Various Mona Lisa Controversies
The Mona Lisa painting is one of the most discussed paintings in human history, and countless art historians have all had their own theories about it. There are so many misconceptions about the Mona Lisa painting that most art history majors have to learn about those misconceptions in detail before they can even get to truly discussing the painting, or the misconceptions are going to distract them from an accurate analysis of the painting.
Did the Mona Lisa Originally Have Eyebrows?
Some people will hear discussions of whether or not the Mona Lisa is supposed to be a female version of Leonardo da Vinci himself. However, some of the controversies are about specific details of the painting, such as the question of whether or not the Mona Lisa was originally painted with eyebrows. The Mona Lisa painting as it is represented today depicts a woman with no eyebrows. Some people contend that the painting has been damaged over the years, and the Mona Lisa was originally intended to have eyebrows.
There is still controversy about this to this day, but there is some very solid evidence that the Mona Lisa did originally have eyebrows. Advanced scanning technology has made it easier than ever before to successfully detect the fine details of paintings, and there is now evidence of a faint trace of a left eyebrow on the Mona Lisa.
The remainder of the eyebrows have eroded over the years. The Mona Lisa is a painting that has been restored on multiple occasions, and the restoration experts are not going to be able to do a perfect job. They’re going to make mistakes on occasions, or they’re going to arrive on the scene too late in order to preserve some details of the original painting. It seems that the Mona Lisa’s eyebrows were lost to history just as surely as other artistic details.
There’s even some evidence that the Mona Lisa painting had eyelashes as well. It is possible that restoration experts unintentionally removed them or obscured them further than they should have been. After generations of restoration experts doing that, the Mona Lisa painting ended up with no eyebrows and no eyelashes at all. Incidentally, this also cuts into the hypothesis that the Mona Lisa figure is a feminized portrait of Leonardo da Vinci. The lack of eyelashes and eyebrows were not intended to create a more androgynous appearance, which is what some people have contended. They were simply signs that the painting itself has degraded.
The Implications of Mona Lisa’s Eyebrows
It is interesting to think that when the Mona Lisa painting was new, it had eyelashes and eyebrows. A time traveler would immediately recognize the new Mona Lisa painting as being damaged. It is also interesting to note that some interpretations of a piece of artwork can be based entirely off of damages to that piece of artwork. Naturally, many people are also going to want to imagine what the Mona Lisa would look like with intact eyelashes and eyebrows.