Leonardo Da Vinci was a true renaissance man. He was a painter (most famously known for “Mona Lisa” and “The Last Supper”), a scientist and an inventor. He passed away over 500 years ago, but his work is still discussed and exhibited every day. Even so, galleries are still finding unique ways to display his artwork, such as the immersive experience London’s National Gallery has devised.
The exhibit recreates the original setting of the painting “The Virgin of the Rocks”, which was first displayed in a church in Milan. While that church has long since been destroyed, it has now been recreated at the Gallery. The gallery’s director, Gabriele Finaldi told The Gaurdian that “The idea is to use immersive experience and to use digital technology to explore this great masterpiece. We take the public on a journey through the spaces that Leonardo was familiar with, through the landscapes he was familiar with. His interest in light and optics, the church for which he painted the picture that no longer exists, and the altar piece, we make an evocation of the original setting of the painting”.
It took Da Vinci approximately 25 years to finish the painting, and it was completed around 1508. Thanks to high-tech tools, it was also discovered that Da Vinci had drastically changed the artwork throughout his time working on it, and both versions can be seen at the exhibition. As for the experience itself, you will get to see four distinct spaces to help you see into Da Vinci’s mind. From a painting studio to the re-imagined chapel, you will get to see the artwork the way Da Vinci himself saw it. The exhibition is on now, and runs until January 12th.