(b. 1541, Candia, d. 1614, Toledo)

The Agony in the Garden

Oil on canvas, 86 x 50
Diocesan Museum, Cuenca

There are many versions of The Agony in the Garden painted by El Greco and his workshop, it was one of his most successful inventions. He painted the subject both as a horizontal and as a vertical composition. The version in the Cuenca museum is a fine example of the vertical type. There are other vertical versions in Andújar, Spain, in Budapest and in Buenos Aires. It is noteworthy that the Cuenca version is not only smaller but also considerably more vertical than the other three in this group. The increased verticality yields a more heightened tension and augments the emotional impact of the scene. The intervention of El Greco's workshop can be assumed in all these paintings.