The Discovery & Restoration of Leonardo da Vinci’s Long-Lost Painting “Salvator Mundi” | Robb Report

The Discovery & Restoration of Leonardo da Vinci’s Long-Lost Painting “Salvator Mundi” | Robb Report


(soft choir music) – And so, ladies and gentlemen, we move to the Leonardo Da
Vinci, the Salvator Mundi, the masterpiece by Leonardo
of Christ the savior, previously in the collections
of three kings of England. (soaring instrumental music) – [Auctioneer] Who will give me 120? 130 million, 140 million is bid. At 140 million. – I always thought it would be the most expensive work of art ever sold. It’s incredible and unbelievably rare. Nothing conjures with
the name of Leonardo. We had tens of thousands of
people on three continents line up for hours in some cases, and people were tremendously
excited to see it. – I had a relationship
with the Salvator Mundi, and he had one with me. This was an incredibly powerful image, and it was like nothing
that I’ve ever worked on and I believe like nothing
that’s ever been painted. I’ve known Robert Simon
for a very long time, and Robert had purchased the painting. Some time, I think it
was in April of 2005, he called and asked if he
could bring a picture over that he had just purchased. And I asked Bob if he wanted
me to go ahead and clean it. It had very recent kind
of sticky varnish on it and some sloppy retouching
that also looked quite recent. – It was heavily overpainted, and it was still thought to be a copy, and it was sold for a
couple thousand dollars at an estate sale in Louisiana. It was found by a man named Alex Parish who then sold a share
of it to Robert Simon who is a very distinguished authority on Italian Renaissance paintings. Thought he must be crazy
when he said he thought he might have found a Leonardo Da Vinci, and they started having it cleaned, and at that point the quality of it really began to come through,
and they got quite excited and they brought in Dianne Modestini, who’s a very distinguished
restorer in New York. – I was not thinking,
“This is by Leonardo.” I was just concentrating
on what had to be done to make the picture legible, not to lose any of the original. It just didn’t enter my mind. It probably would have interfered with my ability and my
freedom to work on it and to develop kind of a
working relationship with it. We noticed that the panel
itself had a very large crack that ran the whole length of
the panel from top to bottom. It was a curve that went
right around the side of the Salvator Mundi’s head. And that was a kind of
horrifying thing to discover. The other parts of the painting
were preserved perfectly. – I had already been hearing rumors from Leonardo scholars who had seen it who were sort of hinting that they’d seen this kind of amazing thing. A consensus developed over time that this was, really
was this lost original that had been thought to have
disappeared for centuries. By the time he paints it around 1500, Leonardo is almost 50. He is the most famous artist in the world. There is an assumption
that it must have been for a very important patron. He used very, very precious materials, and he finishes it, which
he doesn’t do that often. He starts a lot and
abandons it along the way, but he finishes this. First absolutely known history of it is about a hundred years later when it’s in the collection
of Charles I of England. He dies hugely in debt,
and the Crown decides to give away much of his art collection in repayment of his debts. It’s given to a mason, it
would be the equivalent of an architect or a
builder, named John Stone in repayment for this debt. And nine years later when
the monarchy is restored and Charles II becomes king,
Parliament passes an act that says basically, “All
you people who’ve had debts “from the king and got stuff
from us, give it back.” And so it enters the
collection of Charles II. It then descends to his younger brother and successor, James II. His mistress is a woman
named Catherine Sedley, and they have a child together, and she inherits it from him. And then she marries the
First Duke of Buckingham who builds Buckingham
House, which eventually by their heirs is sold and
is now Buckingham Palace. And when the house is sold to the crown, the contents of it are sold
off at an auction in 1763. And at that point it just
completely disappears. We have no idea what happened. It’s sold as by Leonardo
but for a very small amount of money, and so it’s probable that even by that point the painting had been quite heavily overpainted. – I worked on it off
and on for five years. The cleaning was really
not particularly revelatory because the head had been
completely repainted. There was a beard. It looks quite grotesque. Wherever there were damages they just made this kind of red beard. But all of that was done, I don’t know, in the not-so-distant past,
and it came off very easily. – [Auctioneer] 286 million,
will you give me 290? I thought so. (crowd gasps) 300 million. – From 1763 we have no
idea from that point on what happens to it. Until the end of the 19th Century when it reappears and it’s sold to a very eminent British
collector, Francis Cook. But it’s sold as a copy
or a follower of Leonardo, and you can see it’s heavily overpainted. It was sort of just made
to look more masculine. I think it was probably
seen as more fitting by the 19th Century. And it remains in the Cook collection where nobody pays much
attention to it until 1958 when it’s sold at Sotheby’s
in London for 45 pounds. It’s bought by an American we think, and it ends up in collections in America until 2005 when it’s sold for, again, a very, very small amount of money as a copy in Louisiana. – It wasn’t until I was
at the very, very end of the restoration and
there was one retouch around the mouth which
was extremely difficult. I had a book about
technical investigations of the Mona Lisa, detailed reproductions, and one was just of the Mona Lisa’s mouth, so I actually cut the page out of the book and tacked it to my easel. That was the moment when
I had to say to myself, “Of course it’s by Leonardo because “nobody else paints this way.” This picture is a paradigm of everything that he knew technically about painting and much of what he thought about time, eternity, and the cosmos. It wasn’t just a portrait of Jesus Christ painted for the king. This was something that
became very important to him. – For those of you following online, you may not have heard it. The bid was 350, was
called on the telephone at 350 million the
Leonardo Salvator Mundi. – [Dianne] The fact that it went for so much money will protect it. – 370 million dollars,
ladies and gentlemen. 400 million. (crowd gasps) – I only care about it being protected and it being one of the
most important expressions in paint that Leonardo
left us about his thinking. So the price doesn’t matter. – In my dreams it’s sort of almost exactly what I thought it would sell for. I always thought it would
make the biggest price ever. So it was a trophy of the greatest rarity. – Leonardo Salvator Mundi
selling here at Christie’s. 400 million dollars is the
bid, and the piece is sold. (crowd cheers and applauds)

