March 2, 2011

After the Mona Lisa's Theft

monalisa-aftertheft.jpgPhotographs taken of the front and back of the Mona Lisa's empty frame after it's theft (the frame was abandoned in a staircase during the Peruggia's getaway).

In 1911 an Italian named Vincenzo Peruggia managed to steal the Mona Lisa from the Louvre. The Museum and the police were mystified. "La Gioconda is gone. That is all I can say. So far we have not the slightest clue as to the perpetrator of the crime," reported the Assistant Curator of the Louvre to the NYTimes.

Peruggia secreted the painting to his small apartment two blocks from the museum and kept it hidden for almost two years. I often wonder if, during those years, he kept the painting locked up in the secret false bottom of his trunk (where it was eventually found), or if, sometimes, he would take it out and and hang it while he made himself dinner and enjoyed a glass a wine. I love the mental image of Peruggia alone at table breaking bread with Mona Lisa's eyes always on him.

Related: Much more Mona Lisa esoterica can found on The Missing Piece. Vanished Smile: The Mysterious Theft of Mona Lisa" is a good book on the theft. Read this NY Times article from 1911 about the theft.

posted at 12:28 PM by raul

Filed under: art

TAGS: art (15) louvre (1) mona lisa (2)

Comments:

03/03/11 10:27 AM

I love the image of the empty frames, and your speculative questions. When I last saw it there were many women staring at the painting as if they all had the same mysterious question in their mind:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/fundy/3253423165/in/set-72157622624614389/

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