Quiz about Code of Art
Quiz about Code of Art

Code of Art Trivia Quiz


Classical art isn't always straightforward. This quiz is about some of the secret codes and messages that some people believe are hidden in great works of art.

A photo quiz by suzidunc. Estimated time: 6 mins.
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Author
suzidunc
Time
6 mins
Type
Photo Quiz
Quiz #
393,608
Updated
Dec 03 21
# Qns
10
Difficulty
Tough
Avg Score
5 / 10
Plays
394
Awards
Editor's Choice
Last 3 plays: heidi66 (8/10), characharaboy (3/10), Harish123az (7/10).
photo quiz
1. In the top corner of Domenico Ghirlandaio's 15th century painting "Madonna with Saint Giovannino", there's a small floating object. What did Daniele Bedini claim, in a 1996 article for "Notiziario UFO", that the floating object was? Hint

Sun
Halley's Comet
Black hole
UFO

photo quiz
2. One of Leonardo da Vinci's most famous works, "The Mona Lisa" (circa 1503), has been scrutinised for codes and messages for centuries. Italian researcher Silvano Vinceti told the Associated Press in 2011 that he had found what new symbol or code in her right eye? Hint

A skull and cross bones
The Fibonacci Sequence
The all-seeing eye of Freemasonry
Leonardo da Vinci's initials - "LV"

photo quiz
3. In a paper submitted to the 2013 European Conference on Arts & Humanities, Jared Baxter submitted that Vincent Van Gogh's "Cafe Terrace At Night" (1888) emulates and portrays which scene, made famous by Leonardo da Vinci many centuries earlier? Hint

"The Mona Lisa"
"Adoration of the Magi"
"Vitruvian Man"
"The Last Supper"

photo quiz
4. In 2016, gynaecologist Frank Lynn Meshberger suggested in an article written for the "Journal of the American Medical Association" that the depiction of God and the figures flanking him beneath a swirling cloak in Michelangelo's "Creation of Adam", looks like which human organ? Hint

Spleen
Bladder
Lung
Brain

photo quiz
5. Jan van Eyck's "The Arnolfini Portrait" (1434) famously contains a self portrait of himself in the mirror in the middle, but it also contains some wording above the mirror which means what in English? Hint

Jan van Eyck was here 1434
Painted by Jan van Eyck
The Illuminati will rise again
Mirror of Erised

photo quiz
6. "The Ambassadors", painted by Hans Holbein the Younger in 1533 features a strange looking, distorted shape at the bottom. What body part is this, rendered in anamorphic perspective? Hint

Skull
Ribcage
Leg
Foot

photo quiz
7. The frescoes in the Upper Church at the Basilica of St Francis of Assisi in Perugia, Italy, show St Francis' life story in a number of pictures. In a 2011 edition of the "St Francis", an Italian art history periodical, art historian Chiara Frugoni claimed that number 20 - "The Death and Ascension of St Francis" - shows the saint ascending to heaven on a cloud, which contains what hidden image? Hint

A self portrait of the artist
A pile of gold coins
Jesus Christ
The devil

photo quiz
8. Sandro Botticelli completed the work we now know as "Primavera" in the late 1470s or the early 1480s, showing a group of mythological figures in a garden. In her 2002 book "Botticelli", Elena Capretti claimed that there are over 500 different types of what, painstakingly and accurately painted within this work? Hint

Colours
Cloth folds
Plants
Hair styles

photo quiz
9. "Perseus with the Head of Medusa" is a bronze sculpture dating from 1545-1554, made by Benvenuto Cellini. The back of Perseus' helmet contains another image - what did writer John Shearman suggest in 2003 that this image was? Hint

Another gorgon
Janus' second face
A portrait of Zeus
A self portrait of the sculptor

photo quiz
10. Leonardo da Vinci's "The Last Supper" (created between 1495-1498) is said to contain many hidden codes and messages. In 2007, what did an Italian computer technician called Giovanni Maria Pala state that the positions of the loaves of bread and the apostles' hands denote? Hint

A treasure map
The date of a great flood
Music notes
The date of the Second Coming


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Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. In the top corner of Domenico Ghirlandaio's 15th century painting "Madonna with Saint Giovannino", there's a small floating object. What did Daniele Bedini claim, in a 1996 article for "Notiziario UFO", that the floating object was?

Answer: UFO

Although the foreground of the painting shows Mary with baby Jesus and St John, the background shows what Bedini described as "an airborne object leaden in colour and inclined to port, sporting a 'dome' or 'turret', apparently identifiable as an oval-shaped moving flying device".

If you look closely beneath the alleged UFO, you will also see a man looking up at it, shielding his eyes.
2. One of Leonardo da Vinci's most famous works, "The Mona Lisa" (circa 1503), has been scrutinised for codes and messages for centuries. Italian researcher Silvano Vinceti told the Associated Press in 2011 that he had found what new symbol or code in her right eye?

Answer: Leonardo da Vinci's initials - "LV"

In 2010, Silvano Vinceti stated that he had found what he believed to be legible symbols in both eyes of the "Mona Lisa", and that those found in the right eye were the letters L and V, symbolising da Vinci's initials. The letters are not really visible to the naked eye, however, and can only be viewed with a magnifying glass or microscope.

He also suggested that the bridge in the background contains the numbers 7 and 2.
3. In a paper submitted to the 2013 European Conference on Arts & Humanities, Jared Baxter submitted that Vincent Van Gogh's "Cafe Terrace At Night" (1888) emulates and portrays which scene, made famous by Leonardo da Vinci many centuries earlier?

Answer: "The Last Supper"

In "Café Terrace at Night" there are 12 people sitting at a café, being served food or drink. All of them are centred around one standing figure with what looks like long hair. Baxter's theory is that this emulates Jesus' "Last Supper" with his apostles, which is the subject of one of da Vinci's most famous works.

He also suggested that there are several hidden crosses scattered around the painting, one of which is just above the Christ-like figure.
4. In 2016, gynaecologist Frank Lynn Meshberger suggested in an article written for the "Journal of the American Medical Association" that the depiction of God and the figures flanking him beneath a swirling cloak in Michelangelo's "Creation of Adam", looks like which human organ?

Answer: Brain

Michelangelo was known for his interest in the human brain; he dissected whilst he studied anatomy. Frank Lynn Meshberger suggested that the way in which the figures and God are laid out follows the outline of the main areas of the brain, as well as details such as the cerebellum, spinal cord, and pituitary gland.

The green sash protruding from the bottom of the cloak may also be representative of the vertebral artery, which would be found in a similar position in the brain.
5. Jan van Eyck's "The Arnolfini Portrait" (1434) famously contains a self portrait of himself in the mirror in the middle, but it also contains some wording above the mirror which means what in English?

Answer: Jan van Eyck was here 1434

Effectively, Jan van Eyck "tagged" this own painting by writing "Jan van Eyck was here 1434" on the wall between the two people. In 1934 it was suggested by art historian Erwin Panofsky, in an analysis of the painting, that the painting may have constituted a marriage record between the two people depicted (Giovanni di Nicolao Arnolfini and his wife) and that the writing is van Eyck's method of confirming that he witnessed the marriage.
6. "The Ambassadors", painted by Hans Holbein the Younger in 1533 features a strange looking, distorted shape at the bottom. What body part is this, rendered in anamorphic perspective?

Answer: Skull

To view the skull properly, you must approach the painting from high on the right-hand side or low on the left-hand side and look down through the picture. It has been suggested by some people that this painting should hang by stairs to allow the skull to be viewed properly. There is also another skull in the cap of Jean de Dinteville, the man pictured on the left.

In Christian J. Mamiya's 2005 book "Gardner's Art Through the Ages", it was suggested that the skulls may have been included as a "memento mori" (a reflection on mortality).
7. The frescoes in the Upper Church at the Basilica of St Francis of Assisi in Perugia, Italy, show St Francis' life story in a number of pictures. In a 2011 edition of the "St Francis", an Italian art history periodical, art historian Chiara Frugoni claimed that number 20 - "The Death and Ascension of St Francis" - shows the saint ascending to heaven on a cloud, which contains what hidden image?

Answer: The devil

The frescoes were painted between 1297-1300 by Giotto di Bondone. If you look closely at the top right-hand side of the cloud, you may be able to see a nose, horns, ears and a mouth, which Chiara Frugoni states represents the devil being pushed down by the weight of the saint's ascension.
8. Sandro Botticelli completed the work we now know as "Primavera" in the late 1470s or the early 1480s, showing a group of mythological figures in a garden. In her 2002 book "Botticelli", Elena Capretti claimed that there are over 500 different types of what, painstakingly and accurately painted within this work?

Answer: Plants

Although the meaning of "Primavera" is unclear, it is particularly well-known for the huge number of plants accurately depicted throughout the elongated panel drawing. Following a claim made by art historian Gloria Fossi in her 1998 book "Botticelli. Primavera", that there were at least 190 different types of flowers depicted in the painting, Capretti stated that there were over 500 different species of plants overall.
9. "Perseus with the Head of Medusa" is a bronze sculpture dating from 1545-1554, made by Benvenuto Cellini. The back of Perseus' helmet contains another image - what did writer John Shearman suggest in 2003 that this image was?

Answer: A self portrait of the sculptor

Depicting the story of Perseus, the hero who slayed the Gorgon Medusa, Cellini's sculpture was one of the first narrative sculptures to be used in a piazza in Florence. Interestingly, opposite the statue and in viewing distance of Medusa's head are three statues of men - Hercules, David, Neptune which seems appropriate given that Medusa was famous for turning men to stone with just one look. Cellini's self-portrait is only visible from the back.

John Shearman's 2003 book "Art Or Politics in the Piazza?" referenced a long-held (though uncorroborated) belief by many that the face on the back of Perseus' helmet is a self portrait of Cellini.
10. Leonardo da Vinci's "The Last Supper" (created between 1495-1498) is said to contain many hidden codes and messages. In 2007, what did an Italian computer technician called Giovanni Maria Pala state that the positions of the loaves of bread and the apostles' hands denote?

Answer: Music notes

If you draw 5 stave lines across the positions of the apostles' hands and the loaves of bread on the table, the locations of the bread and hands are said to represent music notes. The melody has been played and recorded by those who believe that this is a deliberate code as a 40 second long hymn-like piece. Giovanni Maria Pala stated in his 2007 article, "La Musica Celata" (The Hidden Music), that the music "sounds like a requiem".

Amongst other codes and messages, it has also been suggested that there is an astrological code in the half moon window above Christ's head in "The Last Supper" which may portend a great flood in the year 4006.
Source: Author suzidunc

This quiz was reviewed by FunTrivia editor looney_tunes before going online.
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