Mini Biography: El Greco

Birth: 1541
Death: April 7th, 1614
Nationality: Greek
Movement: Mannerism
El Greco’s full name was Doménikos Theotokópoulos and by age 23 he was a Post-Byzantine master painter in his country of origin, Greece. However, while still in his 20’s he traveled to Venice and Rome and incorporated elements of Mannerism and Italian Renaissance painting into his work. By 1577 he had moved to Spain settling in Toledo where he created many of his best known and influential works. At the time of El Greco’s death he had owned 130 books including a bible in his native language and an annotated book written by Vasari an Italian painter, writer, and historian who essentially started the field of art history. Although El Greco and his unique style were not fully appreciated during his lifetime, or in the generations immediately following, he has been treated far more kindly by recent scholars and is considered to have influenced several artists including Cezanne, Picasso, and Franz Marc.
Some of El Greco’s notable works include: The Assumption of the Virgin (1577-1579), The Burial of the Count of Orgaz a detail of which is the header and pictured below in its entirety, and The Opening of the Fifth Seal (1608-1614.)


El Greco. The Burial of the Count of Orgaz (1586-1588)Iglesia de Santo Tomé, Toledo, Spain.

For more information on El Greco, or his artwork, visit:
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
National Gallery of Art
The Guardian