Da Vinci Paints The Last Supper - History

Da Vinci Paints The Last Supper - History

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In 1498 Leonardo Da Vinci painted his most famous mural, The Last Supper. The mural depicts the last meal of Christ before being incarcerated

Painting “The Last Supper” by Leonardo Da Vinci

One of the most well-known paintings, called The Last Supper, has three different versions. In this paper, two of the versions will be discussed. The first one discussed, created by Leonardo da Vinci in 1495-98, was a fresco painting in the church of Santa Maria delle Grazie. The second one, created by Tintoretto in 1592-94, was created by using oil on canvas.

The works of art are documenting “The Last Supper,” which was Christ’s last meal with his 12 disciples before his Crucifixion. The most well-known version of the painting is da Vinci’s version. As stated, his painting was a fresco, but he tried using a new technique, which did not work out well for him. His colors were more different and vivid, and he was able to use more detail. As stated in the article, Leonardo took a much more realistic approach, which set him apart from his predecessors. Unlike the other versions, da Vinci doesn’t just show the event as a whole, but he shows a specific moment- when Christ is announcing that one of his apostles will betray him.

Perspective wise, Jesus is the central point and all the lines creating depth can be lead back to him. The article also says that Leonardo uses symbolic representation in the painting by separating the apostles into four groups of three. He says this is symbolizing the fact that three is a divine number and four is a number of man. This apparently goes to show that Christ was the one who was able to join people together through his crucifixion. Over all, Leonardo’s depiction of “The Last Supper” was very realistic and strong. The next one discussed was painted by Tintoretto, who was a popular Italian painter of 15th century Europe. He is well-known for creating various works of art throughout this time period.

His real name was Jacapo Robusti and he was born in Venice, Italy in 1518 and died in 1594. Tintoretto’s depiction of the painting was very different from the others because of many reasons. For example, the table of the last supper is not symmetrical like the others. Also, the twelve apostles cannot be pointed out in the painting. Tintoretto also added “closeness” to the story by incorporating everyday events such as people cleaning up after others and a cat looking into a basket. Medium wise, the damp, humid climate in Venice didn’t work well for a fresco painting, so he resorted to using oil on canvas. Tintoretto was also known for his dynamic style and bold highlights painted on a dark background.

Overall, each version of “The Last Supper” was very unique in their own individual way and each had an important influence on the depictions that followed. Both artists have a unique style, which was obviously one of the main reasons their paintings turned out differently. It could also be because they read the painting differently from each other. There is not a right or wrong way to depict the event, and both paintings get their point across.

The Last Supper Essay

The Last Supper is one the most renowned work of art in the human history. A celebrated Italian painter named Leonardo da Vinci did the painting between the years 1494 and 1499 (Barcilon & Marani, 2001). Many writers have described da Vinci as an intelligent academic painter with an outstanding impression (Kemp, 2011). The painting was specially made as part of a project to refurbish a cathedral by Ludovico Sforza who was the duke of Milan.

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During the time of the painting, da Vinci was working for Sforza. Having worked for him for eighteen years, Sforza saw it right for his servant to paint a portrait of a religious scene (Zani, 2001). The original painting of the art is situated in the Santa Maria delle Grazie Church in Milan.

This piece of art is painted onto the rear part of the church’s banquet hall. The painting measures 5 by 29 feet. This art was painted using a tempera style. As such, the style combines the use of egg yolks, vinegar, and oil paints. The combinations of these materials were applied onto dried plaster.

The work depicted the scene of the last supper as illustrated in the Bible. Through the painting, da Vinci was able to show how Jesus’ disciples reacted to his announcement that one of them was going to hand him over to the authorities. Based on the painting, da Vinci illustrates that Jesus’ disciples were shocked by the news.

The painting shows 13 men sitting at the back of a table. The person in the center of the picture is Jesus Christ. Christ is depicted seated with his eyes closed, hands on the table, and with no facial expressions. The 12 men sitting around him are his disciples. Six disciples sit on each side of the table.

In the painting, the 12 individuals have been categorized into four clusters (King, 2012). Each cluster comprises of three individuals. Individuals in each group portray a common visual expression. From the rear left hand side of Jesus are Bartholomew, James, and Andrew.

The three individuals look intently at Jesus with a mystified look on their faces and their eyes broadly open. The subsequent cluster comprises of Judas, Peter, and John. Judas is depicted with a sack of silver in his hand. This represents the bribe he had been offered to betray his master.

