Saturday, June 30, 2018

Leonardo's earliest surviving work? Self-portrait as Archangel Gabriel unveiled

By Maev Kennedy
This portrait of the Archangel Gabriel could be Leonardo da Vinci's first ever painting, Italian scholars claim
A small square tile with the profile image of a beautiful angel has been claimed not only as the earliest surviving work by Leonardo da Vinci, but as his own self-portrait as the Archangel Gabriel. If genuine the tile has survived miraculously unbroken for more than 500 years, since the 18-year-old artist made it in 1471. The claim – dismissed out of hand by the world renowned Leonardo expert Martin Kemp – is certain to spark academic debate. Scarcely a year passes without the claimed discovery of a previously overlooked work by Leonardo, and argument still rages over the authenticity of the heavily restored Salvator Mundi which became the most expensive painting in the world when it sold for more than $450m (£340m), at a Christie’s auction in New York last winter. [More]
Small tile bearing an image of the Archangel Gabriel, which art experts in Rome claim is the oldest surviving work by Leonardo da Vinci. Photograph: Press Office Handout/EPA