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

Scene of Adolfo Pinto (pt)’s Family by José Ferraz de Almeida Júnior (1891)

IBM Watson Becomes Museum Guide

  • April 19, 2017 13:19

Museum visitors can now talk to artificial intelligence and get real-time answers about the ...

Read More

A fake Rothko painting that Sotheby's chairman Domenico De Sole and his wife bought at Knoedler and settled over in another claim against the gallery and its former director Ann Freedman.

Lawsuit Settled Against Art Historian in Knoedler Case

  • April 12, 2017 22:21

One of ten lawsuits filed against now-defunct Knoedler gallery in New York has been settled out ...

Read More

Evin House of Detention in Tehran

Tehran Gallerists Charged With Attempting to Overthrow Government

  • April 12, 2017 22:21

The owners of Tehran’s Aun Gallery, Iranian-American Karan Vafadari and his wife Afarin Niasari, ...

Read More

'Pink Star' Diamond Fetches Record $71.2 Million in Hong Kong

  • April 04, 2017 14:52

Huge and rare, the 59.60 carat 'Pink Star' is the largest polished diamond ever to go under the ...

Read More

Related Press Releases

Related Events from ArtfixDaily Calendar

 

ArtfixDaily Artwire