Peter is depicted with a knife in his hand. This implies that he was ready to protect his master. On the other hand, John was depicted sobbing. The subsequent group comprises of Thomas, James, and Phillip. The three individuals are depicted looking astonished and seem to be enquiring for a clarification from Jesus. The final group comprises of Matthew, Jude, and Zealot. The three men are depicted facing one another as if they were arguing about the news Jesus had delivered.

Da Vinci – Last Supper Essay

Leonardo da Vinci’s The Last Supper painting was commissioned by Ludovico Sforza, the Duke of Milan. Sforza wanted Da Vinci to paint this image on the wall in the dining hall of Santa Maria delle Grazie, a church in Northern Italy. Unlike other presentations of The Last Supper, Leonardo’s version depicts a specific moment in time. The enormous painting (15 feet by 29 feet) shows the moment just seconds after Jesus explained to his disciples that one of them will betray him and turn him in to the authorities. Da Vinci’s use of perspective, moreover, allows for so much more detail of the subjects.

Da Vinci makes this piece look almost 3D with his use of depth. All thirteen men are placed perfectly behind the table. The back wall looks as if it was several feet behind them. Thomas’s head shows but his body is covered by James the Greater. Peter’s neck is behind Judas but his face is shown in the ear of John the apostle. In their interactions with each other, trying to find out who the traitor is, Da Vinci depicts the sadness and confusion in their faces after Jesus reveals his inevitable betrayal. Peter is especially confused and begins whispering to John the apostle to ask him who Jesus was talking about (King, 181).

Leonardo didn’t make this mural painting the way others were made. Instead of using pigments and plaster, Da Vinci started out using a strong base coat on the wall of the church. After laying the base coat of lead white on the wall, Da Vinci hammered a nail into the plaster. The nail identified the center of the mural, which was where all lines and attention would be, the face of Jesus. Leonardo called this nail the “diminishing point” which was the location where all lines of sight “tend and converge.” You can still see the small hole in the right temple of Jesus inside the church.

Da Vinci painted the disciples so that you could tell their emotions by their body language and hand gestures. The hand gestures shown by many of the disciples express their thoughts. Leonardo used this technique often but more so in The Last Supper. The painting is full of gestures and expressions that suggest the disciples are shocked, confused, and even sad after Jesus makes his statement. To the left of Jesus, Philip’s hands are on his chest, James the Greater has his hands thrown wide open, while John closes his hands together. Peter has one hand on John the apostle and is holding a knife in the other hand. John has one of the simpler hand gestures with his hands together on the table and his fingers interlaced. Leonardo noted that this gesture could be used to indicate sorrow.

John the apostle was the disciple “whom Jesus loved.” He is portrayed as a slightly feminine character in this painting. The reason for this is mainly because he is much younger than the other disciples. Although John the apostle looks feminine in most Last Supper paintings, Leonardo made him look this way so that people would recognize him when they saw him beside Christ. During the time of the Last Supper, he is leaning on Jesus’s bosom and is still there after Jesus warns them of a traitor. Peter then asks John who Jesus was speaking of. John asked Jesus saying, “Lord, who is it?” Jesus replies “He it is, to whom I shall give a sop, when I have dipped it” and then when he dipped the sop, he gave it to Judas Iscariot.

Judas, the traitor, is among the group of disciples. He is sitting in between John the apostle and Peter while holding the bag of coins that had been given to him for the betrayal of Jesus. Inside this bag was money that Judas had received from the chief priests. He had gone to them and made a bargain. Judas asked them what they would give him if he would lead them to where Jesus was. They then counted out and presented Judas with the thirty pieces of silver. During the time of The Last Supper, Judas arrives with the bag of coins but still is unsuspicious to the other disciples. This was because Judas was the treasurer of the disciples. The disciples were used to him carrying money so he gained no attention when Jesus told the disciples there was a traitor in the midst of them.

Da Vinci managed to capture The Last Supper’s most climatic moment and make it look more realistic than ever. He did this using many schemes, from how he gave the disciples different facial expressions and hand gestures, all the way down to how he positioned them so that they could interact the way he wanted them to. Da Vinci gave us a clearer view of how The Last Supper went down, all the while making it easy for us to know who is who in the painting.

King, Ross. Leonardo and the Last Supper. London: Bloomsbury, 2012. Print.

“Last Supper – History.” Last Supper – History. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 July 2016. <http://www.bibliotecapleyades.net/davi/project/history.htm>.

