Saturday, November 29, 2014

El Greco and The Cretan paradox: mystic...or not

Good article on El Greco:
The Cretan ParadoxIt's riveting and highly influential, but El Greco's work never quite fit. Could the reason lie in his birthplace?
By Morgan Meis....El Greco’s bodies are longer and stretchier than those we encounter in daily life. He portrayed the human form as you might see it in a vision or a mystical trance. He looked at painting, it would seem, in the same way that his contemporary — the great mystic Saint Theresa of Ávila — looked at prayer. They were both seeking spiritual ecstasy.
Except, there is no evidence that El Greco had any interest in spiritual visions or mystical ecstasies. Instead, he read boring tracts of Counter-Reformation theology and studied Renaissance art theory (we still have his library). El Greco was no Baroque painter, but he was no mystic either.
What to do with an artist who slips through every explanation?...full article

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