Clamorous France 2 news gaffe: Leonardo presented as "French genius" (and that's not even the only debunking)

France 2's gaffe in a report on Leonardo da Vinci: the great Tuscan artist presented as a French genius. Nor is this their only blunder.

A resounding art-historical gaffe was made by France 2 news anchor Julian Bugier in the 8 p.m. edition of the May 1 edition: in introducing the report on Leonardo da Vinci, theanchorman presented the great Renaissance artist as a “French genius”(at this link, minute 33).

Immediate reactions from the Italian public on the web when the news broke in our country’s media, and one can well imagine what the tenor of the comments was (plus the gaffe was an indispensable assist for Sunday nationalists, keyboard chauvinists, and bar sport political analysts). But it was not, however, the only debunking by France 2, all tacked on to lend force to the demonstration that the Mona Lisa’s smile was the “first real smile in the history of art” (with good grace to Antonello da Messina: evidently, according to the French broadcaster’s journalists, his were smiles ... forced). A thesis, it has to be said.... laughable.

And as images of the Acerenza panel (a work that, Tomaso Montanari once wrote, if one were to believe it to be by Leonardo, would be like mistaking a bicycle for a portarei) and Rembrandt’s Dr. Tulp ’s Anatomy Lesson (who lived a century after Leonardo and has been brought up for no good reason) scroll by, macabre details are evoked (“Leonardo has the eye of the scientist, and in order for the smile in his paintings to be hyperrealistic, he works in depth: he even goes so far as to dissect about thirty corpses in order to learn more about human anatomy”) and as a program of mysteries (“Leonardo also boasted a secret painting technique”), and we come to the conclusion that the smile would later become a typical element of his production.

In short, even the presence of an expert like Vincent Delieuvin did not lift the fortunes of the service, so that the only smiles moved by French television were those of viewers, especially Italian viewers. And they will not have to complain to their colleagues at France 2 if there is someone in Italy tomorrow who perhaps says that... Napoleon was Italian!

Clamorous France 2 news gaffe: Leonardo presented as
Clamorous France 2 news gaffe: Leonardo presented as "French genius" (and that's not even the only debunking)

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