The Holy Bible, Containing the Old and New Testaments. New York: American Bible Society, 1962. Print.

Leonardo’s “Last Supper”

Sometime between 1495 and 1496, Leonardo da Vinci painted one of Western art’s true masterpieces: The Last Supper. His then-patron, Ludovico Sforza, Duke of Milan, commissioned the work for the refectory of the Convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie. Ludovico had recently undertaken the building of the convent on the site of the Chapel of St. Mary of the Graces, built earlier by his father, Francesco.

Leonardo’s “canvas” for this work was huge by his standards. The Mona Lisa, for instance, is 30.2 x 20.9 inches. His previously largest painting, the unfinished Adoration of the Magi, is 94 x 98 inches. But you could hang almost any Leonardo canvas on any wall in your house – except The Last Supper, which is five yards tall by almost ten yards wide.

If only Leonardo had painted it on canvas!

But it’s a fresco. Painters of frescos work by laying down new lime plaster over stone walls and painting quickly with water-based powdered pigments that dry with the plaster: all fresh (fresco in Italian) ingredients. The damp plaster and the wet pigments dry together, integrated, and can be amazingly long-lived: on the Greek island of Santorini, there are still-visible Minoan frescos painted more than 3600 years ago.

One of Leonardo’s early sketches

Leonardo, always the innovator, decided to use tempera pigments mixed with oil for The Last Supper. He did this for several reasons: he wanted to get finer details and more vivid colors, and he wanted to work at his usual pace, which is to say slowly. Leonardo is famous for fussing. For instance, he probably began work on his portrait of Lisa Gherardini (Mona Lisa) in Florence, Italy in 1503 and had the painting with him, still unfinished, when he died in Amboise, France in 1519.

The trouble with Leonardo’s fresco technique is that, whereas it looked spectacular when completed, it began fading almost immediately. Today, only about 20 percent of the fresco remains visible, and it’s uncertain what’s left is salvageable. The convent is in a low-lying, damp area of Milan, and the refectory wall backed up against the kitchen with its constant heat and steam, and the dining area was lighted by candles – meaning candle smoke from would fill the room.

Three hundred years later, Napoleon’s troops, billeted in the convent, entertained themselves by pelting manure at the fresco, and during RAF bombing of Milan in WWII, the refectory roof was blown off, temporarily exposing The Last Supper to rain and dust.

Restoration efforts have helped preserve what remains, and the fresco is now in a climate-controlled room. Time-limited visits are permitted but require you to enter “through several pollution and humidity filtration chambers.” The thing is: the closer you get the worse it looks.

At Santa Maria della Grazie today

And we’ll never be able to see it as it looked when Leonardo first painted it. Or will we? I’ll answer that below. But first: the drama in the painting.

Leonardo does not portray the institution of the Eucharist, nor does he give us a charming tableau of fellowship around the Passover table in the Cenacle. He chose instead to illustrate the dramatic moment described in John 13: 21-30 when the Lord prophesies Judas’ betrayal. Leonardo captures the shock and bewilderment among the Apostles in the moments after Jesus has said, “Very truly, I tell you, one of you will betray me.”

As Matthew writes, “And they became greatly distressed and began to say to him one after another, ‘Surely not I, Lord?’” (26:17-30) That question is the same one Mark records. (14:12-25) Luke writes: “Then they began to ask one another which one of them it could be who would do this.” (22:7-23) But it’s John’s report that fired Leonardo’s imagination.

John writes, referring to himself: “One of his disciples – the one whom Jesus loved – was reclining next to him” – that “him” refers to Jesus – and “Simon Peter therefore motioned to him to ask Jesus of whom he was speaking.” This Leonardo catches exactly, foreshadowing the Passion.

Andrea Solari’s copy

As you look at the painting, from left to right the Apostles are Bartholomew, James the Less, Andrew, Peter, Judas, John, [the Lord], Thomas, James the Great, Philip, Matthew, Jude, and Simon. Leonardo has arranged them in trios.

The three on the left seem unsure they’ve heard aright, and James is reaching out to Peter, perhaps for clarification because Peter’s the one you’d ask. For his part, Peter leans behind Judas to ask John, since John is closest to Jesus, to ask the Lord for the identity of the betrayer. Thomas, the other James, and Philip all seem to be expressing one or another version of anxiety about their own possible guilt, and Matthew and Jude, may be asking Simon one of two questions: “Is it you?” – or – “What did the Lord say?”

