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Highest insurance valuation for a painting

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For the record

  • Who: Leonardo Da Vinci

  • What: Highest insurance valuation for a painting

  • Where:

The highest known insurance valuation for a painting is $100million (£53.55 million) assessed for the move of The Mona Lisa (La Gioconda) by Leonardo da Vinci (1452–1519, Italy) from the Louvre in Paris, France, to Washington, DC, USA and then New York City, New York, USA for a special exhibition 14 December 1962 to 12 Mar 1963. However, insurance was not concluded because the cost of the highest security precautions was less than that of the premiums.

It was painted c. 1503–07 and measures 77x53cm 30 3/8 x 20 7/8 in. It is believed to portray either Mona (short for Madonna) Lisa Gherardini, the wife of Francesco del Giocondo of Florence, or Constanza d'Avalos, coincidentally nicknamed La Gioconda, mistress of Giuliano de' Medici. King Francis I of France bought the painting for his bathroom in 1517 for 4000 gold florins, or 13.94kg 37.35 lb troy of gold. The equivalent today (May 1996) would be £124,424.


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