Secret Picasso painting found HIDDEN beneath famous artwork – after strange 'wrinkle' was spotted

DRAWINGS by legendary artist Pablo Picasso have been discovered hidden beneath one of his most famous paintings.

The sketches of a mug and what could be a newspaper were scribbled on a canvas eventually used by the Spanish genius for his 1922 work "Still Life".

Picasso, who is thought to have made roughly 50,000 artworks during his lifetime, was known to reuse canvases by painting over previous drawings.

The artist would typically scribble something in pencil before painting directly over it and incorporating the previous work into the new one.

The new find by researchers at the Art Institute of Chicago is unusual in that he appears to have blocked the drawing from view using a "thick white layer" of paint before crafting the abstract piece, Live Science reports.

Experts at the institute, where Still Life hangs, found sketches of a pitcher, a mug and a rectangular object that may be a newspaper under its paint.

The objects appear to be laid out on a tabletop or the seat of a chair, the team wrote in a paper published in the journal SN Applied Sciences.

Their shock discovery came after carrying out high-tech scans of the artwork to peer beneath its brush strokes.

"X-ray and infrared imaging revealed that Picasso had originally painted a neo-classical still life on the canvas," researchers wrote.

"He applied a lead-white-based priming layer over the first composition before painting the linear abstract Still Life dated February 4, 1922."

Researchers were attempting to investigate Picasso's painting techniques when they made the surprise revelation.

The surrealist master used a complex layering technique as he painted that left strange wrinkles and other blemishes on his works.

Still Life is one such work, sporting multiple wrinkles across its canvas apparently by the coating of multiple layers of paint.

Experts did not speculate as to why Picasso may have covered up his initial drawing.

They said they were reasonably certain the sketches were his as they bare resemblance to other Picasso drawings, such as some that currently hang in the Gothenburg Museum of Art in Sweden.

Doodles hidden under Picasso masterpieces have been discovered before.

In 2014, experts found a portrait of a mysterious man behind his painting of a bathing woman in The Blue Room.

Hidden sketches of landscapes penned by another artist have been found under Picasso's painting La Miséreuse Accroupie (otherwise known as The Crouching Beggar).

In other news, mysterious hidden drawings by Leonardo da Vinci were found beneath one of his masterpieces last year.

Another major historical secret was recently unlocked: A Bristol academic claims to have finally decoded the Voynich manuscript, the "world's most mysterious text".

The Voynich manuscript isn't the only document baffling experts – archaeologists are trying to unlock the secrets of the Dead Sea "copper scroll" to uncover lost treasure.

What do you think of Pablo's sketches? Let us know in the comments!

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