Every one of them is in denial, with the possible exception of Judas, who clutches his money bag in his right hand and reaches out with his left to dip his finger in the bowl, just as Jesus does the same with His right hand.

Fortunately, few Renaissance painters worked alone. Leonardo himself was early in the employ (as a garzone or studio boy) of Andrea del Verrocchio, and by the time of The Last Supper, when da Vinci was in his late thirties, he had his own garzoni, some of whom doubtless worked with him at Santa Maria delle Grazie, and then tagged along during their master’s trip to France and, perhaps, the low countries.

And it was in Westerlo, Belgium, that one or more of da Vinci’s assistants, principally Andrea Solari, painted an exact replica of The Last Supper for the Norbertine abbey at Tongerlo near Antwerp. It has even been suggested that Leonardo himself may have overseen the reproduction, which, thank heavens, was done in oil again, but this time on canvas. It remains today nearly as vivid as when it was completed in about 1520, the year after Leonardo’s death.

Da Vinci's iconic depiction of Easter's beginnings has a violent history it barely survived

Millions of people around the world are preparing to celebrate Easter.

Easter is the celebration of Jesus' resurrection, and one of the most famous images from that story is Leonardo da Vinci's "The Last Supper." It's an iconic Renaissance masterpiece that's been praised, studied, and copied for over 500 years.

Against all odds, the painting still lingers on the wall of the Convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie in Milan.

Da Vinci began the work in 1495 or 1496 and completed it around 1498. It depicts a famous scene from Holy Thursday, in which Jesus and his Apostles sharing a final meal before his death and resurrection. During the dinner, Jesus revealed that one of his disciples would betray him and hand him over to the authorities for execution (spoiler alert: It was Judas, who da Vinci depicts as spilling salt on the table, as part of some Renaissance pun).

Historian and author Ross King spoke with Business Insider about the mural. King said that his own lifelong fascination with da Vinci — who, as a painter, sculptor, inventor, and scientist, was really the ultimate Renaissance man — prompted him to write the book "Leonardo and the Last Supper."

"I was intrigued by him as a character — an artist, a scientist, a mountain climber, a rock collector, an all-around genius," he said.

Here's the story of "The Last Supper," which survived wars, prisoners, and its artist's identity crisis:

Leonard da Vinci Accidentally Said To Have Used Pietri Bandinelli As Christ

Ten years went by, and the painting remained incomplete. Leonardo could not find just the right face for Judas. He was allowed to search the prison, and there he found the perfect character to portray the man who betrayed Christ. Near the completion of the painting, the model asked if he was allowed to have a look. As he stared at the painting, tears began to flow down his face. When da Vinci asked what was wrong, the model told him that he was Pietri Bandinelli, the same man who had modeled for Christ ten years earlier. He went on to confess that after modelling he began to sin, and soon he turned away from God altogether, resulting in a life of crime, anger, sadness and grief that ended with him being sent to prison for life.

However, this story is false. There are so few records concerning da Vinci’s creation of the ‘Last Supper’, that any account of the period that’s this detailed is immediately suspect. Records show that Leonardo da Vinci did not take 10-25 years to complete the painting, He began in 1495 and completed it four years later in 1499. The tale is simply a religious allegory warning of the dangers of spiritual decay.

‘The Last Supper’ by Leonardo da Vinci Essay

Leonardo da Vinci’s Last Supper is one of the most appreciated masterpieces in the world. This religious mural painting has as a mayor theme to represent the Christian event known as the Institution of the Eucharist. One can appreciate many elements of design in da Vinci’s painting. For example, da Vinci uses mostly geometric shapes to represent the windows behind Jesus, the doors behind the apostles, and the ceiling. Next, lines are all over the painting, like in the borders of the table and its cover, and many curved lines depict the apostles’ clothing.

Also, color in this painting represents the different clothes wore by the apostles and Jesus himself. Color also helps the viewer to see the outside world through the windows behind Jesus. In addition, da Vinci uses simulated texture in a couple of places, like the ceiling, the clothes, and the table cover. Those spots on the painting look quite real and touchable. Finally, there is a constant rhythm in the ceiling.

The viewer can also perceive various principles of design in The Last Supper. For example, right away, it is obvious that the center of attention is Jesus, especially because there is a lot of movement created by the apostles’ faces and positions that make the viewer focus on Jesus. Also, the painting is extremely balanced because if it was to be fold with Jesus in the middle, it would fit almost perfectly. Da Vinci’s work produces a strong feeling of peace on the people who get a chance to see it, not only because of the event that is taking place, but because it is so well balanced and the colors used make good contrasts.

