Some of the best artistic troves of Milan could be seen by touring the Church of San Maurizio. Here you can gaze upon da Vinci’s world-famous ‘The Last Supper’ and the interior majesties of the Church of San Maurizio.

To create this masterpiece, Leonardo exhaustively researched and developed a number of preparatory sketches. Leonardo abandoned the conventional method of fresco painting or the method of painting on the “dry” wall of the refectory. Traces of silver and gold foils are found which testify to the artist’s willingness to make the figures in a certain style. After it was finished, environmental factors led to the deterioration of the fresco, but the painting has been restored throughout the centuries.

 photoPhoto by Andrew and Annemarie

With the help of a guide, you can find and explore Milan’s beaten paths, including the Church of Santa Maria and the enigmatic LOVE sculpture, all while tuning in to insightful commentary.

The most recent restoration was completed in 1999 where several methods were utilized also to remove traces of paint applied in prior attempts to reestablish the fresco and also to restore the colors.

Everybody understands the painting depicts Jesus’ last meal with his apostles before he was seized and crucified. But da Vinci desired to capture the instant just after Jesus shows that someone among the apostles will betray him. He also wanted to capture the reactions of shock and anger among them. In the interpretation of da Vinci, the moment occurs just as Jesus reaches some unleavened bread.

Popular belief holds that each apostle was based on an actual person da Vinci met. In choosing the face of Judas, the fifth apostle from the left of Jesus, da Vinci scoured Milan’s jails looking for the ideal criminal.

 photoPhoto by Andrew and Annemarie

If you look closely, you’ll find that attention is directed to Christ. It’s arguably the greatest example of one-point perspective.

The Last Supper was a very popular theme for artists and Catholics. Throughout history, the painting has been replicated several times. But two copies of the Last Supper are known to have been made. These were most likely created by da Vinci’s assistants, and the copies almost the same size and appearance as the first painting. And they are just as well-preserved. One copy is housed among the collection of the Royal Academy of Arts in London . The other can be found in Switzerland, at the Church of St. Ambrogio.

People today view the painting ‘with sighs of sadness.’ Due to its peeling and deteriorating state, it may be hard to believe that the painting will still be intact in your next visit.


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