Australian artist Dorothy Gauvin asks Has Playful Leonardo Left Us a Clue?
It’s happening for me again, an ‘Emperor’s New Clothes’ moment. This time it’s an idea that fits within my own field of Painting. Yet this time, I’m completely at a loss as to how to test it. You see, it’s about a mysterious work recently identified as by that towering genius and trickster, Leonardo Da Vinci.
Since it’s no longer physically possible for me to travel, so as to go to see the original, I can only muse on printed reproductions of the painting titled ‘Salvator Mundi.’
In every report I’ve read, experts refer to an object held in the left hand of the Jesus figure as a ‘globe’ or as a ‘sphere’ of crystal, representing the world. To my eye, this is clearly a round lens, such as that which is a component of the camera obscura, which Leonardo described in his notebooks and is now thought to have utilized in making the Shroud of Turin.
Can this crystal object be the playful clue he left – out in plain sight – to another of his cryptic jokes on us all?
Shhh! Don’t tell Picknett and Prince. They’ll need to revise their book once again.