The Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi, DCT Abu Dhabi, announced today that it will delay the unveiling of Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi.
Originally acquired by DCT Abu Dhabi in November 2017 at auction from Christie’s in New York, the painting was scheduled to be on display at Louvre Abu Dhabi from 18th September.
Painted by one of history’s most renowned and admired artists, the iconic Salvator Mundi is one of fewer than 20 known surviving paintings by the Italian Renaissance master. Dating from around 1500, it is an oil on panel work depicting a half-length figure of Christ as Saviour of the World, facing the viewer, and dressed in flowing robes of lapis and crimson. The figure holds a crystal orb in his left hand as he raises his right hand in benediction.
This exceptional work is believed to be a contemporary of both La Belle Ferronniere and the Mona Lisa. It was recorded in the inventory of the royal collection of King Charles I (1600-1649). Presumed to have been destroyed, Salvator Mundi was rediscovered in 2007, when restoration was undertaken by Dianne Dwyer Modestini, Senior Research fellow and Conservator of the Kress Programme in Paintings Conservation at the Conservation Centre of the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University.