Tech CEO suggests France sell the Mona Lisa

Posted by Leila Stein on 20 May 2020

Fabernovel founder Stéphane Distinguin suggested France sell its most famous painting to cover the financial losses its experienced during the coronavirus pandemic.

In an interview with Usbek & Rica Magazine, the French CEO suggested the country ‘sell the family jewellery’. He estimated the painting could be sold for €50 billion (around R994 billion).

Although this has been considered overblown it is hard to calculate such an artworks value. This is because it is not just the value of the artwork itself but also the money it makes for the Lourve, as a draw for tourists.

While Distinguin did suggest physically selling the painting using Euros, he also suggested a possibly less drastic, though more tech-minded approach, ‘tokenising’ it using crypto-currency.

Through this process, Distinguin explained the painting could be exchanged between nations.

‘It would be like a big global subscription.Legally and technically, this solution would have many advantages: it would allow France and the Louvre to keep control of the painting. One can even imagine that this ploy would garner the assent of the great Leonardo da Vinci, he who painted but also mastered all the sciences and technologies of his time,’ he told the magazine.

This suggestion has been met with opposition and is unlikely to be taken seriously by the French government, as expected. Countries which are home to what Vanity Fair calls ‘pilgrimage paintings’ are unlikely to let them go, even during financial difficulty, because of their rarity.

Not every painting has the allure that the Mona Lisa does. People fly to Paris, queue outside the Lourve and pay a pretty penny to catch a glimpse of her smile.

Image: Unsplash



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