Did Pablo Picasso Actually Attempt To Steal The Mona Lisa?

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Did world famous painter and sculptor Pablo Picasso actually attempt to steal the Mona Lisa?

That seems to be the question on everyone's mind after reading the title of this week's episode of Part-Time Genius on iHeartRadio. Hosts Will and Mango take listeners through the history of the Mona Lisa and chronologically detail the controversy that rose with the notoriety of the masterpiece in the latest podcast episode. Will begins by providing context, drawing attention to the early days of the Mona Lisa.

"So even before it was in the loop, the Mona Lisa started out hot like it had this great pedigree. It was in the royal collection of the literal King of France, Francis the First, and whose court Leonardo spent the last years of his life. The painting was there for centuries until the French Revolution claimed the royal collection as the property of the people. Then Napoleon took it and placed it in his bedroom because he loved it that much, and then finally it landed in the Louvre."

Overtime, multiple people attempted to steal the painting which gradually became more iconic (along with artist Leonardo da Vinci) as decades passed. Many of these criminals were jailed, and conspiracy theories regarding the true location of the original Mona Lisa began to spread.

Will continued:

"So during that eighteen month period where the French police were not arrested the dudes who actually stole the Mona Lisa, they arrested Pablo Picasso and the poet and critic Guillaume Apollinaire. It started when this guy, Joseph Gary Pierre went to the Paris Journal and told them that for the past several years he'd been stealing and then selling minor artwork from the Louvre, and to prove it, Pierre produced a small statue that the Louver curators confirmed with museums, and the police eventually connected Pierre to Apollinaire, who was a member of Picasso's modernist entourage. They were called 'labond de Picasso,' and there were this like group of artistic firebrands known around town as the wild Men of Paris. And it wasn't really that big a stretch for the police to assume this ring of art thieves were sophisticated enough to swipe the Mona Lisa."

While Picasso did not attempt to swipe the Mona Lisa, he did later confess to stealing other statues. For the full scoop, listen to the most recent episode of Part-Time Genius on iHeartRadio now!

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