Madonna with the Yarnwinder
Madonna with the Yarnwinder Wikimedia Commons

Leonardo da Vinci's Salvator Mundi, that was sold for a record $450.3 million is not "the last da Vinci". Two other paintings, containing the image of Virgin Mary with baby Jesus on her lap, holding a cross-shaped stick that is used to wind yarn which gave the painting the title The Madonna of the Yarnwinder exists.

One of the painting is also known as the Buccleuch Madonna and is seated at the National Galleries of Scotland since 2009. The painting belongs to a long-term loan by the Duke of Buccleuch and has been a part of the family for the last 250 years, reports the museum. The painting carried a value of $65 million. It, however, was stolen in 2003 from Drumlanrig Castle in Scotland and fortunately was recovered four years later.

The second painting is the Lansdowne Madonna named after the English nobles who owned the painting in the 18th and 19th centuries. It is now a part of the private collection of New York's Wildenstein & Co.

Madonna with the Yarnwinder Buccleuch version
Madonna with the Yarnwinder Buccleuch version Wikimedia Commons

One of these paintings was commissioned by Florimond Robertet who was King Louis XII's administrator before da Vinci left Milan in 1499. The other painting was kept in his studio. Technical analysis of the pictures proves that the painter worked simultaneously on both the pictures as the hair and the moist eyes look similar in both the paintings.

Various copies of Madonna with the Yarnwinder
Various copies of Madonna with the Yarnwinder where Madonna is not wearing the turban and has different facial features. Wikimedia Commons

The difference, however, is in the background. The Buccleuch Madonna has a seascape in the background with an island whereas the Lansdowne Madonna has an Alpine range providing a Mona Lisa like vibe.

Various representations of Madonna with the Yarnwinder
Various representations of Madonna with the Yarnwinder by da Vinci. Wikimedia Commons

According to Martin Kemp, a da Vinci scholar and emeritus research professor of art history at Oxford University in the U.K, both the paintings definitely belongs to Leonardo da Vinci, but not every brushstroke can be attributed to the painter. Robert Simon, an art historian and dealer who helped in the rediscovery of Salvator Mundi, is of the view that da Vinci's students might have worked with him on his projects at that time.

Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519), Salvator Mundi, painted circa 1500. 25⅞ x 18 in (65.7 x 45.7 cm). Sold for $450,312,500 in the Post-War & Contemporary Art Evening Sale on 15 November 2017 at Christie's in New York
Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519), Salvator Mundi, painted circa 1500. 25⅞ x 18 in (65.7 x 45.7 cm). Sold for $450,312,500 in the Post-War & Contemporary Art Evening Sale on 15 November 2017 at Christie's in New York Christie's
Madonna with the child, Luis de Morales
Madonna with the child, Luis de Morales. Wikimedia Commons

Speaking of the market value of the paintings, this last piece by the Renaissance painter might be sold at a record-breaking price. Otto Naumann, an Old Master dealer in New York believes that the paintings can draw $200 million and more.

Rest during the Flight to Egypt
Rest during the Flight to Egypt. Wikimedia Commons

The Madonna of the Yarnwinder became a part of the Buccleuch family collection in 1767 after the third duke married Lady Elizabeth Montagu who inherited a good number of art collection from her parents the Duke and Duchess of Montagu who previously purchased the painting at an auction in Paris in 1756. It is however attributed to da Vinci at the National Galleries of Scotland.