100 thoughts on “The Discovery & Restoration of Leonardo da Vinci’s Long-Lost Painting “Salvator Mundi” | Robb Report”

  1. Kings and queens had these famous arts paint Jesus and the history of the Bible in there liking ,which is in the favor of white people because white peoples where in power .and these people in high places !wanted people of color to believe white people where superior to people of color

  2. What I want to know is why it didn't go straight to a museum. It's a Da Vinci, it belongs with the other the paintings he created.

  3. An amazing, amazing story and painting. I often ask people if you could have a long dinner with five people, past or present (not family, of course that's a given)…….who would you choose???? Leonardo is the first on my list.

  4. Don't get so fascinated, you better watch this video analysis before you open your mouth in Ohhh
    https://youtu.be/GhzpRYP48is

  5. Painting:  Yah man…this crystal thing is AWESOME dudes! Just hold it for a while man,it's just so righteous…you'll zone-out dude!  ( That's what I get from this painting…it says nothing of significance at all to me, other than 'Mickey' was in a hurry to get paid…it looks…like a simpleton enchanted by a glass-sphereI get more from 'stick-figures' of mom/dad/stinky little brother but I love him anyway/'Russell' our dog/'Cheezy' our cat/and me' from an 8-year-old girl' than a thousand-years of looking at that insipid painting of 'Salvator'…because the little girl is drawing from her heart…and no price can ever buy it

  6. I get goosebumps looking at this painting ….this is just unbelievable…those eyes are alive and talking to the world 💖💖💖

  7. This isn't a Da Vinci… The dude never ever painted faces straight on. I've heard at best it was made in his studio by one of his students and he may have done some of the hair.

