Meet two descendants of Lisa Gherardini, the model for the Mona Lisa. In 2007, an Italian genealogy expert revealed that the Strozzi family directly descends from Gherardini. In this photo are Tuscan princesses Natalia, left, and Irina Strozzi, I think I see a resemblance. Do you?
Last year I traveled to Paris and spent a full day in the Louvre. If you’ve been recently, you know that the Mona Lisa has a relatively new room that was constructed for her. Her smallish painting sits in the middle of the room on a free standing wall. The walls on the side of the room are filled with other paintings but I don’t think anyone ever pays attention to those!
If you’re someone who wants to see the Mona Lisa, I highly recommend going on to The Louvre’s website. You’ll get a better look at the Mona Lisa there than you ever could in person. The Louvre has a wonderful “focus” option where you can look at the famous painting as if you were within a few inches of the canvas! http://focus.louvre.fr/en
It’s better than actually being there. No crowds to fight. No tourists pushing and shoving and vying for a selfie with Mona Lisa. Yes, a selfie with Mona. I actually saw that. #headslap
The crowds that gather to see the Mona Lisa are usually intense, and, when I was there, the Louvre guards weren’t very motivated to move people along. So, it can be a challenge to get a good look at her. Plus the painting is small. Only 77 x 53 cm. So, check her out on the website. Lots of fun!
Leonardo was 55 when he finished painting her. It took him 4 years. When he did finish the painting, he carried it around with him for the last 12 years of his life. Obsessively. Some say he added little touches here and there to the painting during that time. You know, Lisa Gheradini was pregnant when she sat for the portrait, maybe that’s the reason for her mysterious smile.
She sits behind 3 inches of bulletproof glass and receives a minimum of 8 million visitors a year! Can’t wait to see her again.
Perhaps Addie and Blake will make a visit to see her as well…