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El Greco
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    (1541-April 7, 1614)
    Born in Crete, Greece
    Birth name was Domenikos Theotokopoulos
    Settled in Toledo, Spain (1577)
    Notable paintings include 'El Espolio,' 'The Assumption of the Virgin,' 'The Burial of the Count of Orgaz,' 'View of Toledo' and 'Opening of the Fifth Seal'
    He said that Michelangelo 'was a good man, but he did not know how to paint,' and wrote to the Pope, offering to paint over the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.
    He had a son out of wedlock.
    His works featured elongated human figures, which various critics have attributed to astigmatism, latent homosexuality or marijuana use.
    Due to disputes by art scholars, the number of works attributed to him ranges from 285 to 829.
    His work was largely ignored for centuries after his death.
    He influenced the Expressionists and Cubists of the 20th century.
    The New York Times noted 'To Greeks, El Greco became the quintessential Greek painter; to the Spanish, the quintessential Spaniard.'
    He inspired a series of poems by Rainer Maria Rilke.
    Art critic Roger Fry called him 'an old master who is not merely modern, but actually appears a good many steps ahead of us.' (1920)

Credit: C. Fishel

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