20 Stories

Old Masters' Paint Contained Protein—Likely Intentionally

Researchers evaluate the benefits of adding egg yolk to oil paint

(Newser) - If Leonardo da Vinci and Rembrandt were alive today, they'd likely be wringing their hands over egg prices with the rest of us. That's because they may have intentionally added egg yolk to their oil paints, and a new study published Tuesday in Nature Communications tries to get...

If AI Is Right, a New Raphael Painting Has Been Found

Quest to prove painting's origin continues 3 decades after it was spotted in antiques shop

(Newser) - A cabinetmaker from Chicago was on vacation in England in 1995 when he spotted a painting tucked behind an armoire in an antiques shop. Anthony Ayers, an amateur artist, couldn't afford the $30,000 painting, which the shop owner suggested was from the Renaissance, but he also couldn't...

It Was Hanging in Her Kitchen. She Found Out It's Worth Millions
It Was Hanging
in Her Kitchen.
She Found Out It's
Worth Millions
in case you missed it

It Was Hanging in Her Kitchen. She Found Out It's Worth Millions

Elderly French woman's 'Christ Mocked' by Renaissance painter Cimabue could go for $6.6M

(Newser) - An elderly French woman had the painting hanging above a hot plate in her kitchen, thinking it was just an old piece of art. When she finally got curious enough to get it appraised, she found out it was indeed old—and extremely valuable. That's because, per an old-masters...

Secret Room Where Michelangelo Hid, Sketched to Be Opened

It has been closed since its discovery in 1975 to keep the artwork safe

(Newser) - For two months in 1530, Michelangelo hid in a secret underground room beneath the Medici Chapels, "fill[ing] the walls with drawings" to forget his fears, as he later recalled. He had been commissioned by the Medicis, the most powerful family in Florence, to build the chapels—a mausoleum for...

Woman Found Buried With Husband's Heart on Her Coffin

In a 'phenomenon that had until now not been noted'

(Newser) - Love never fails, and now researchers say they've discovered a burial ritual ostensibly designed to allow a couple's love to persist forever. Reporting in the journal PLOS One , they say that French noblewoman Louise de Quengo, who died at the age of 65 in 1656, was buried in...

Green Pigment a Telltale Clue in Art-Fraud Case: Suit

'St. Jerome' contains modern pigment: Sotheby's

(Newser) - St. Jerome was said to have been painted by an Italian Renaissance master and was displayed at Vienna's national gallery before it was sold at auction in 2012 for $842,500. The buyer apparently overpaid. Sotheby's now says the artwork is a fake, not painted by Parmigianino in...

Unrestorable Renaissance Painting Proves Them Wrong

Giorgio Vasari's 'The Last Supper' is restored 50 years after flood

(Newser) - Renaissance artist Giorgio Vasari's The Last Supper was so badly damaged by floodwaters a half-century ago that it was considered beyond repair. Today, however, it is once again on display in all its glory, the Art Newspaper reports. The 96-square-foot painting, commissioned by a cloister of Italian nuns in...

Painting Likely by Renaissance Great Ignored for Generations

Art historian convinced 500-year-old painting is by Raphael

(Newser) - High up in a corner of a 300-year-old house in Scotland, unnoticed, hung a painting by a Renaissance master worth more than $25 million. It's getting a lot more attention now. The Guardian reports the painting by Raphael, famous Italian artist and ninja turtle namesake, was discovered by art...

Rare Work by Renaissance Master Found in Kansas City

A small museum has mostly kept it in storage for the past 80 years

(Newser) - Last displayed more than a decade ago and kept mostly in storage at a small museum in Kansas City is not the treatment you'd expect for a rare painting by a Renaissance master. But the Kansas City Star reports that's exactly what's happened to The Temptation of ...

On Da Vinci's To-Do List: 'Find Human Skull'

Never-before-seen page of notebook to go on display next month

(Newser) - A never-before-seen page of Leonardo da Vinci's famed notebook is set to go on display next month at the Queen's Gallery at Buckingham Palace, and it represents an interesting look into the genius' mind—because it's his to-do list. Scholars believe the list was written right before...

