Scientists use X-ray tech to discover Leonardo da Vinci’s unique painting technique for the Mona Lisa, giving new insight into the master’s creativity.
Scientists have cracked another mystery of the world-famous Mona Lisa. By using X-ray technology, they’ve figured out more about how Leonardo da Vinci painted this iconic artwork. And guess what? It turns out Leonardo had his own special recipe for the painting’s first layer.
The scientists teamed up with art experts in France and Britain. They looked at the chemical makeup of a teeny, tiny piece of the painting. What they found was a unique compound called plumbonacrite. This discovery means that Leonardo likely used lead oxide powder to make the paint thicker and dry faster.
Victor Gonzalez, the main scientist behind the study, has spent a lot of time studying the art of Leonardo, Rembrandt, and others. He says that Leonardo loved to try new things. “Each of his paintings is its own special project,” Gonzalez noted.
Carmen Bambach, an art specialist not involved in this study, said that this discovery is a big deal. “It shows that Leonardo was always up for trying new things,” she mentioned in an email.
The small piece of the painting they studied is almost too small to see without help. It’s no bigger than a human hair and is from the top right corner of the Mona Lisa.
To get the details, scientists used a machine that speeds up particles close to the speed of light. This allowed them to find out exactly what elements make up this special compound. What they found confirms that Leonardo used a unique recipe for his paint, making the Mona Lisa all the more special.
This is not the end, though. There’s still a lot more to learn about Leonardo’s works, including the Mona Lisa. As Gonzalez says, “We’re just scratching the surface. There’s a lot more to find out.”
So, this new discovery is just one more piece of the puzzle, helping us understand the creative genius of Leonardo da Vinci a little better.
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