Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne is practising a Mona Lisa smile to court popularity after a series of U-turns following his March Budget.
Osborne's recent clash with Ed Balls at Prime Minister's Question Time has further added to his unpopularity.
'George's unfortunate half-smile, caught on television,' said one Tory MP, 'hasn't done him any good. The public don't like smirking, sneering politicians.'
Osborne is believed to be spending hours with a mirror and a copy of the painting trying to copy the smile.
But art historians have cast doubt on Osborne's chances of success.
'Lisa del Giocondo was a gentle, modest and respected Florentine wife and mother,' said Giles de Shapland from Sotherby's, 'whereas Osborne is an over privileged, sneering, snobbish arsehole. I don't see a painting of him ever hanging in the Musée du Louvre - unless they open a Rogues' Gallery.'