"The Greek"

El Greco, "the Greek". The artist's original name was Doménikos Theotokópoulos (1541 – 1614). He was born in Crete. After the years he lived and worked in Venice and Rome, Italy, he moved to Spain in 1577. He produced his best known works here.

"The man known as El Greco was a Greek artist whose emotional style vividly expressed the passion of Counter-Reformation Spain. Here at the National Gallery is the most important collection of his work outside that country, which was his adopted home.

The haunting intensity of El Greco's paintings—resulting from their unnaturally long figures and strong contrasts of color and light—has invited a kind of mythmaking about his life and art. Following his death, El Greco's work fell into obscurity and, after its rediscovery in the nineteenth century, was often misunderstood. El Greco has been called a prophet of modern art, a mystic, and even a man whose sight was distorted by astigmatism, all misconceptions that have clouded understanding of his distinctive but deliberate style." (Overview on the website of The National Gallery of Art, U.S.A.)


The Vision of Saint John, 1608-14