Lost window  - Cecilia Gallerani

Lost window  - Cecilia Gallerani

It is certain that some windows were drawn in the background.

Some studies have claimed that a door was drawn on the right hand, but it was not confirmed.

The background was completely repainted, the cause of, It is possible that the background was unfinished.

When he drew a portrait, Leonardo persisted in backlight.
The window drawn in the background gradually changed widely, it finally expanded like composition of Mona Lisa.

In this stage, the windows are assumed to have been middle size.


Portrait of Cecilia Gallerani

Portrait of Cecilia Gallerani

Oil on walnut, 55 x 40.5cm   Cracow, Muzem Narodove, Czartoryski Collection


This panel consists of a single piece of thin walnut wood panel, about 4–5 millimetres thick, prepared with a layer of white gesso and a layer of brownish underpaint.
The painting is in very good condition which retains its original dimensions.

Leonardo used spolvero, which confirm the use of a cartoon - a full-scale drawing,in the drawing within the face, right arm, right hand, left hand, bridge of the nose and start of the hair. The fingerprints typical of Leonardo's painting from this period can be identified in Cecilia's face.

The background was completely repainted in a dark colour, between 1830 and 1870, originally probably a shade of grey-blue. Unfortunately the right-hand background once showed an open window was not confirmed by recent research.

The painting is described by the court poet Bernardo Bellincioni, It is also mentioned in a letter from Isabella d’Este to Cecilia, in which she asks to borrow the portrait in order to compare it with a work by Giovanni Bellini, who was the most famous Venetian painter at that time. But she declined the proposal, and Cecilia had the portrait until her death in 1536.

The picture possibly surfaces in the collection of Rudolf Ⅱ in Prague in 1612. Towards the end of the 18th century, it was purchased in Italy by Prince Adam Jerzy Czartoryski as a present for his mother.