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 Critical analysis of a work of Art-The Last Supper by Leonardo Da Vinci

 Critical analysis of a work of Art-The Last Supper by Leonardo Da Vinci

The Last Supper by Leonardo Da Vinci:

First Impression

Leonardo Da Vinci’s art of “The Last Supper” depicts an elusion to the situation when Jesus was having his last meal with his disciples. The art portrays a visual scene of what unfolded when Jesus said that one of the apostles would betray him. The artist creates a vivid demonstration of what Christians anticipate would be the reaction of the disciple. The art shows the act of sharing. The artist’s work shows Jesus and his Apostles seated, sharing a meal. The art further gives an impression of collaboration. The apostles appear to be negotiating in groups of three, trying to convey their disbelief or consulting each other about a particular aspect. The art draws attention to Jesus being the person at the center of the group when the disciplines group themselves in threes on both sides. The facial and gestures conveyed by the disciples demonstrate a mixture of emotions among them. Some disciples revealed their anger and frustration, as some questioned something that had happened before.


Thirteen men sit on one side of a concrete long table. The table has a white and blue striped covering. The men are dressed in different colors, with multiple being in blue. Some are also in maroon, pink, white and green. Behind them is a door and two windows, partially lighting the room. There is an overhead light source illuminating the room from their front side. The room’s walls have white and black paintings. On top of the table,  there are blue plates with a variety of dishes. There are also small ball-like objects lying on the interior of the table. The men appear in groups of three, and one of them sits at the center of the group. One of the groups is talking directly to the man at the center of the table while the rest of the groups negotiate among themselves. There is an open space between the man at the center and the group on the left side. However, a shallow space can be evident between the individuals in each group. The artist achieves the illusion of depth through visual and gesture illustrations by the characters in the art.


The grouping of the men around the table helps its viewers to distinguish the disciples from Jesus. The disciples group themselves, while Jesus remains alone at the center among them. The artist makes the disciples sit from one side of the table, which helps viewers to see their reactions following Jesus’ alteration. The room lighting increases visibility, where the disciples can be seen as they convey their anger and disbelief. The presence of plates with a variety of food on the table confirms the impression of sharing a meal. The disciples seem to be sharing the meal when a controversial event arises, causing some disputes and disagreements, which they are trying to negotiate. The act of sharing demonstrates a sign of unity among the disciples prior to the contrary information received from Jesus. Vinci used tempera paint on drywall, which has supported its stability and durability over time. “The Last Supper” art remains an enduring work over a long period following the artist’s choice of materials. The artist’s choice of color, material, and texture are the most appealing elements that drove my attention to the art. Despite the art being painted many years ago, it is still eye-capturing and informative. The art offers a visual descriptive nature of the events that unfolded during the Last Supper. In his painting, the artist paid much attention to portraying the disciples’ emotional expressions and meaningful gestures. The symbols and gestures illustrated by the disciples give an in-depth understanding of the corresponding events after Jesus declared that one of them would betray him. All the elements in the art collaborate to portray the intended meaning and emotions of the event. The Last Supper art depicts the tension in the room, as evidenced by the disciples’ reaction to Jesus’ announcement.


Leonardo’s art “The Last Supper” is a painting with a religious conviction influenced by a biblical event when Jesus was sharing the last meal with his disciples and declared that one of them would betray him. The art provides a religious understanding of biblical events. The art features the circumstances that followed after Jesus announced that one of his disciples would betray him. The mixed reactions demonstrated by the disciples emphasize human responses to controversial revelation. The art also provides a broader understanding of the history of art since it is among the most celebrated and studied art. Leonardo created the art to add to the history of art and to spread Christianity. The Last Supper was the final meal that Jesus was to share with his disciples before the crucifixion. The painting visualizes the events and reactions that accompanied Jesus’ declaration. The artist created the art to help the Christians understand the response depicted by the disciples when Jesus announced his betrayal by one of his apostles. The art also conveys the importance of Jesus to his disciples through his central position. The artist also demonstrated the significance of unity among the Christians, as evidenced by Jesus sharing a common meal with all his followers. Leonardo created the art to first reveal his genius mind and creativity. The art incorporated in-depth creative thought, illustrated through his ability to portray emotions and gestures in painting. Leonardo had a great aspiration for the world and its surroundings. The light aspect of the house through the windows and the door shows his willingness to capture the world as it is. The disciples’ mixed reactions to Jesus’ announcement portray the nature of humans. Humans convey different emotions and responses when they encounter contradictory experiences.

