventual act of disloyalty.
Art lovers can view the piece up close on the web or through AR via Google Arts and Culture.
[via artnet News, cover image via Wikimedia Commons (public domain)]
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