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St. Paul

El Greco (Domenikos Theotokopoulos), Greek (active Italy and Spain), 1541–1614
Oil on canvas
Place made
Valencia, Spain, Europe
Current Location
On View, Gallery 236E
27 1/2 x 22 in. (69.9 x 55.9 cm)
framed: 27 3/4 x 22 1/4 in. (70.5 x 56.5 cm)
Credit Line
Museum Purchase
Public Domain
Object Number
Luminously lit draperies and elongated proportions distinguish this image of the Apostle Paul. The saint’s right hand embraces his sword while his left hand reveals a Greek inscription on the paper he holds. It reads, “To Titus, ordained first Bishop of the Church of the Cretans,” a reference to Paul’s letter to Titus. Born in Crete, El Greco worked in Venice and Rome before settling in Toledo, Spain. There he produced several series of paintings that represented Christ’s apostles as single, half-length figures. His Venetian training can be discerned in the loose brushwork and lush color. By the end of the 16th century, El Greco was renowned for his brilliant color, distinctive presentation, and the elongated proportions of his figures.
Don Jesús Lacuadra, Valencia, Spain

Don Federico Vañó, Valencia, Spain, acquired from Don Jesús Lacuadra [1]

1913 - 1919
M. Knoedler & Co., New York, NY, and Galerie Trotti & Cie, Paris, France (owned jointly) [2]

1919 - 1936
Mr. and Mrs. J. Horace Harding, New York, NY, purchased from M. Knoedler & Co. [3]

1936 -
Saint Louis Art Museum, purchased from Mrs. J. Horace Harding, through M. Knoedler & Co. [4]

The main source of this provenance are stock books from the M. Knoedler & Co. records [M. Knoedler & Co. records, approximately 1848-1971, The Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles, Accession no. 2012.M.54]. Exceptions and other supporting documents are noted.

[1] According to the 1908 catalogue raisonné by Manuel B. Cossio, the painting belonged to D. Federico Vañó of Sorni, 2, Valencia, Spain. Vañó acquired it from D. Jesús Lacuadra of Quevedo 16, Valencia [Cossio, Manuel B. "El Greco." Madrid: Victoriano Suarez, 1908, cat no. 274, p. 593].

[2] According to Knoedler painting stock book 6, the painting entered M. Knoedler & Co. as stock number 13126 in February 1913. It is listed as being co-owned with Trotti & Cie, Paris [copy, SLAM document files].

[3] The painting sold to J. Horace Harding in January 1919, as noted in Knoedler sales book 11 [copy, SLAM document files]. After J. Horace Harding’s death in 1929, the painting passed by inheritance to his wife, Mrs. J. Horace Harding. In March 1935, the painting was put on commission, number CA799, to Knoedler by Mrs. J. Horace Harding from the Estate of Mr. J. Horace Harding, according to Knoedler commission book 3 [copy, SLAM document files].

[4] Invoice dated January 6, 1936 from M. Knoedler & Co. [SLAM document files]. Minutes of the Administrative Board of Control of the City Art Museum, January 16, 1936.
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