A museum stands near where a famous painter and sculptor once lived. The artist also took an interest in the design of the city.
The El Greco Museum holds a sizable collection of masterpieces created near the end of the Spanish Renaissance by painter, sculptor and architect El Greco. Appreciate his works spread over two buildings in Toledo which recreate the home and studio where El Greco spent much of his life and produced many of his most famous works.
These works largely focused on religious themes, but over time he lost support from ruling classes and royalty. El Greco’s interpretation of iconic figures may have prevented him from receiving the royal patronage he desired. Nevertheless, he lived well in Toledo for most of his life. Try to imagine as you view his paintings how his religious feelings may have infringed upon the sensibilities of nobility of that era.
El Greco translates as The Greek. The artist was born in Crete, with Greek heritage, and tried to portray his painted subjects with great feeling. His style began what is now identified as Mannerism in the Late Renaissance. His paintings in the museum represent his later productions painted in Toledo, including his Apostolate series. Look at View and Plan of Toledo where the artist shows his skill at also being a town designer.
Works by other artists inspired by El Greco, such as Luis Tristán, are also on display. Peruse the section dedicated to the museum’s founder, the Marquis of Vega-Inclán, who was instrumental in promoting El Greco’s work. Relax outside in the 16th-century courtyard of this refurbished museum. Concerts are held occasionally in the garden.
Take an audio tour of the museum. The site is open daily except Mondays and holidays. Purchase the admission fee online. Senior citizens, students and large families have free entry. Admission is also free in the late afternoon on Saturday and on Sunday.
El Greco Museum and gift shop are handicapped-accessible and located in the city’s Jewish Quarter near the Tagus River.