El Greco
El martirio de san Mauricio y la legión tebana
Oil on linen
448 x 301 cm

El Greco’s paintings are full of tangents: points where two things just touch, without overlapping. This is a very deliberate compositional choice which contradicts the creation of illusionistic space. It gives something to the abstract rhythm of the painting, though, and is one of many techniques for bringing attention back to the surface. I have begun to experiment with borrowing the tangent, and using it in my own compositions.