• THE DEN

5 Iconic Paintings!

Updated: Sep 6

|THE DEN|


Mona Lisa


Also known as La Gioconda, Mona Lisa is Leonardo Da Vinci's best-known work and the most famous painting in the world. Today the painting is in the Louvre in Paris and its history began between 1503 and 1519 in Florence, the Italian city considered the cradle of the Renaissance, where Da Vinci painted this masterpiece. It is said to be a portrait of Lisa Gherardini, wife of Francesco del Giocondo, but it has also been rumored to be of Da Vinci's mother, Caterina, or even a self- portrait of the painter.


The fame of this painting is not only from the technique used or its beauty but also from the mysteries that surround it. Like who is the subject and why is she smiling? Her enigmatic smile has seduced people for centuries. In addition, the theft in 1911, the reproductions made, the numerous works of art inspired by the painting, and the existing parodies all contribute to making it the best art of all time.




Starry Night


This masterpiece was painted by Van Gogh in 1889 in the Saint-Rémy Asylum, where he was imprisoned towards the end of his life. Indeed, the canvas seems to reflect his tumultuous post-impressionist authorial state at the time, when the night sky comes to life with swirls and orbs of frantically applied brushwork, springing from the good and evil of his personal demons and his astonishment at nature.


The artist commented in one of his letters to his brother Theo, that this was the vision of the city he saw from his window at dawn. The large, white star that the artist calls the "Morning Star" is, according to experts, the planet Venus.



Guernica


The first thing that surprises about Guernica is its extraordinary size. It is 3.49 meters high by 7.77 meters wide which makes it one of the largest paintings painted by an artist from Spain. Inspired by the bombing of Guernica, Spain, during the Spanish Civil War, Pablo Picasso completed this most famous piece in 1937.


This piece was originally commissioned by the Spanish government and intended to depict the suffering of war and ultimately stand as a symbol of peace. The canvas was kept for a long time at the MoMA in New York, according to the painter's wish, and returned to Spain in 1981.



Las Meninas


It is one of the largest works by painter Diego Velazquez, the Spanish artist of the Golden Age. “In Las Meninas he put the greatest effort to create a composition that is both complex and believable, that would convey the sensation of life and reality and at the same time enclose a dense network of meanings” they say.


This oil on canvas from 1656 shows a daily scene from the court of Felipe IV. In it, the boundaries between painting and reality are blurred and time is suspended without precedent and the artist himself appears within the work. It is currently exhibited in the Prado Museum.



The Birth of Venus


Botticelli's The Birth of Venus was the first non-religious full- length nude in antiquity generally thought to have been painted in the mid-1480s. It has long been suggested that Botticelli was commissioned to paint the work by the Medici family of Florence, specifically Lorenzo di Pierfrancesco de Medici under the influence of his cousin Lorenzo de Medici.


It measures 1.80 meters high and 2.75 meters long. In the painting, Venus is seen being carried to earth in a giant shell by the wind gods Zephyrus and Aura while the personification of spring waits on earth in a cloak.