The Last Supper painting is a masterpiece by the legendary artist Leonardo da Vinci. The actual painting was made on hard plaster, which has been restored several times.
The Last Supper was painted by Leonardo da Vinci in a rather short period of about three years i.e., from 1495 to 1498 AD. A span of three years is considered to be short, because the painting was a masterpiece from the point of view of human expression. It was considered to be a very short time even by da Vinci himself, because he had a habit of procrastinating his work. The painting today is preserved in the dining hall of the Convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie in the city of Milan, Italy.
Leonardo da Vinci wanted to make the painting as detailed as possible, as he wanted to depict human expressions and emotions on the faces of the characters. This masterpiece is painted on a layer of dry plaster. He chose to paint it on dry plaster, because he needed more time to paint accurate expressions, which was impossible on wet plaster, as he would get a very short span of time. The Last Supper cannot be considered as a fresco in the real sense of the term, as a typical fresco of the Renaissance period refers to a painting done on wet plaster.
The Last Supper, painted on dry plaster is actually Leonardo da Vinci's experimental technique of painting. However, his technique is considered to be a failure, as it has not withstood the test of time. Before starting the painting, da Vinci coated the wall with a layer of resin, which is a combination of pitch and mastic. He also used chalk in the process of coating. To seal off the painting he used tempera. This allowed da Vinci to highlight the details of human emotion in the painting.The life of the Last Supper painting has been considerably extended due to the latest restorations. The analysis of this painting by Dan Brown in The Da Vinci Code has created a stir about the identity of Leonardo da Vinci, and also about his works as an artist. Even today, this painting remains to be a masterpiece, and a one-of-a-kind piece of art. Sadly, mankind may not be able to hoard this treasure for a long time.
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