and picture by Richard Moore
IS the most famous painting in the world and the most expensive
– valued at an estimated $760 million.
It was created between 1503 and 1506 by the Italian master
painter, sculptor, designer and creator Leonardo da Vinci.
The Mona Lisa, as she is known, is called La Gioconda in
Italian and La Joconde in French. It is a half-length portrait
of the wife of a wealthy Florentine silk merchant Francesco
name was Lisa and the Mona means my lady.
Vinci painted the work on white-painted poplar wood and
it measures 77cm by 53cm. Not really small, but many people
are surprised that it is not bigger.
Mona Lisa has been housed at the Louvre Museum in Paris
since 1797 and has had a pretty adventurous life for such
an elderly lady.
has been kidnapped – well, stolen, in 1911 by an Italian
Vincenozo Peruggia who wanted to take it back to Italy.
didn’t have a good year in 1956 when she was stoned – someone
threw a rock at her – and before that survived an acid attack.
have been other attacks, but now she sits snugly behind
bullet-proof glass staring in amusement at the absolute
chaos she causes among visitors to her gallery.
boy is it mayhem as more than six million people a year
pop in to catch a glimpse of her.
it is more like swarming by for those precious moments.
To get a longer view is a bit of a battle, that is if you
are lucky enough to avoid the cameras, iPads, mobile phones,
selfie sticks, selfie takers all holding their arms up as
if they are surrendering to someone.
It is an absolute bun fight and photographing the goings
on in the crowd is more fun that trying to elbow your way
to see Mona Lisa.
beautiful ladies can be just too popular.