A late 15th-century fresco masterpiece by Italian artist Leonardo da Vinci housed by the refectory of the Convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie. It is one of the Western world’s most recognizable paintings.
The work was commissioned as part of a plan of renovations to the church and its convent buildings by Leonardo’s patron Ludovico Sforza, Duke of Milan. The painting represents the scene of the Last Supper of Jesus with his apostles, as it is told in the Gospel of John, 13:2. Leonardo has depicted the consternation that occurred among the Twelve Apostles when Jesus announced that one of them would betray him.
Leonardo worked on The Last Supper from about 1495 to 1498, but did not work continuously. The beginning date is not certain, as the archives of the convent for the period have been destroyed. A document dated 1497 indicates that the painting was nearly completed at that date.
The conservation-restoration of Leonardo da Vinci’s The Last Supper is an ongoing project that has spanned many centuries.