Decoding Western art's buried messages
London (CNN) -- Dan Brown's "The Da Vinci Code" encouraged amateur "symbologists" everywhere to scan their favorite paintings for secret codes -- but the practice has been going on for centuries.
From the inscrutable prehistoric cave drawings inside the Chauvet Caves in Southern France to the abstract paintings of Jackson Pollock, artists have kept the intentions and significance of their work close to their chests.
Famously opaque paintings include Bronzino's 1545 work "An Allegory with Venus and Cupid," which contains allegorical figures even scholars aren't able to decipher.
Still, historians often discover hidden images, symbols and texts in works of art.
CNN World's Treasures selects examples of such discoveries -- some reputable, others outlandish....
comments powered by Disqus
- South Dakota drops history as a high school requirement
- The Forgotten History Of 'Violent Displacement' That Helped Create The National Parks
- Gospel of Jesus’ Wife May Be Authentic, New Tests Suggest
- Architect Sought for Obama’s Presidential Library Complex
- 2016 election's leading candidates have strong Jewish family ties
- Historians tackle America’s mass incarceration problem
- Report: Russian studies in crisis
- Ken Burns: Donald Trump’s birtherism — a “politer way of saying the ‘N-word'” — proves America isn’t remotely “post-racial”
- Medievalist calls on historians to welcome pop culture
- NYT History Book Reviews: Who Got Noticed this Week?