Repetition is used very little in the ceiling, and the doors meanwhile, the brush strokes are not that important for the painting neither. Leonardo da Vinci painted The Last Supper because Ludovico Sforza, the Duke of Milan, asked him to do so. So it is really not known of how da Vinci felt about his painting. The combination of elements and principles of design make this painting one of the most beautiful in the world. Its balance, emphasis, and movement make its subject so obvious that makes the painting very appealing. The Last Supper is also the root of many controversial issues regarding the Catholic Church.

Interpretation of the Last Supper by Leonardo da Vinci

Created during the period 1495-98, Leonardo da Vinci's mural painting known as The Last Supper - a masterpiece of the Italian High Renaissance and one of the best-known works of Christian art - illustrates the scene from the last days of Jesus Christ, as described in the Gospel of John 13:21. Flanked by his twelve apostles, Jesus has just declared that one of them will betray him. ("Verily I say unto you: one of you will betray me.") The picture depicts the reaction of each disciple to the news. Although on the surface it looks like a straightforward piece of Biblical art, it is in fact an exceptionally complex work, whose mathematical symbolism, psychological complexity, use of perspective and dramatic focus, make it the first real example of High Renaissance aesthetics. The picture measures 15 feet × 29 ft, and occupies an end wall in the dining hall at the convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie in Milan. Sadly, in order to give himself the opportunity of making changes to the painting as he went along - something that is not possible with regular wet fresco painting - Leonardo first sealed the stone wall surface and then painted over it with tempera and oils, as if it were a wooden panel. As a result, the work began deteriorating almost from the moment it was finished - writing a mere 70 years later, the biographer Giorgio Vasari described it as "so badly done that all that can now be seen of it is a glaring spot" - and has been the subject of a recent 20-year restoration campaign. Even so, the work remains one of the greatest Renaissance paintings.

More Analysis of The Last Supper

The identity of the individual apostles in The Last Supper is confirmed by The Notebooks of Leonardo Da Vinci. From left to right in the painting, they are depicted in four groups of three, and react to the news as follows:

Bartholomew, James the Less and Andrew are all surprised.
Judas Iscariot is taken aback next to him, Peter holds a knife and looks stormy, while the boyish John, the youngest apostle, simply swoons.
Thomas is upset James is shocked. Philip wants an explanation.
In the final group of three, Jude Thaddeus and Matthew turn to Simon the Zealot for answers.

In short, the painting captures twelve individuals in the midst of querying, gesticulating, or showing various shades of horror, anger and disbelief. It's live, it's human and it's in complete contrast to the serene and expansive pose of Jesus himself.

As in all religious paintings on this theme, Jesus himself is the dynamic centre of the composition. Several architectural features converge on his figure, while his head represents the vanishing point for all perspective lines - an event which makes The Last Supper the epitome of Renaissance single point linear perspective. Meantime, his expansive gesture - indicating the holy sacrament of bread and wine - is not meant for his apostles, but for the monks and nuns of the Santa Maria delle Grazie monastery.

In most versions of The Last Supper, Judas is the only disciple not to have a halo, or else is seated separately from the other apostles. Leonardo, however, seats everyone on the same side of the table, so that all are facing the viewer. Even so, Judas remains a marked man. First, he is grasping a small bag, no doubt symbolizing the 30 pieces of silver he has been paid to betray Jesus he has also knocked over the salt pot - another symbol of betrayal. His head is also positioned in a lower position than anyone in the picture, and is the only person left in shadow.

Leonardo employed new techniques to communicate his ideas to the viewer. Instead of relying exclusively on artistic conventions, he would use ordinary 'models' whom he encountered on the street, as well as gestures derived from the sign language used by deaf-mutes, and oratorical gestures employed by public speakers. Interestingly, following Leonardo's depiction of Thomas quizzically holding up his index finger, Raphael (1483-1520) portrayed Leonardo himself in the The School of Athens (1510-11) making an identical gesture.

Mathematical Symbolism

The painting contains a number of allusions to the number 3, (perhaps symbolizing the Holy Trinity). The disciples are seated in groups of three there are three windows, while the figure of Jesus is given a triangular shape, marked by his head and two outstretched arms.

Laid out on the table, one can clearly make out the lacework of the tablecloth, transparent wine glasses, pewter dishes, pitchers of water, along with the main dish, duck in orange sauce. All these items, portrayed in immaculate detail, anticipate the still life genre perfected by Dutch Realist painters of the 17th century.