Louvre Begs for Painting Cash
 Louvre Begs for Painting Cash 

Louvre Begs for Painting Cash

Public urged to help keep national treasure in France

(Newser) - For the first time in its 217-year history, the Louvre is asking the French public to help it buy a painting—and the French aren't happy about. The museum is a million euros short of the 4 million it needs to buy the 16th-century oil painting Three Graces, and it...

Family Kept Michelangelo Painting Behind the Couch

Buffalo's Kober family called it 'the Mike'

(Newser) - They called the painting “The Mike,” because legend had it that it was an original Michelangelo painting—but the Kober family didn’t really believe it. When their kids knocked it off the wall with a tennis ball, they wrapped it up and stashed it behind the couch,...

Italians Believe They've Found Caravaggio's Bones

400-year-old mystery may be solved

(Newser) - Italian researchers say they're 85% sure bones found in a Tuscan church are the remains of Renaissance wildman Caravaggio. The celebrity painter, known for his boozing, brawling, and womanizing, died in 1610. His last days have long been a mystery, with some speculating that was assassinated for religious reasons. The...

Bad-Boy Caravaggio Hotter Than Michelangelo
 Bad-Boy Caravaggio 
 Hotter Than Michelangelo 

Bad-Boy Caravaggio Hotter Than Michelangelo

'Antihero' with no personal records is 'perfect Rorschach' for out time

(Newser) - Watch out, Michelangelo—it appears that the depraved, scandalous, and murderous Italian painter Caravaggio resonates with modern audiences a tad more than the paragon of Renaissance beauty. That’s the opinion of a historian who surveyed scholarly matter on both painters over the last 50 years—books, papers, catalogs—and...

Mona Lisa Suffered Sky-High Cholesterol

Pathologist identifies sick subjects of the Renaissance

(Newser) - Leonardo da Vinci's model for the Mona Lisa was smiling despite some serious health problems, according to an Italian pathologist applying his knowledge to Renaissance painting. Professor Vito Franco of the University of Palermo says a tumor on her hand and apparent buildups of fatty acids around her eyes show...

Met Bares 1st Work by Michelangelo, 12

'St. Anthony Tormented by Demons' amazed young apprentice's master

(Newser) - A work believed to be Michelangelo's first painting has made its American debut at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the New York Times reports. St. Anthony Tormented by Demons, a customized copy of a German print, is thought to have been painted in 1487 when Michelangelo was a 12-year-old apprentice...

Italy Quake Caused Massive Damage to Medieval Heritage

Ancient churches, castles in Abruzzo suffer serious quake damage

(Newser) - The 6.3 earthquake in Italy yesterday caused massive damage to what had been one of Europe's best-preserved medieval cities, ANSA reports. Large sections of a famous 13th-century basilica and three other historic churches in the mountain city of L'Aquila have crumbled. An ornate 1584 gate to the community has...

Met Unveils X-Rated Renaissance

New exhibition includes 16th-century porn alongside masterpieces

(Newser) - Art and Love in Renaissance Italy, a new exhibition at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art, comes with a warning to spectators: parental discretion advised. Mixed in with decorous portraits of noblemen are 16th-century pornographic images, dirty books, and other obscene artifacts. For Wall Street Journal critic James Gardner,...

Madonna Gets a 10-Year Facelift
Madonna Gets a 10-Year Facelift

Madonna Gets a 10-Year Facelift

Italian lab restores Raphael's landmark painting with cutting edge techniques

(Newser) - After a 10-year facelift, an Italian Renaissance landmark is finally ready for its unveiling. Raphael’s Madonna of the Goldfinch underwent extensive renovations that included CAT scans and X-rays, Reuters reports. A Florentine lab removed coverings by early restorers who saved the work, which was smashed in a house collapse...

David Could Crumble: Engineer
 David Could Crumble: Engineer 

David Could Crumble: Engineer

Years of traffic, tourism put Michelangelo's marble masterpiece at risk

(Newser) - Michelangelo’s famed statue of David is in danger of collapse and must be stabilized, an Italian engineering professor tells ANSA. Failure isn’t imminent, though a major earthquake could topple the Renaissance masterwork on display in Florence. Small cracks in the statue, thought to have emerged during the 500...

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