Background Information

“The Last Supper” is the artwork of Leonardo Da Vinci, who was painted between 1495 and 1498. The art is regarded as the most important mural painting in the world and is highly recommended in art history. The Italian Renaissance influenced the art. The art portrays his genius creativity, urge to experiment, and curiosity. Leonardo had different professional skills, including writing, engineering, mathematics, painting, and architecture, which he incorporated into his artwork. During the painting of “The Last Supper,” Leonardo pursued studies on light, human emotions, and movement, influencing the art (Bitler). The art depicted his concern on “motions of the soul,” where he incorporated the use of posture, emotional expressions, and gestures. “The Last Supper” art was declared a UNESCO  World Heritage Site in September 1980 as the most extraordinary artistic achievement (Cenacolo Vinciano). The art greatly influenced art history, opening up a new art era. Art historians have a big obligation to preserve the painting and to ensure it remains attractive to its viewers. Art historians and architects incorporate the best technologies to ensure that the masterpiece remains admirable and passed on to the next generations. The art utilized the dry wall-painting technique. It is located at Santa Maria delle Grazie, Milano (Cenacolo Vinciano). The artist incorporates different elements harmoniously, which makes it one of the most popular paintings in the history of art.

Informed Judgement

Following the art’s description, analysis, and background information, my first impression of the art has not changed. The art’s title, “The Last Supper,” clearly created a visual illustration of the events that took place during the event. The art caught me by surprise with the possibility of the artist demonstrating expressions and gestures through painting. The creative nature of the artists has a great influence on the impact of the art and the ability to derive intended meaning. The artist further incorporates different elements, including color, lighting, texture, and material, which work in unison to enhance understanding. The most instrumental part of the art is its ability to demonstrate human responses and reactions to particular experiences or events. The painting has unique elements that would influence my artwork. The ability to convey unspoken utterances in painting especially challenged my thinking and inspired my artistic thoughts. I learned that an art or painting can give the intended meaning to the targeted audience if the artist incorporates diverse strategies in their work. An artist should focus on creating an extraordinary work to build its audience’s attention and earn credit in the art history. Leonardo’s art is an inspiration and a role model for my future artwork.

Works Cited

Bitler, Nicole. “Leonardo da Vinci’s study of light and optics: a synthesis of fields in The Last Supper.” Intersect: The Stanford Journal of Science, Technology, and Society 4 (2011): 26-34.

Cenacolo Vinciano. “The Last Supper Leonardo da Vinci [1452-1519].” Cenacolo Vinciano (2023). <>.

Vector Design. “100 Famous paintings of the world.” Vector Design US, Inc. (2022). <>.


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ARTS 209
Critical Analysis Paper Assignment Instructions
The student will write a 3–5-page research-based paper in current MLA format that presents a critical analysis of a work of art found in a local art museum or a scholarly online source.
Step 1: You completed the Art Analysis Worksheet in Module 7. You will use the information you recorded on the worksheet to write a formal art analysis essay. Depending on the feedback you received from the instructor, you may have to revise some sections.

 Critical analysis of a work of Art-The Last Supper by Leonardo Da Vinci

Critical analysis of a work of Art-The Last Supper by Leonardo Da Vinci

Step 2: Take the completed worksheet and translate your notes into a formal paper in MLA format.
A. The paper must be formatted in the current MLA style, complete with in-text citations and a bibliography with at least 3 sources (1 of which will be the piece itself).

B. The paper must be at least 3 pages minimum. The paper must be formally written (avoiding the use of first-person perspective) and exhibit an application and understanding of terms and principles learned during the course.

C. Embed the piece of art you are writing about at the beginning of your paper. Label the painting according to MLA format. The amount of space the artwork takes up on a page does not count toward the length of the paper.

D. The paper must be organized to follow the process outlined in the 7 steps of the gallery analysis, but it must not include a description of the process (i.e., First, I looked at the piece, and then I described the piece…). You should write the essay in the order that the worksheet is laid out. Begin the essay with your initial reaction, observation, and analysis of elements first. Then, you should write about the background information and how that altered (or did not) your initial reaction and analysis of the piece of art.

Step 3: Submit your finished paper using the assignment submission link in Canvas. The format of the uploaded document’s file name should be as follows: LastnameFirstname_CriticalAnalysisEssay.docx.
Note: Your assignment will be checked for originality via the Turnitin plagiarism tool.

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