  8. this proves to me that the rich are as ignorant as they are wealthy. they are blinded from the truth. you spend millions of dollars on a representation of a mans fallacious image of the christ, instead of using your own judgment and rational…… FOOLS. If only da Vinci had actually read the Bible. you talk about a christ that has done so much to save your wretched souls, but you have the audacity to depict him as the milk faced, red haired, European bastard you so claim to have authored. how about instead of buying a piece of dissonant art-you actually help the region of the world where Jesus was from. maybe there is a message behind the story that needs more of your attention? what are the parts of the earth that need the most help? Middle East and Africa…..hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm….very ironic isn't it…….450 MILLION!!!!!! FUCK YOU! If I was anywhere near that painting I would light that shit on fire.

  9. Idk… 400M for a painting? These people are like: "Worth"… but 400M is enough money to build 400 first world schools or 4000 third world ones. I am an artist myself but I think perhaps these people need to get their priority's in line, just imo. Just guessing but I bet Leonardo would burn it himself if he knew what people were paying for it.

  10. I had just read somebody's comment, calling the globe in His hand a "crystal" ball….. I was led to comment on the persons post…. And then I was led to put my comment separately, so that it may help others…. So here was my comment:

    If you use the Bible to describe what is in his hand, you will find words that show the globe, is the heavens and earth…. And Im more wanting to call it a "snow" globe…. (Insteade of a "crystal ball")
    Why?
    Because, it is written, there should come a time of great shaking of the heavens and earth…..
    If You enlarge the globe itself you will see a small white heart…. With a highlighted line running to his first finger… Meaning One Love and pointing to the heart, meaning love up, in the heavens. He is pointing to Love.

    When using the Bible as a refference…and the backward writting of the Hebrew people, look at the 3 white dots and you will see they are a backwards 7… A number meaning God. God is old testament. and this Great Shaking would come from God, for it is written of within the old testament. However, Jesus Christ has the Heavens and Earth in his hand now, pointing to love…. Also if compared to a "snow" globe, snow is in the "winter time"
    And Jesus reminds us, telling us to pray that the end doesnt come in the winter, and the days will be shortend for the elects sake.

    You can also look at his other hand, and enlarge it and you will find the shadow of the Red Sea backwards….what is to the right of the red sea? (Remember you are looking at it backwards, so look to the left) It would be Israel.
    And his ring finger is touching Israel, meaning He is married to Israel.
    These are just a few things I found within a short time…..
    ALWAYS REMEMBER, when dealing with Spiritual things, use Gods words as your guide……🙂

  11. Richies doing rich people's rich stuff. It's not art, it's a place to launder money or stash cash from the government.

  12. The Art world was clamoring for anything Davinci, The Art world created a convincing fake and made lots of money 💰 selling it

  13. The action house & snoby art dealers decide a painting worth. They make people more intersted by saying there is secret messages hidden in the paintings. It's BS it's a beautiful painting relic. By a man people think of as a god. Leo stoled ideas claimed them as his own. He taught students 2 paint & some of the wonderful paintings by Leo were actually done or finished by a trusted student.

  14. An image of Christ, painted by a European Christian but now sold to a Muslim and probably will never return to Europe.
    Nice….

  15. It should be better if people start to know more about Jesus and the big surprise they will have when they will see him in person. Pretty soon.

  16. I love how Dianne talked in an almost whisper like tone. Its almost like she thought that Leonardo da Vinci's spirit was also present in the room to hear her speak.

  17. Amazing painting and an amazing story of a treasure discovered for petty cash, and after restoration sold for an amazing $450+ million. Unbelievable, but true.

  18. The art market is a big scam – for tax write offs, and money laundering.

    Yes, it's a beautiful painting, but 400 million? That's just sick.

  19. I’m an admirer of Leonardo but he’s not my favorite. This has to be one of his works that makes me reevaluate that slightly. What really got me in this video was the way the restorer speaks. She does those little inhales almost like punctuation when she speaks. And it reminds me of my Grammy. Who taught me how to draw, and about art. She was an artist her entire life. This video shockingly made me warm and fuzzy all about art all over again. Appreciate the suggestion, YouTube.

  20. 450 MILLION?!?!? How about that Saudi Prince feeds the starving people and babies of the world. Yes excellent painting but come on!

