Self-Portrait By Leonardo Da Vinci – A True Renaissance Man
The puzzling self-portrait by Leonardo Da Vinci was drawn using Sanguine which is a blood red colour and has been fading. According to researchers it was drawn on paper of linen and cotton fibers and hemp rags. We got it straight from Turin where it was kept in a temperature and humidity controlled vault because of its fragile condition.
During the Second World War a lot of people thought that the portrait has magical powers and that whoever looked at it will have a lot of strength so they moved it from Turin to Rome to protect it from the Nazis so they wouldn’t gain more power. Many people have different opinions on whether it’s an actual self-portrait or a drawing of his father or his uncle since when it was drawn Leonardo was only in his 50s but in the photo he looks older. Also Leonardo thought that art shouldn’t be a picture of the artist. Other people because Leonardo never did self-portraits.
Personally I like it because I think it’s very interesting how Leonardo put in emotions into his self-portrait since most self-portraits at that time were emotionless and he was the Renaissance Man so he changed everyone’s idea of art and that Leonardo was alone in that picture and individualism was something that became more common and also something that Leonardo felt very enthusiastic about, as you will see in many of his art works he liked to show the reality of human nature and its flaws. Also painting wasn’t directly religious in anyway unlike the medieval times and it was very realistic even though it’s a sketch. Which proved that Leonardo is truly the Renaissance Man because he inspired so many people to change the way the drew self-portraits.
The portrait is of an old man that has a long white beard and bushy brows which is how Leonardo saw himself and it was also used to symbolize philosophers, prophets and also god, which of course doesn’t mean that Leonardo is saying that he is god but it tells people that the picture is related to god. Some people also say that its Leonardo’s way of showing that he’s a higher being. Also much like the famous “Mona Lisa” his expression is really hard to read and he appears to be looking at something for a very long time or just really sad.
Unfortunately, since it’s 500 years old and because of its expose to sunlight and poor maintenance it started fading and since the paper started turning yellow it made the red chalk look more brown. Even though it’s fading and there’s some fungi on it, it’s still very popular because Leonardo never did self-portraits and even if it does fade his legacy will still exist.
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