Trivium Art History

Portrait of an Old Man

Portrait of an Old Man, 1600 — El Greco,
52.7 cm46.7 cm

El Greco’s candid portraits have been consistently admired for their naturalism and psychological insight, even when his other works fell out of favor. Since about 1900 this portrait of about has been alternately accepted and rejected as a self-portrait. No indisputable evidence of the artist’s appearance is known, although El Greco appears to have cast himself in supporting roles within a few religious pictures. Those figures bear some resemblance to the present sitter but seem more virile and have white hair.

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