- SigmaLv 71 decade agoFavorite Answer
The entire background of the Mona Lisa is a landscape. The subject is not placed under an open sky. Compared with other portraits, the Mona Lisa takes in the greatest distance, the most water, the densest atmosphere, the loftiest peaks. It also seems to be more than just a background, to be a additional imposing presence within the picture, the expanse and curvature indicating no mere scene but a portion of the globe itself.
Leonardo da Vinci provided the Mona Lisa with a background that is every odd, although not so often discussed, as the famous smile. It is a two-storied structure, like one of those double churches in which Gothic builders sometimes indulged their talents for the unexpected: below there is a relatively - or formerly - human landscape, with a bridge that spans a partly dry riverbed and a road that winds to a hidden end through hot reddish brown rocks; above there is a frosty region with two glaucous lakes, or sea inlets, and a mountain range whose jagged spires vary from olive green to light blue and finally become transparent in the flooding light of the distant horizon. One can be reminded of the Italian Alps and of parts of Tuscany, but there is no point in seeking a real location, for obviously this is an assembled landscape (McMullen, 91).
One might imagine that Leonardo considered adding indications of greenery to the background or a verifiable emblematic detail, but as it is, the landscape has little to do with the sitter herself than with the artist's desire to elaborate the composition, and, perhaps to enhance the beauty of the figure by way of contrast, such as the welcoming look on the face and the forbidding look of the scenery.Source(s): http://www.hepguru.com/monalisa/monalisa.htm