This mini print features Leonardo da Vinci's The Lady with an Ermine.
Cecilia Gallerani (1473–1536), the beloved mistress of Ludovico Sforza, turns her head as if to listen. The ermine she holds may symbolise the purity of her beauty [see 17]. Leonardo believed paintings such as this could both commemorate and inspire love. His triumph in creating a portrait that was true to life yet forever beautiful was celebrated in a poem by his contemporary, Bernardo Bellincioni.
01 December 2011