What Does Geometry Have To Do With the Isleworth Mona Lisa?

In the early 1500s, a woman named Lisa Gherardini sat for a painting by Leonardo da Vinci. This painting was later dubbed the “Isleworth Mona Lisa.” Art historians and experts have tried to unravel the secrets behind this famous work of art for many years. This article will discuss in larger detail the geometry and proportions of the painting. 

What Is The Isleworth Mona Lisa?

The Isleworth Mona Lisa is a painting of Lisa Gherardini, the wife of Francesco del Giocondo. It got its name from Isleworth, London, where Hugh Blaker had taken it to his studio after rediscovering it. It is thought to be an inspiration for Leonardo da Vinci’s second Mona Lisa, which hangs in the Louvre Museum in Paris. A private collector currently owns the Isleworth Mona Lisa.

Who Was Leonardo Da Vinci?

Most people know Leonardo da Vinci as a famous painter, but he was much more than that. He was a true Renaissance man – an artist, inventor, scientist, and mathematician. He is perhaps best known for his paintings, which include the Isleworth Mona Lisa, Louvre Mona Lisa, and The Last Supper. But da Vinci was also a skilled engineer and architect. He designed many famous buildings, including the Duomo di Milano and the Palazzo Vecchio. In addition, he was a talented musician and wrote several compositions.

What Techniques Did He Use?

Leonardo da Vinci was known for his innovative techniques. He was one of the first painters to use sfumato, a painting technique that creates soft, blurred edges. This technique is often used to create the illusion of depth and distance. He also frequently used chiaroscuro, a contrast between light and dark areas. This contrast makes sense of drama and mood.


Geometry is the branch of mathematics that studies shapes, sizes, and relative positions of figures. It is a critical component of many engineering and architectural designs. Da Vinci was skilled in geometry, as evidenced by his drawings and paintings. But how does this relate to the Isleworth Mona Lisa?

Some experts believe that da Vinci used perspective drawing to create the Isleworth Mona Lisa. Perspective drawing is a type of graphical representation that shows how objects appear to the viewer. It considers the distance and angle from which the thing is viewed. This creates an illusion of depth and space on a two-dimensional surface.

Da Vinci’s Use Of Proportion In His Art

One of the most striking things about Leonardo da Vinci’s paintings is their sense of proportion. He often used a technique called “divine proportion” in his art. This technique involves using mathematical ratios to create pleasing, balanced compositions. For example, the Isleworth Mona Lisa has been said to use the golden ratio – a number that often appears in nature and is believed to be aesthetically pleasing. Some experts believe that the Mona Lisa’s enigmatic smile represents the golden ratio.

Techniques Used In Both The Isleworth and Louvre Mona Lisas

While the Isleworth Mona Lisa and the Louvre Mona Lisa may look different, they were both created using similar techniques. Da Vinci used sfumato and chiaroscuro in both paintings. He also used a one-point perspective, which creates the illusion of depth on a two-dimensional surface. This technique is often used in architecture.

Geometry And The Isleworth Mona Lisa

So, what does geometry have to do with the Isleworth Mona Lisa? Some experts believe that the painting contains hidden geometric shapes and patterns. For example, the body of Lisa Gherardini’s face has been said to resemble a pentagon. Additionally, her eyes are said to be in the form of a golden rectangle. These shapes are considered significant because they often appear in nature and are believed to be aesthetically pleasing.

The Mona Lisa’s Smile

One of the most notable aspects of the Mona Lisa is her enigmatic smile. Some experts believe that this mysterious expression is a hidden code. According to this theory, the Mona Lisa is smiling because she knows something that we don’t. This theory suggests that the painting is a mathematical problem or puzzle that has yet to be solved.

Other Da Vinci Art That Uses This Technique

If the Isleworth Mona Lisa does indeed use geometry, it would not be the only painting by Leonardo da Vinci to do so. The Last Supper is another famous painting that is thought to be full of hidden geometric shapes and patterns. This painting has been studied for centuries, and experts are still trying to unlock all its secrets.

Final Thoughts

The Isleworth Mona Lisa is a fascinating painting with many hidden secrets. It’s possible that Leonardo da Vinci used geometry to create this enigmatic masterpiece. This theory suggests that the painting is much more than just a pretty face – it may be a complex mathematical problem that has yet to be solved.



Alex is the co-author of 100 Greatest Plays, 100 Greatest Cricketers, 100 Greatest Films and 100 Greatest Moments. He has written for a wide variety of publications including The Observer, The Sunday Times, The Daily Mail, The Guardian and The Telegraph.

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