PARIS — Much about Leonardo Da Vinci remains an enigma: the smile of the “Mona Lisa”; why the world’s most famous painter left so many works unfinished; and more recently, who bought the contentious “Salvator Mundi.”
A new exhibit at the Louvre, however, opening Thursday and marking the 500th anniversary of the Italian master’s death, tries to sketch out as complete a picture of the artist and thinker as possible.
Drawing from the Louvre’s permanent collection and institutions around the world, the exhibit brings together some 160 works. They include Da Vinci masterpieces, dozens of studies and scientific sketches, and pieces by other artists in Da Vinci’s orbit. Visitors can also experience a virtual reality portion of the exhibit that delves into the story behind the “Mona Lisa.”
“We wished, in order to pay homage to the artist, to be able to show the entirety of Leonardo Da Vinci’s career and his development and to explain, ultimately, the sense of his life,” curator Vincent Delieuvin told The Associated Press.
The exhibit runs through Feb. 24, 2020. Visitors must reserve tickets online in advance, and the Louvre said it has already pre-sold 220,000 tickets as of Monday morning.