Intriguing Fan Theories About Famous Artworks

The greatest paintings of the greatest artists get looked at over and over. If you love the Mona Lisa, you'll want to drink in every detail. When we don't know the entire story behind the painting, those details can become oh-so important clues. Even when we know a lot about the artist and his subjects, those details can give us a new spin, an interpretation, or fan theory, about the motivation behind the masterpiece.

Van Gogh painted The Starry Night while he was in a mental asylum. What does the image tell us about his state of mind? Is there any real evidence that Leonardo da Vinci painted his own face into the Mona Lisa? Could there be a political statement in Caspar David Friedrich's painting Das Eismeer (The Sea of Ice)? And once you get into the details of The Garden of Earthly Delights by Hieronymus Bosch, you may find yourself going down a rabbit hole. Read up on eight modern interpretations of famous artworks that are the result of noticing details and digging into the history behind them at Mental Floss. 

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