The World's Most Famous Painting

Tina Ryan – Albright-Knox Art Gallery (formerly Columbia U)

Around 1503, Leonardo da Vinci began painting a portrait of a Florentine noblewoman named Lisa Gherardini. The work became so important to him that it remained in his possession until he died in 1519. Half a millennia later, the “Mona Lisa” is considered not only a masterpiece of Renaissance portraiture, but also the most famous painting in all of Western art. In this lecture, Dr. Tina Rivers Ryan explains the work’s enduring appeal by looking closely at its remarkable details, and its equally remarkable history.