See The Mona Lisa As It Was Maybe Intended: In 3-D

by Rachel Baker on May 3, 2014

WHAT?! but wait, what if the two Mona Lisa pictures were supposed to be in 3-D? Could da Vinci have created a device to view the two pictures as such? Follow the links in the story as well for more interesting articles about the Mona Lisa.

The mysteries of Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa, arguably one of the most famous paintings in the world, are never-ending. Who was this woman? Is she smiling? Did she once have eyebrows? The latest theory on the 16th-century masterpiece purports that da Vinci–a prolific inventor, scientist, and artist–was even more ahead of his time than we thought. According to a pair of experimental psychologists in Germany, Mona Lisa could be the world’s first 3-D image.

The Mona Lisa that attracts huge crowds at the Louvre is part of a pair. The other Mona Lisa, produced by his studio, is housed in the Prado Museum in Madrid. University of Bamberg psychologists Claus-Christian Carbon and Vera Hesslinger argue, in a paper published last year in the journal Perception and in a forthcoming article in Leonardo, that the ever-so-slight variation in perspective between the two images creates a 3-D effect when they’re combined. (Either break out your 3-D glasses to look at the image above, or try looking at it a little cross-eyed.)

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