Nippon homes in on Mona

Famous da Vinci portrait gets her own space

PARIS — Leonardo da Vinci could never have dreamed that his most famous painting would be getting a luxurious new home thanks to a Japanese television network.

The “Mona Lisa” is almost 500 years old, but a perk in the works proves a nice smile will go a long way.

On Tuesday, the enigmatic portrait da Vinci painted on a piece of pine in 1506 was moved from its customary spot to temporary quarters on the second floor of the Louvre. Architect Lorenzo Piqueras is refurbishing the museum’s Salon des Etats for a bigger, better reinstallation in 2003. Nippon Television Network is paying for the 25 million franc ($3.6 million) embellishment.

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