Santa Maria delle Grazie Church, Milan
Piazza Santa Maria delle Grazie 2
Corso Magenta
Milano

Santa Maria delle Grazie Church is home to one of the greatest masterpieces in the world: Leonardo da Vinci’s painting of The Last Supper.

The church was built by Solari between 1466 and 1490. Bramante designed the cloister and the vestry. In 1495, five years after it was built, Leonardo da Vinci painted the famous representation of the Last Supper or Cenacolo in Italian on one of the walls in the refectory of the convent. In this painting, Jesus chairs the table and is accompanied by his twelve disciples. It was during this meal that he would announce his betrayal by one of them.

This painting gained the spotlight again following the release of Dan Brown’s best-seller the Da Vinci Code in which the author doubts the true identity of the character who is found to the right of Christ. Some believe that it is Saint John and others believe that perhaps it is Mary Madeleine. Decide for yourself and go and see the painting at the Santa Maria delle Grazie Church.

Da Vinci used a new technique of painting on dry wall. However, this method proved hard to conserve due to the humidity of the room. For this reason the painting has been restored on a number of occasions and visits are restricted. Group visits are limited to a maximum of 25 people and they are limited to 15 minutes to avoid deterioration of the painting.

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