15 Famous Paintings By Leonardo da Vinci: History & Influence

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Leonardo da Vinci (1452–1519), was a Renaissance polymath known for testing numerous artistic traditions and techniques.

The compositions, innovations, and inventions of Leonardo da Vinci led to the methods that later marked his works.

Leonardo created an honest interpretation of life by using his experience in scientific observation.

His innovations influenced various aspiring painters and established a standard for whole new generations.

Besides the Mona Lisa and the Last Supper, he created numerous pieces of art that garnered millions of viewers. 

Hence, many Renaissance artists, who equally contributed to the world of art, also kept Leonardo in the spotlight, which he deserved to be. 

Here, we have discussed famous paintings by Leonardo da Vinci that had an impact during his time and made history in art.

Let’s learn about them!

15. The Battle Of Anghiari, 1505

Portrait of one of the famous paintings "The Battle Of Anghiari" by Leonardo da Vinci.

The lost work of art by Leonardo da Vinci is sometimes referred to as the “Lost Leonardo.”

This fine piece of art was created for the Sala del Gran Consiglio.

As a representation of “The Conflict of Anghiari,” it shows a fierce battle between men riding horses.

While creating it, Vinci experimented a lot with the subjects, employing the encaustic method

The finished product is a base of the most appropriate oil painting, with sponges used as a pitch layer for the work.

This well-known work by Leonardo da Vinci is situated in the Province of Arezzo, Tuscany, Italy, and has a current estimated worth of more than 1.5 million USD.

14. The Virgin Of The Rocks, 1483–1486

Portrait of one of the famous paintings "The Virgin Of The Rocks" by Leonardo da Vinci.

The names and subjects of the two paintings are identical.

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One artwork is housed in the Louvre Museum in Paris, and the other is in the National Gallery in London.

Leonardo da Vinci’s earliest painting to show the Madonna and Christ Child, as well as a young John the Baptist and an angel, is the one at the Louvre.

Leonardo’s paintings’ primary goal was to display the essence of nature and its fundamental truths.

The artworks by Leonardo da Vinci have a grotto appearance and are unlikely to have been naturally created by a human.

With no precise price stated, the portrait’s cost appears to be a mystery.

(Also Read: Paintings In The Louvre

13. St. John the Baptist, 1513–1516

Portrait of one of the famous paintings "St. John the Baptist" by Leonardo da Vinci

Leonardo’s painting evidently depicts the Bible passage. 

In this painting, the saint is preparing the way for the Messiah while wearing camel skin and preaching the Gospels.

He is supposed to have consumed wild honey as food and locusts as a drink.

St. John is depicted in Leonardo’s artwork, wherein he’s appearing from the darkness, with emphasis on his face and a grin.

The way Leonardo da Vinci pointed his finger up at the sky was unfathomable to us.

Leonardo’s faith in Christianity grew in the last years of his life, influencing him to paint this artwork.

It’s one of the famous paintings by Leonardo da Vinci that is housed in the Louvre Abu Dhabi, with no exact amount mentioned, leaving a mystery for this artwork.

12. Madonna and the Child, 1490

Portrait of one of the famous paintings "Madonna and the Child" by Leonardo da Vinci

One of the most famous paintings by Leonardo da Vinci, Madonna, is a portrait of the Virgin Mary breastfeeding a child.

The painting is similar to the other painting in Vinci’s Madonna of the Carnation.

If you look closely at the infant Christ, you can see only a goldfinch in his left hand, which represents his future passion.

Leonardo was raised by his biological mother before being adopted by his father’s wife.

His concept of portraying the Mother of God is especially significant to him, as he himself had “two mothers.” 

This masterpiece has a net worth of 850 million dollars.

11. The Virgin and Child with Saint Anne, 1503–1519

Portrait of one of the famous paintings "The Virgin and Child with Saint Anne" by Leonardo da Vinci

After the birth of King Louis XII’s daughter Mary, he commissioned this work by Leonardo, which is regarded as an incomplete oil painting.

The three generations of the holy family, using a variety of traditions, are portrayed in Leonardo’s famous painting.

The paintings show Saint Anne, the Christ child, and her daughter, the Virgin Mary.

The Christ figure in this artwork appears to be childlike, with a trusting look, in contrast to Leonardo’s other painting, “The Virgin of the Rocks.”

