Da Vinci did not paint “Salvatore Mendy.”


The documentary The Savior for Sale, which will soon be shown in France, revealed that “Salvatore Mendi” (1506-1516), drawn by the artist Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519), depicts Christ raising his right hand with a glass ball in his left hand, which is considered “the most expensive painting in The world »It was bought for the account of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for $ 450 million. It is most likely a work of the Da Vinci painter, not the Italian artist personally.The film indicated that Paris had rejected the conditions set by Riyadh for displaying the painting at the 2019 Leonardo exhibition at the Louvre Museum.
Antoine Witkin, director of the documentary that will be shown on the “France 5” channel on April 13th, has investigated this painting, which was bought in poor condition by a New York art dealer in 2005 for $ 1,175 and was restored in the United States.
A number of British experts confirmed that it was indeed a Da Vinci painting, and then it was sold to a Russian financier who then decided to resell it. It was then put up for sale in November 2017 at a contemporary art auction and was presented as an original painting by Leonardo da Vinci. Although the Saudi authorities have never confirmed that Prince Mohammed bin Salman is the owner of “the last painting of Da Vinci,” crossed information indicates that he bought it through a series of middlemen.
According to the documentary, Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s view of the Leonardo da Vinci painting could be the starting point for a prestigious art collection that the kingdom does not yet own.
Meanwhile, at a time when experts began to question whether the work was partly from the implementation of Da Vinci’s assistants, French President Emmanuel Macron received bin Salman in April 2018. The documentary quoted a source in the French administration that the painting “Salvatore Mundi” was Among the topics covered in the talks.
The Saudis asked France to verify whether the painting was from Da Vinci, as the Louvre Museum houses a laboratory “C2RMF” to analyze artworks, where the painting remained for three months.
The same source pointed out that the analysis showed that “Da Vinci only contributed to the painting,” noting that the Louvre informed the Saudis of this. He also stated that bin Salman wanted to loan the painting to the Louvre Museum to be included in the large exhibition dedicated to Leonardo da Vinci at the end of 2019. “His request was very clear: to display the Salvatore Mundi painting” alongside the Mona Lisa, and to present it as a hundred percent painting by Da Vinci. ». The source told his French presidents that “offering them with these Saudi conditions amounts to laundering work for an amount of 450 million dollars.”
The documentary also indicated that the French Minister of Foreign Affairs and Culture, Jean-Yves Le Drian and Frank Riester, “paid special attention to all projects aimed at improving the image of Saudi Arabia,” with regard to cultural and tourism openness. He continued, “At the end of September, Macron settled the matter, as it was decided not to fulfill Bin Salman’s request.” At the last minute, the Saudi crown prince refused to lend the painting on conditions other than his own.
In response to a question by Agence France-Presse, the Louvre reported, on Wednesday, that the director of the film Antoine Fettkin “asked for a comment from him, but the museum did not want to answer his questions because the loan of the painting to the Leonardo da Vinci exhibition did not take place.”


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