The Mona Lisa is one of the most famous paintings in the world. This masterpiece was created by Leonarda da Vinci during the Renaissance. The work was most likely produced in the early 1500’s.
Photo: Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vinci (Creative Commons: Dennis Jarvis).
Leonarda da Vinci and the Mona Lisa
Leonardo da Vinci lived from 1452 to 1519. Although he achieved fame as an Italian painter, da Vinci was a true ‘Renaissance Man’. His interests and talents included art, the sciences, engineering, music, literature, and history.
The Mona Lisa painting may be seen as his greatest accomplishment today. However, he is also well known for his early designs of a flying machine, the submarine, and solar power. His work in the study of human anatomy is also well-known. Da Vinci is seen by many as a genius who mastered many fields of study during his lifetime.
The Mona Lisa is thought to be a painting of Lisa del Giocondo. She was the wife of a wealthy Italian silk merchant. The merchant commissioned the work to celebrate the birth their second son.
The Renaissance (Rebirth) was a period from the 1300’s to the 1600’s in Europe. It began in Italy but spread throughout Europe. It was a period of reawakening for Europe. During this time Europe transformed from the medieval to the early modern period.
Europe emerged out of the Dark Ages and rediscovered classical Greek philosophy. A new form of humanism emerged. A renewed sense of the human spirit and individuality began to lay the foundations for the modern world. The Renaissance influenced art and philosophy, but also shaped the politics and sciences of the time. Capitalism emerged and laid the foundation for major changes in the politics of the time.
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Da Vinci — the Genius, Museum of Science.