This famous painting by Leonardo da Vinci, which was previously housed at the Musee du Louvre in Paris, has a value of 150 to 200 million dollars in today’s market.

10. Ginevra de Benci, 1474–1478

Portrait of one of the famous paintings "Ginevra de Benci" by Leonardo da Vinci

A Leonardo da Vinci artwork from his early 20s demonstrates some of the unorthodox techniques he employed throughout his career.

This painting was a gesture of respect for Ginevra’s engagement to Luigi di Bernardo Niccolini at the age of 16.

Contemporary portraits of females are influenced by either of two occasions: engagement or marriage.

Instead of keeping something regular, he chooses to pose the melancholy young woman in a three-quarter position in this artwork.

Eventually, he became the first Italian artist to portray such a composition. 

You’ll find this famous painting by Leonardo in the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.

This incredible work of art was reported to have cost five million dollars at the time it was created; therefore, its value today would be unimaginably higher.

9. Salvator Mundi, 1500

Portrait of one of the famous paintings "Salvator Mundi" by Leonardo da Vinci

Leonardo possibly painted Salvator Mundi for King Louis XII of France and his wife, Anne of Brittany.

Most likely, it was ordered not long after Milan and Genoa were conquered.

Many people commented about how poorly Jesus’ face and posture were depicted.

Later, the auction house in charge of the sale took down all the negative comments and praised Leonardo for his delicate modeling of Jesus.

In 2013, the painting was purchased for over 75 million dollars in a private sale, and later, the artwork was sold to a Russian collector for 127.5 million dollars.

It was once displayed at the National Gallery in London even though the copy was lost.

8. Lady with an Ermine, 1489–1491

Portrait of one of the famous paintings "Lady with an Ermine" by Leonardo da Vinci

This oil on walnut board portrait by Leonardo da Vinci shows Cecilia Gallerani when she was the mistress of Milan’s Duke Lodovico Sforza.

The animal portrayed is an allusion to Sforza, as he sometimes went by the name “ermelino bianco” (white ermine).

This portrait is a love letter from Sforza to Gallerina; since he could not pose with her in it, Vinci has used ermine as a symbol for Sforza.

The head is slightly inclined to the right, looking at something outside the frame, and the background is completely dark, drawing attention to the face and the clothing.

Leonardo da Vinci’s famous work illustrates both—his knowledge of anatomy and his aptitude for presenting the human form in a particular way.

The Czartoryski Museum in Kraków, Poland, is currently home to this painting by Vinci, which is valued at around two million dollars.

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7. Head of a Woman (La Scapigliata), 1508

Portrait of one of the famous paintings "Head of a Woman" by Leonardo da Vinci

The portrait gives out a brushstroke view, with the woman’s head inclined to the left, revealing her eyes as they gaze downward.

We were able to deduce from the image that the title of this particular picture, “La Scapigliata,” means “The Lady with Dishevelled Hair.”

Leonardo painted a woman’s face meticulously and beautifully, with a finished face and some free-flowing, sketched tendrils.

The main motive to create this artwork was to show that women can be inherently charming with their wild power that cannot be caged.

During the era, women were the main subjects, which is why several paintings of women were being made, reflecting their artistic nature of them. 

One of Leonardo’s best-known works of art was impressively sold at auction for a staggering sum of 450 million dollars, and it is now on display in the Royal Library of Turin.

6. The Annunciation, 1472–1476

Portrait of one of the famous paintings "The Annunciation" by Leonardo da Vinci

Annunciation was rigid during the Renaissance.

The image shows the traditional arrangement of the Virgin on the right and the angel on the left, separated by a little platform.

This Leonardo da Vinci art piece is recognized as a youthful work.

Influenced by his master, Verrocchio, this picture exemplifies Vinci’s unique artistic talent.

By handling the figures, their essence, and the distant tree, which signifies the love for nature, Leonardo displays his ability to be poetic and creative.  

The artwork was brought to the Uffizi from the church San Bartolomeo a Monteoliveto in Florence in 1867, with no trace of its original location or value.

5. The Baptism of Christ, 1472

Portrait of one of the famous paintings "The Baptism of Christ" by Leonardo da Vinci

Together with his master, Andrea del Verrochio, Leonardo da Vinci created this well-known artwork.

