As the Louvre
prepares its blockbuster Leonardo da Vinci
exhibition in honor of the 500th anniversary of his death, there has been no shortage of news related to the Renaissance
master. First came the announcement that all visitors would need to acquire reservations
to see the show, and more recently it was reported that Salvator Mundi
the work attributed to Leonardo that sold for a record-breaking $450 million
in November 2017—may be pulled from the show
due to concerns over the accuracy of its attribution. The tone of today’s news is quite different, as the Louvre announced it will be debuting a its first-ever virtual reality work in tandem with the exhibition.
The VR work will be titled Mona Lisa: Beyond the Glass
and is being produced by the exhibition’s curators in collaboration with HTC VIVE Arts. It will allow users to get up-close to the work, which is heavily protected and perpetually mobbed by museumgoers. The VR experience is intended to shed new light on Leonardo’s techniques as well as on the identity of the sitter. The VR work will also be accessible as a home version for those with digital subscriptions.
Dominique de Font-Réaulx, director of mediation and cultural programming at the Louvre, said in a statement: