El Greco: Feast in the House of Simon
El Greco's "Feast in the House of Simon" creates a visual story of the last supper. It has similar and completely different attributes of a painting I'm more familiar with, Da Vinci's "Last Supper." The reason for thinking this is because of the what is taking place in the scene and for the story I recall learning as a child. The similarities I notice first is seeing Jesus as an important main focal point being placed in the center. As I look farther into El Greco's painting I notice how different it is. .
El Greco uses a style that reminds me of an aerial perspective where he renders depth in the painting by modifying the tone, hues, and clarity of objects are perceived to withdraw from the picture plane. I think this gives it a rounder more life-like appearance and motion as to Da Vinci's, which I feel is flatter and slower. He takes somewhat of a chiaroscuro approach. Using darker colors to make a dramatic scene, as he pairs the brightest colors and highlights contrasting against. This is especially evident in the robes worn by Jesus and his disciples. This contrast creates action, depth, and movement which is complimented by their gestures and facial expressions. At first my eyes are drawn to Jesus in the center, but then I find the colors of the robes and pointing of hands directing me back and forth through the painting.
Two things I think are very important to the perception of this painting are the color contrasts and size. When I look closer I'm able to notice brush strokes, textures, and an attention to detail. Analyzing "Feast in the House of Simon" at this scale, 59"x 39," has a much more profound effect on me. This painting would not have the same effect if it was smaller or viewed from a book or website. I also notice the addition of two more disciples and a women, whom I believe is Mary Magdalene. I believe Judas is sitting on the opposite side of the table from Jesus. He...
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