These Famous Paintings Were Hiding Dark Secrets That Shocked Everybody When Discovered

The Renaissance period was one period of time in history when art and literature came to the forefront and became the driving mechanism that shaped popular culture and opinions. Many talented people took to various forms of art to symbolically state their mind. This gave us a number of beautiful artworks that have not only survived through the centuries but have also made a name for themselves and are today worth millions.

However, as the popular saying goes, not everything is what it looks like. And some of these paintings have some very dark secrets hidden within them. They weren’t known for a long time and it’s only relatively recently, with the help of modern technological tools, that experts have been able to identify these secrets.

The Renaissance Period brought art and literature to the forefront…


Since then, a lot of artworks have found their way into the world through some very talented painters.

However, some paintings hold some very dark secrets…

And it’s only because of modern imaging technology that we’ve been able to detect them. And here are a few such paintings which have dark secrets.

1. Hendrick Van Anthonissen’s “Beach Scene”

This Dutch painter’s work shows a bunch of people gathered on the beach for apparently no reason. However, what had been aesthetically hiding in the picture and was only discovered during the restoration of the painting, is that there was a dead whale in the painting as well.

2. Picasso’s “The Old Guitarist.”


During his life, Picasso often found himself in financially sticky situations. And because of that, he had to make do with whatever he had to make paintings, and that meant painting over already used canvases. This probably explains why the x-ray print of Picasso’s ‘The Old Guitarist’ shows a portrait of a lady carrying a toddler, and participating in some sort of a ritual.

3. Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingre’s “Portrait of Jacques Marquet de Montbreton de Norvins”

This is, beyond doubt, one of the most important and influential paintings of the time. The portrait is that of the manager of Police of Rome after Napoleon conquered it. Researchers say that the bust in the painting is that of Napoleon’s son.

4. Jean-François Millet’s “L’Angelus”

The painting shows two peasants looking down at a basket of potatoes. However, x-ray imaging revealed that a coffin once used to be in place of the basket, which raises the question, are they really potatoes in the basket, or a dead child?

5. Gustave Courbet’s “Preparation of the Bride”

This incomplete painting shows a bride being prepared for marriage. However, x-ray imaging revealed that the painting once used to be of a funeral, and the bride used to be the deceased.