Art Explained: Ten
J. Antonio FARFAN
Acrylic, oil, pigment and gold leaf on linen
78 x 84 in. (198.1 x 213.4 cm)
An ultramarine circle with a thin sliver of gold is positioned atop a distressed monochromatic transfer of Leonardo da Vinci’s Last Supper. The circular form on this painting was created from research into the writings of Pythagoras and Leonardo da Vinci. It later became of interest that the ideas of the English physician and polymath Robert Fludd had a striking resemblance to similar expressions. In short words, I have proposed that the circular symbol is a Greek mnemonic device created by the philosopher and mathematician Pythagoras of Samos at the beginning of the Inter Testamental period -spanning roughly from 530 BC to 70 AD. The period is considered to begin around the time Pythagoras left his birthplace of Samos and on to experience Egypt where he ultimately developed many theories including that of metempsychosis, or the transmigration of the souls. We find that while Pythagoras had a strong tradition of number symbolism and mystical significance he did not leave us with any mechanisms to outline how the transmigration occurs. I strongly believe that this circle is that mechanism. I also believe Leonardo da Vinci himself later used that same circle to “graphically” illustrate the structure of the Last Supper.