Louvre: Sketches found on back of da Vinci painting

PARIS (AP) – Researchers have found three previously unknown sketches on the back of a painting Leonardo da Vinci that may have been drawn by the Renaissance master.

Paris’ Louvre Museum says the sketches feature a horse head, part of a skull and baby Jesus with a lamb. Researchers using infrared cameras found them on the back of the painting titled The Virgin and Child with Saint Anne.

In a statement issued on Dec. 18, the Louvre said the style was reminiscent of Leonardo’s. Researchers are working to determine whether he drew them.

The sketches are barely visible to the eye. They were discovered during an in-depth examination using an infrared camera that picks up traces of carbon-based pigments often used for sketches.

The painting is in the Louvre’s collection.

Copyright 2008 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-ES-12-23-08 1019EST