  21. If people right now is truly pushing for EQUALITY, then why are his paintings cost millions compared to others? Painted by a human just like you and I with the same anatomy. It seems that people just likes to hype and price things at a certain amount and if someone is willing to buy it, that is what we call business. Wake up humans.. wake up! Give the freakin' millions to kids instead that don't even have food on their plate. Too materialistic in a material world. SMH. You can argue, but it is what is is. #materialworld

  22. I have a real problem with a painting like this, a true masterpiece, being in a private collector's possession. At least it is on loan to the Louvre, for now… I feel it should belong to a museum, to the public, not a single individual.

  23. This illustrates everything wrong with modern society, I am an artist, I LOVE art. However the idea that in a world with the poverty, hunger, disease, someone paid hundreds of millions for a few swirls of paint… Jesus wept…

  24. It is terribly sad that a painting sold for so much money when the world is so full of need
    Trinkets in life we can’t take with us when it’s over…. 🤐

  25. I think there is something wrong with the Salvator Mundi painting. The face isn't balanced. What I mean is that the left side doesn't fit the right side and/or the right side doesn't fit the left side. To me it just looks wrong. Like some trick with a mirror or something. Human faces whether they are ugly or pretty are balanced. Both sides of the face look like they belong together. This portrait doesn't. Sorry I can't explain it better. When a painting goes missing, you can bet an art forger is going to jump on it. I wonder if Beltracchi forged it.

  26. Is it really from Leonardo? He never finished anything and I though he does not paint faces looking straight at him, head tilted a little?

  27. This painting of Jesus sold for $450,000,000. Judas must feel like he got ripped off, considering he only got $216.25 for the REAL Jesus.

  28. The painting looks as if it were Mary Magdalene maybe… or another female figure of the time…. and later on in history, where patriarchal pigs took over, someone added the facial hair in an attempt to sell?

  29. All comments about it likely being a fake and the Saudi-Russian money laundering have been buried I see…

    They don't call it JewTube for nothing lol.

  30. honestly no idea why people went so nuts for this painting; the image doesn't look very clear at all and its kinda flat. Good, make no mistake, but da Vinci's best work? Not really

  31. The money doesn't matter….the lady who restored the painting is such a lire and she knows she is part of a scam, Just watch her body language, while Alan WinterMute is a professional lire,….after all he's making his money by being such a good lire.and what a big money he makes.

  32. This is not a painting of Jesus, but of the Anti-Christ. The crystal ball represents the occult & placing of fingers is Masonic.

  33. My question is, Leonardo kept secrets in almost all paintings. So remodeling this one might have destroyed the chance of cracking his actual secrets or series of code?

  34. Soooo it's been speculated that this has been a giant SCAM , and it's gone MISSING after the HALF BILLION dollar sale .

  35. Andy sick a** people are using a picture of a homosexual to try and say that it's a picture of the most highs son you m********** are gonna burn at the lowest depths of the lake of fire

  36. That's not JESUS CHRIST it's satan as
    a batomet transgender holding a crystal ball making the
    As above so below hand jester,
    that satan worshipers make..
    A true believer would've recognized
    this from first glance, and known better. This was painted by
    a person who doesn't believe in GOD or GODS WORD..
    That's a fact !!

  37. 2005 in Louisiana… Hurricane Katrina…. would be interesting to know if/how that had any effect on why this was sold at that amount, at that time, at that place …

  38. Jesus probably didn’t look like this. Any paintings of Jesus taken 2000 years ago , God made sure they were destroyed as we are to not worship images

  39. $400,000,000 =
    9,070 years @ $25 per hour full time.
    OR
    1,826 years @ $25ph working LITERALLY non-stop.
    453 years @ $500ph full time.
    91 years @ $500ph working literally non stop.
    Have a nice day.

  40. yOU know it , everyone know's this painting is a fake, a forgery. It is in too good of shape, it is not in his style or even technique, it is all wrong but does anyone care? It past some tests!? Guarantee it will be proven to be a fake.

  41. These people are stupid. to think Yeshua was white. They have no sense and want to millions just for a fake painting that represents nothing.

  42. People crying over seeing it? A bit much. And how come every art expert is always a weird little overly feminine guy?

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