Verrochio finished the bulk of the work, but Vinci added the finishing touches to the angels in the image.

The picture represents St. John the Baptist during the baptism of the Lord Jesus Christ, as per the Gospels of Luke, Mark, and Matthew.

The ritual of baptism is symbolized by the god’s outstretched arms and golden rays.

To give the artwork a complete meaning, Leonardo included his efforts in the angel portion of the sculpture.

This famous painting by Leonardo da Vinci, which is on display at the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, is not specifically priced in the description.

4. Self Portrait, 1512

Portrait of one of the famous paintings "Self Portrait" by Leonardo da Vinci

This red chalk painting of an elderly man appears to be Leonardo’s own self-portrait when he was in his early 60s.

Only the eyes, nose, and mouth stand out as facial characteristics in this work, coupled with some loosely curled hair that gradually melds into the background.

The same techniques were employed in his earlier artwork, “Head of a Woman.”

Vinci created this painting in order to depict individualism, which he was highly influenced by, and to showcase the real side of human flaws, nature, and the body.

For an undisclosed sum, this self-portrait was purchased by the Royal Library of Turin.

The fact that Vinci created this famous picture at the age of sixty is astonishing, even though the piece was not universally regarded as his own self-portrait.

3. Vitruvian Man, 1487

Portrait of one of the famous paintings "Vitruvian Man" by Leonardo da Vinci

This pen-and-ink sketch, “Vitruvian Man,” is taken from the notebooks that he kept in his hands throughout his adult life.

The ideal individual in Leonardo’s picture can fit inside both a circle and a square.

By drawing a male figure in two superimposed postures with his arms and legs extended to fit in a square and a circle, the piece of art by Leonardo da Vinci was commendable. 

This concept of the microcosm became one of his most important unifying ideas in the late 1480s.

He was greatly inspired by his 1489 anatomy studies, which led him to believe that the world and human physiology were closely related.

The Gallerie dell’Accademia in Venice houses this iconic Leonardo da Vinci painting, which cost an astounding 860 million euros to purchase.

2. The Last Supper, 1495–1498

Portrait of one of the famous paintings "The Last Supper" by Leonardo da Vinci

The Last Supper, a work by Leonardo da Vinci that will change the course of art history, began around 1495.

This well-known artwork by Leonardo da Vinci depicts an event from all four of the Gospels.

The night before his betrayal, Jesus called all of his followers to a foot-washing ceremony as a token of their equality before the Lord and to let them know that he knew what would happen.

Vinci became inspired to depict the moment before Jesus was betrayed.

Do you know that the artwork’s value has increased from 59 dollars in 1958 to 100 million dollars today?

Isn’t it huge? 

Exhibited in Milan, in the refectory of the Dominican convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie, this famous artwork is fascinating in itself.

(You can also read: 12 Famous Paintings of Jesus that explain Christ’s history)

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1. Mona Lisa, 1503–1519

Portrait of one of the famous paintings "Mona Lisa" by Leonardo da Vinci

The Mona Lisa is the most well-known piece of art in the entire world. 

Housed in the Louvre Museum in Paris, it’s worth $870 million, holding the Guinness World Record for the most expensive painting ever purchased.

Leonardo da Vinci created the oil painting on wood, which is also referred to as the “Portrait of Lisa Gherardini,” Francesco Del Giocondo’s wife.

Leonardo’s use of the sfumato technique to produce this figure of a woman sitting in Florentine clothing with an enigmatic smile and a mysterious stare is astounding.

She is more realistic because of the sitter’s puzzled expression.

She seems to be a complicated character who equally represents opposing traits.

Viewers’ inability to tell if her smile is sweet or mocking them in response to the paintings leaves a significant unanswered question to date.


Do you know how many paintings Leonardo da Vinci made throughout his life?

Being one of the most famous painters, Vinci produced only 20 paintings in his entire lifetime, which is why they are renowned and highly valued.

Vinci’s curiosity to know about each detail was the main reason for his success in the world of art.

Lastly, I would like to mention one of Leonardo’s quotes.

“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.”

Leonardo da Vinci

This quote reflects on Leonardo’s every painting, wowing a large chunk of the audience. 

(Also Read: Paintings By Caravaggio That Portrayed His Mastery In Chiaroscuro)

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