Leonardo da Vinci and the Salvador Mundi: The Story of the World’s Most Expensive Painting with Jayne Yantz

Leonardo da Vinci and the Salvador Mundi: The Story of the World’s Most Expensive Painting with Jayne Yantz


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This seminar goes behind the scenes of the astonishing $450 million sale of a painting called Salvador Mundi, attributed to Leonardo da Vinci. We look at Leonardo’s artistic career, examine this painting in context, and ask why a Saudi Prince would be interested in its purchase.

This seminar investigates Leonardo da Vinci, one of the founders of the Italian High Renaissance. We examine Leonardo’s development as an artist, peek into his personal notebooks, and probe his techniques for protecting his ideas and inventions—his intellectual property.

In this context, we analyze the sensational "Salvator Mundi," a painting attributed to Leonardo that recently broke auction records as the world’s most expensive painting. We discuss its subject matter, artistic style, and history, then examine its authenticity by considering expert opinions that claim this picture is by Leonardo da Vinci—and those that say it is not. Even more intriguing—we ask why it would fetch such a record-breaking price paid by a Saudi prince--and what that purchase really means.

By the end of this seminar, participants will understand some of the intricacies of the art market, appreciate the growing impact of the Middle East in the world of Western art, and develop a feeling for Leonardo’s personality and art style.

Led by art historian Jayne Yantz, an instructor of Renaissance and Baroque art, this seminar provides participants with an introduction to the art market, an appreciation for the growing impact of the Middle East in European auction houses, and an understanding of Leonardo da Vinci and his world.

Jayne Yantz completed graduate work in art history and anthropology before beginning a career in college teaching. She specializes in non-Western art and European Old Masters has traveled extensively to see the works of art she teaches and believes it is important to continue learning throughout life. Jayne has received continued recognition for teaching excellence, including the Teacher of the Year award from her college. She currently lives in the New Jersey Pinelands on a nature preserve.

This conversation is suitable for all ages

90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.

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