“Da Vinci wanted to put a beautiful woman in a dignified environment”

“Da Vinci wanted to put a beautiful woman in a dignified environment”
“Da Vinci wanted to put a beautiful woman in a dignified environment”

The Mona Lisathe most popular painting Leonardo da Vinci and… a whole source of mysteries and theories. Since the Italian genius painted it back at the beginning of the 16th century, scientists and art historians have dedicated themselves to studying the work to put an end to so many unanswered unknowns that surround it. One of the aspects of this painting that raises the most mystery is the landscape where the ‘smiling woman’ poses. Centuries of research that now a geologist seems to have solved. She is Ann Pizzorusso, Italian Renaissance researcher who was born in New York. Antena 3 Noticias has interviewed her to find out her theory about one of the ‘jewelry‘ of the Louvre Museum from Paris.

Since she was little, this geologist felt an overwhelming curiosity to study the Earth. This led her to immerse herself for several years in environmental cleanup work with the aim of knowing what the underground waters hide. However, when she moved to Italy, she began to feel “affinity” by Leonardo da Vinci. The reason? When studying his work he realized an aspect that to date has been very little investigated throughout history: “It turns out that in all his paintings recreate rocks or botanical plants and trees“, he points out. Furthermore, he was struck by the “precision” with which the landscape represented in his paintings appeared. And here could be the crux of the issue that concerns us.

There have been many theories that have swirled around the figure of the Mona Lisa for years and years. Apparently, the painting represents the portrait of Francesco del Giocondo’s wife, Lisa Gherardini, a young Florentine who belonged to a family originally from the Italian region of Tuscany. However, there are also hypotheses that state that the person who appears in the painting could be the artist’s mother, his lover or even himself – although only the most conspiracy-minded people point to this theory. What really catches Ann Pizzorusso’s attention is that they have expanded everything kind of ideas about the identity of the Mona Lisa but very few studies have thoroughly investigated the setting in which the woman poses.

This is the city where the Mona Lisa could be set

It is for this reason that the geologist has invested years of her life in knowing where da Vinci located his famous painting. It should be noted that the artist was a exceptional engineer and that one of his projects was based on “building a canal to link the city of Milan with that of Lecco“. The latter is where Pizzorusso believes that La Gioconda is set.

This Italian city located near the Lake Como, in the north of the country. The canal that the scientist talks about was never completed due to “rocks that could not be excavated”, a reason that led the artist to focus on that rock material and investigate it exhaustively. From there comes Pizzorusso’s theory about the place where da Vinci set his work.

Pizzorusso believes that the artist “had great respect for nature and art.” “If he was going to devote himself to painting, he knew that he had to be completely perfect and accurate“, he explains. 30 years ago that Ann Pizzorusso decided to inspect this rocky area, located near the Alps, in the Lombardy region. “I went to let myself go and met an alpine guide who took me to the mountains,” he says. The person she speaks of had some 10 books which dealt with the art of Leonardo da Vinci and in which some of the painter’s original designs appeared. The geologist says the experience was “fascinating” when she arrived in Lecco: “I just looked and said: ‘this is where the Mona Lisa was painted,'” she says.

Pizzorusso delved even deeper into the work of the Renaissance artist over the years after living that experience. He studied the areas surrounding the 460 bridges which approximately existed between 1503 and 1519 -years in which La Gioconda was painted- throughout Italy, but no other was like the one in the center of Lecco.

“There is a combination of several elements: the bridge, the river on which it is and the mountains behind,” says the geologist. Regarding the first, she highlights that it was “very common from Roman times to medieval times.” She further adds that Leonardo da Vinci visited him on several trips he made to northern Italy.

Another aspect that Pizzorusso has focused on is the rock formation of the mountain that would surround the Mona Lisa. “The geology he paints is limestone and that’s what mountains are made of, so everything fits together,” he explains. ç

The message that Leonardo da Vinci wanted to convey to the world with his work

The historian believes that Leonardo da Vinci intended to launch a message to the world by locating La Gioconda in Lecco. “I think she was trying to tell us that the Earth is very majestic,” she notes. She also claims that her intention was to put “a noble woman in a dignified environment.”

Da Vinci was an artist, philosopher, architect, sculptor, engineer, musician, urban planner, poet and anatomist, among other dedications. “He was also an excellent botanical because I started reading his botanical works and they were incredible. “I don’t know how I could be so good in so many areas,” he says.

But what many people do not know, in his opinion, is that the artist was also a good geologist because “he treated the landscape with great respect in his works.” That is why she is convinced that Lecco was the place that most represented her passion by nature.

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