Leonardo's meticulous crafting of The Last Supper, along with his skills as a painter, draughtsman, scientist and inventor, as well as his focus on the dignity of man, has added to his reputation as the personification of intellectual artist and creative thinker, rather than merely a decorative painter paid to paint so many square yards a day. This idea of the dignity of the artist, and the importance of disegno rather than colorito, was further developed by Michelangelo and others, culminating in the establishment of the Academy of Art in Florence and the Academy of Art in Rome.

Da Vinci Code and Other Books

Testifying to the enduring appeal of this masterpiece of religious art, Leonardo's Last Supper has been the subject of numerous conspiracy theories and endless arcane theories, such as those outlined in The Da Vinci Code (2003) by Dan Brown, and The Templar Revelation (1997). The figure of the apostle John, for instance, is often cited as that of Mary Magdalene. Leaving aside the incredible notion that a painting devoted to Jesus and twelve apostles could omit an apostle without some convincing explanation, John's girl-ish figure was not an uncommon sight. For example, the Last Supper (1447) by Andrea del Castagno (1420-57), and the Last Supper (1480) by Domenico Ghirlandaio (1449-94) - who incidentally taught Michelangelo - both portray John with a feminine looking figure with long fair hair. Furthermore, it was quite common in quattrocento painting for new or young converts to be depicted with feminine forms. In short, most of this type of populist speculation remains unconfirmed by scientific study.

If you're looking for paintings or posters by other High Renaissance artists, try these resources:

Leonardo Da Vinci's Life

A work three years in the making, Leonardo Da Vinci's The Last Supper remains one of the greatest masterpieces of all time. Even over 500 years after the painting was completed, this piece remains one of the most studied paintings in history, and The Last Supper is among the most sold of all Da Vinci posters.

In 1495 Leonardo Da Vinci was commissioned by Ludovico il Moro to paint a wall in the refectory of the Santa Maria delle Grazie in Milan. The dining hall that Leonardo was to decorate with his painting was located in the building adjacent to the church. Leonardo was asked to create a portrait of Christ's last supper with his disciples, but more importantly, Leonardo chose to paint the very moment in which Christ announces that among the disciples lies a traitor. Through his brilliant brushwork, Leonardo manages to make the moment come to life with his personification of each of the twelve disciples, demonstrating their personal reactions to the announcement through facial expressions and movement.

His 12 disciples, whom Leonardo has cleverly divided into groups of 3, surround Christ, figured in the center of the painting. Alone in the center, Christ's arms lay open, encompassing him into a triangular shape, expressive of the Divine Trinity, while the four groups around him are each boxed within their areas of the painting. Like most of Leonardo's other works, geometric shapes form the painting and aid in creating the painting's dialogue.

Unlike the other paintings that had been made of The Last Supper, Leonardo chose to sit Judas in with the rest of the disciples. In paintings by other artists, Judas was often found separated from the group, making his role of the deceiver obvious. Leonardo's inclusion of Judas with the other disciples is part of what makes the painting such a masterpiece, as his inclusion in the group forces the audience to scan the painting and each character in it, and it strengthens the notion that each of disciples was questioning of himself when Christ announced to his disciples "One of you will betray me."

While Da Vinci posters are abundant, The Last Supper is certainly amongst the most exceedingly popular, found in holy institutions and homes around the world, posters and reproductions seem to be a wonderful way of bringing Leonardo home. Da Vinci posters are timeless and long lasting, but unfortunately the same cannot be said about the actual Last Supper. Early in the 16th century, the painting started chipping away, and while many restorations have taken place to conserve the painting, today many will say that the painting has been repainted more so then restored.

When he began the painting, Leonardo decided not to use the conventional fresco methods as this required that the painting be completed quickly, and it required the painter to work continuously. This was not how Leonardo wanted to work he wanted to take his time and to reproduce his vision without the limitation of time. Leonardo developed a new technique that he would use to complete the painting. Throughout the ages, Leonardo has been criticized for the poor technique, but The Last Supper will always remain as one of the greatest masterpieces of all time.

One of the most widely known works in Italy, a visit to the site isn't all that easy. Apparently, only 20 people can view the work at any given time, and each group is only allotted 15 minutes in the refectory. Anyone planning a visit to the site should certainly consider reserving tickets early on.

Watch the video: What did Leonardo da Vincis Last Supper really look like? DW Documentary