Annunciation (c.1600; Spain) by El Greco

Annunciation - El Greco - c.1600; Spain

Artwork Information

ArtistEl Greco
Datec.1600; Spain
Dimensions91 x 66.5 cm
Art MovementMannerism (Late Renaissance)
Current LocationToledo Museum of Art, Toledo, OH, US

About Annunciation

The artwork “Annunciation” by El Greco, created around 1600 in Spain, is an oil painting on canvas that belongs to the Mannerism movement of the Late Renaissance. It measures 91 cm by 66.5 cm and is a religious painting. The artwork is currently housed at the Toledo Museum of Art in Toledo, Ohio, United States.

The painting depicts the biblical scene known as the Annunciation, where the angel Gabriel announces to the Virgin Mary that she will conceive and become the mother of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. In the artwork, the Angel Gabriel is shown descending from above with grand, outstretched wings, pointing toward heaven, indicative of the divine message being delivered. Gabriel is dressed in a flowing yellow and white robe, adorned with flowers symbolizing purity and divinity. Mary, on the other hand, is depicted as surprised or in awe, seated with her hands raised in a gesture of acceptance and humility. She wears traditional garments in deep red and blue, which are often associated with her in religious iconography. The setting includes a small vase with lilies on a nearby table, which are another symbol of purity and directly associated with the Virgin Mary. The overall composition, colors, and the dynamic portrayal of the figures highlight El Greco’s dramatic and emotive approach, characteristic of Mannerist tendencies to emphasize elegance and heightened emotion over naturalistic representation.

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