Once again PDM has provided a great variety of resources to consider - however -
"Can we or can we not say, with some degree of certainty, that these paintings represent something very close to Leonardo's original? I am no expert, but I do not see why not. Other copies are considered to be close to the original.
With respect - does this not beg the question:
If all of these "very close to Leonardo's original" copies of "The Last Supper" are faithful copies or restorations - then why the dispair among the high ranking art experts previously quoted by this writer that there is nothing which serves as a credible model for restorative purposes that is believed to actually represent what Leonardo originally painted ??
Compare carefully all of the reference materials and quotations provided by PDM with this writer's references and quotations in Post #348096.
Note that while the links provided by PDM are from responsible sources and all claim in different ways that whatever work to which they refer is an accurate representation of Leonardo's "The Last Supper" as he originally painted it - the fact remains that none
of those sources quote art experts of the reputation and status to substantiate their claims comparable to those provided by this writer in Post #348096 - which clearly document the fact that from what remains of Leonardo's "The Last Supper", no restoration of it can be said to accurately reflect more than ten percent (at best) of what he originally painted.
Let us ask the question in another way....
To assure fealty to Leonardo in restoring "The Last Supper" as he painted it, if all these copies referenced by PDM are such close representations of what he originally painted - why not just consult Giampietrino's copy and/or journey to the Tongerlo Abby and/or compare any other copy from the period of these early copies (or later, including restorations) and authorize the commission to restore what Leonardo originally painted to be based upon them?
Why – if all of these copies and restorations are so accurate – why aren’t they good enough to merit confidence that the end result of any restoration would be so close to what Leonardo originally painted
that any deficiency would be negligible as far as the art and historical-preservation world is concerned ??
The answer is simple.
To the art restoration authority and expert who was placed in charge and believed it was possible to return the painting to near its original state, to the consultant for the Louvre and a Leonardo scholar, to the Director of Artwatch, UK, and others not cited, there simply are no known copies of Leonardo's "The Last Supper" (regardless of age or condition) that are considered reliable representations of his original work of sufficient merit to be used in reconstructing either his intentions or restoring what he actually painted.
I have no idea whether or not Leonardo was portraying the beloved disciple as a female, but I wouldn't discount it. Yes, he painted effeminate-looking young men, but why should the model for beloved disciple look like the model for the virgin Mary? Anyway, whatever Leonardo thought about the matter, that doesn't mean that he was correct.
(Color added by this writer to create a specific reference point)
Apparently some misunderstanding has occurred regarding what this writer said in asking the question "could the gender of the disciple in question be buried in Leonardo's notes?" (paraphrased).
Please review the preceding post on this point.
This question was not
meant to be understood as if this writer was suggesting Leonardo said something in his notes that conflicted with the NT account of "The Last Supper", the question was to position the possiblity of an answer
as forthcoming in a future post.Do Leonardo's personal notes reveal his intentions as to what was going to be painted, gender-specific, when he discusses how the disciple in question will appear in his painting ??
...and that answer
...is still going to be reserved for a another post when time permits.