The Story Behind Leonardo's Lost Painting

Restorer Dianne Modestini and CNN presenter Nick Glass with Da Vinci's 'Salvator Mundi'.
Restorer Dianne Modestini and CNN presenter Nick Glass with Da Vinci's 'Salvator Mundi'.
(CNN)
  • "Salvator Mundi," a recently authenticated work by Leonardo da Vinci.

    "Salvator Mundi," a recently authenticated work by Leonardo da Vinci.

Perhaps 15 paintings by Leonardo da Vinci survive today, including the iconic ‘Mona Lisa’ and ‘The Last Supper.’

A newly-authenticated work by the Renaissance master  – known as 'Salvator Mundi ' or ‘Saviour of the World’ has caused a sensation in the art world. It depicts the head and shoulders of Christ, and though 500 years old, after cleaning and restoration, is in remarkably good condition.

The painting was first recorded in the collection of Charles I in 1649, but a century or so later it seemed to have disappeared. In 1958, a painting with the same name, but greatly altered in appearance was sold from a private collection for £45.

A later owner decided to have it cleaned and that is when layers of grime and overpainting were carefully removed to reveal a lost treasure. Considered by some to be priceless, the work is currently valued at £125 million and is owned by an American consortium.

In an upcoming TV special, CNN talks with Robert Simon, an old masters dealer acting on behalf of the painting’s owners, and to Dianne Modestini, the restorer who brought the painting back to its original state. Click here for show times.

The painting will be shown in the context of the master's other works in the highly-anticipated Leonardo exhibition at the National Gallery in London, from November 9, 2011 – February 5, 2012.

The last time a Leonardo painting was discovered was in 1909, when the Benois Madonna, now in the Hermitage in St. Petersburg, came to light.

 

More News Feed Headlines

Los Angeles City Council Approves $1.5 Billion Lucas Museum

  • June 28, 2017 12:31

Star Wars creator and art collector George Lucas will finally get his museum built after years of ...

Read More

Former U.S.  President Jimmy Carter and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter shaking hands with children during the Indonesian elections June 5-9, 1999.

Jimmy Carter Painting Brings Over Half Million Dollars at Auction

  • June 27, 2017 13:38

A painting by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, age 92, fetched $525,000 at auction last week. ...

Read More

Franz Marc's Pferde in Landschaft, one of the artworks discovered in the Gurlitt collection (probably 1911, gouache on coloured paper).

First-Ever Exhibitions of Gurlitt Art Trove Planned For This Fall

  • June 27, 2017 13:00

Bonn's Bundeskunsthalle and the Museum of Fine Arts Bern will finally exhibit works from the ...

Read More

Salvador Dali and his ocelot

Salvador Dali's Body to Be Exhumed in Paternity Case

  • June 27, 2017 12:28

A Madrid judge has ruled in favor of a Spanish woman to have the remains of surrealist artist ...

Read More

Related Press Releases

Related Events from ArtfixDaily Calendar

 

ArtfixDaily Artwire