Introducing Rakewell, Apollo’s wandering eye on the art world. Look out for regular posts taking a rakish perspective on art and museum stories
The Mona Lisa’s move this week from her usual spot in the Salle des États, which is undergoing renovations until October, is proving to be rather divisive. Leonardo’s most famous painting can now be found in the Galerie Médicis (Room 801), home to Rubens’s monumental cycle in praise of Marie de’ Medici.
The Mona Lisa is moving to another room!
📍The masterpiece is now on display in the Galerie Médicis (room 801).
The Mona Lisa is temporarily relocated and will return to the Salle des États (room 711) in mid-October 2019, once the renovation work in the room is completed. pic.twitter.com/KjCQN0bCbj
— Musée du Louvre (@MuseeLouvre) July 17, 2019
The selfie–magnet’s move appears to have caused confusion among the single-minded hordes who visit the Louvre for one purpose and one purpose only. ‘If admiring the work easily was difficult before, [the visitor] must now overcome a thousand hardships to get close to it,’ the Spanish-language website Diario del Viajero opined; ‘It’s madness in here,’ a Louvre security guard told Le Parisien. Others provided photo evidence:
State of the Louvre queues as everyone tries to get to the relocated Mona Lisa. pic.twitter.com/XIo4IwU4Qg
— Catherine Fletcher (@cath_fletcher) July 17, 2019
As if that weren’t enough, the masterpiece’s new positioning – in a bulletproof vitrine in front of The Disembarkation at Marseilles – has not pleased everyone. ‘We’re not going to lie – it looks a bit odd,’ says Artnet. Jesse M. Locker, professor of art history at Portland State University, reached some rather stronger conclusions:
New temporary installation. I’m starting to suspect the curators at the Louvre secretly hate the Mona Lisa. pic.twitter.com/27poHtTWED
— Jesse M. Locker (@JesseMLocker) July 17, 2019
And did nobody spare a thought for all the poor Rubens fans?