100 Days of Art History Jinjins


Mona Lisa

Wow, after 2.5 years I finally got to the last entry. Of course, it had to be the one I started with--the Mona Lisa.

I don't have much to say about the painting itself, or Da Vinci, or the model. This painting is so famous that it's basically a symbol that represents Art itself. Its reputation precedes it, so I didn't do any extra research on it before diving in to my master copy. My one fun fact is that Da Vinci used a technique called "sfumato", which means smoke, and refers to the way he blurred a lot of his edges. I had fun emulating that this go-around.

It was strange to work on this entry knowing it was the last one. It didn't really feel special. At the same time I knew how far I'd come since the beginning. It was surreal. Between that first Mona Lisa and this one, I'd gotten a new job, gotten engaged, and lived through the beginning of the Coronavirus pandemic.

I'd learned so much over the course of the project, both about art technique and art history, and it gave me so much time to think about life, society, and human expression. Not to mention the space to explore complex topics around femininity and Orientalism. I'm so grateful to have had this experience and proud of what I've accomplished. If this is the first image you're clicking on, check out all the rest to see more of this journey.

My last 10 entries were redos of paintings I'd attempted at the beginning so that I could compare progress and give the original artworks their proper due. You can see my first swing at the Mona Lisa at entry 1.

Reference image is from Wikipedia. The painting is now in The Louvre.

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