The subtle smile of the "Mona Lisa" has enchanted the art world for more than 500 years. But does it belong to an entirely different woman?
French scientist Pascal Cotte says he has revealed three hidden paintings beneath the surface of Leonardo Da Vinci's masterpiece -- one of which is likely to be the real portrait of Lisa del Giocondo, the woman thought to be the subject of the painting.
The hidden picture shows a woman looking into the distance, with no trace of the characteristic smile. Cotte believes he has discovered the genuine portrait of Lisa del Giocondo, also known as Lisa Gherardini, the wife of a Florentine merchant.
"My scientific imagery technique (L.A.M.) takes us into the heart of the paint-layers of the world's most famous picture and reveals secrets that have remained hidden for 500 years," Cotte said in a statement. "The results shatter many myths and alter our vision of Leonardo's masterpiece forever."