Art print by Zunuzin

Martyrdom of St. Maurice (El Greco Improvisation)

Original painting artwork description:
Year created: 2008
The original artwork is oil painting on canvas, size 66.1x45.3 in (168x115 cm), and is available for sale. Buy original on Singulart

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History of the Martyrdom of St. Maurice by El Greco

El Greco - The Martyrdom of St. Maurice

El Greco
"The Martyrdom of St. Maurice", 1580-1582
Real Monasterio, Escorial, Spain

Commissioned by Philip II, late 1570 or early 1580, for the chapel of the Saint in the church of the Escorial.

The subject of the martyrdom of the soldier Saint with his legions, for his refusal to worship the pagan gods. was appropriate for the Escorial, the real centre of the crusade for the Faith. This subject expresses the conviction of faith that inspired the crusade; the Allegory of the Holy League, the militant spirit of the crusade itself. The ecstatic character of this "invitation to death" (Ortega y Gasset) is expressed. The physical side of the martyrdom is not emphasised, is no more than symbolised by the small group on the left comprising the one martyred figure, the figure, in the pose of his Christ of the Baptism, awaiting martyrdom and the grand figure in back-view of the executioner. The impression of the ranks of the Saint's army awaiting martyrdom is similar to that of the multitude in adoration in the Adoration of the Name of Jesus. The two paintings are related in composition, and in their expression of devotional fervour.

The grand group of Saint Maurice and his companions owes much to the heroic figure style of Rome. There is, however, no emphasis on weight or volume. There is also no emphasis on spatial depth. Via

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22.8x48 in (58x122 cm), archival pigment print on canvas, signed by author, limited edition of 100