Perhaps one of the most famous paintings in the world, Leonard da Vinci’s The Last Supper has been reproduced to death, so much so that you might question the point of seeing it in person (especially considering that very little of the original painting remains today). But no tote bag or mouse pad or even large-scale reproduction can adequately capture da Vinci’s emotionally charged mural. Unlike frescoes, which are painted on wet plaster and thus must be completed rather quickly, da Vinci used tempera paints on a dry wall, after sealing the stone with dried plaster and adding an undercoat of white lead to achieve greater luminosity. This unique method gave him the time–four years–to perfectly portray the disciples’ looks of anguish and shock after learning that one of them would betray Jesus. It’s also one of the reasons that the paint has been flaking since the 16th century. Go see it before it deteriorates further and reproductions are all that’s left.
Time Out tip: When purchasing your ticket to The Last Supper, add on a ticket for the Biblioteca Ambrosiana, the historic library housing some of da Vinci’s sketches.