To commemorate the five hundredth anniversary of the death of Leonardo da Vinci (1452–1519), The Met will present the artist’s painting St. Jerome Praying in the Wilderness (begun around 1483), a special loan from the Vatican Museums.
The exquisitely rendered work represents Jerome (A.D. 347–420), a major saint and theologian of the Christian Church. The scene is based on the story of his later life, which, according to the thirteenth-century Golden Legend, he spent as a hermit in the desert.
The unfinished painting provides viewers with an extraordinary glimpse into Leonardo's creative process, and a close examination of the paint surface reveals the presence of his fingerprints. The display of this monumental masterpiece will pay homage to one of the most renowned geniuses of all time.
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website.