Seeing Leonardo Da Vinci’s masterpiece The Last Supper in person is difficult. First, you have to go to Milan Italy and that’s the easy part. The hard part is gaining admission to the Church of Santa Maria delle Grazie where the painting is located. Only 25 visitors are admitted every 15 minutes thus limiting the number of yearly visitors to around 320,000. This is done to protect the painting from further deterioration.
However, starting on Saturday, October 27, 2007 the painting has been put online in a 16 billion pixel format at http://www.haltadefinizione.com/en/. This very high resolution image allows you to zoom in on details of the fragile painting as if you were just inches away.
The site is having some start-up pains and has been up and down since it went active. The interactivity is a bit jerky at times and it is a bit memory intensive on the browser. You’ll probably need a high speed connection and a fast PC and good video to get the best results. Also I found that the zooming and panning features work better in IE7 than they do in Firefox 2.0.
It’s fantastic to see such great works of art online for all to view, don’t you think?