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# The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco

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04 Nov 2011, 23:32
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The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco (1541-1614) are systematically elongated. In El Greco's time, the intentional distortion of the human figures was unprecedented in European Painting. Consequently, some critics have suggested that El Greco had astigmatism, a type of visual impairment that resulted in people appearing to him in the distorted way that is characteristic of his paintings. However, this suggestion cannot be the explanation, because _______________________
A. Several twentieth century artists have consciously adopted from El Greco's paintings the systematic elongation of the human form.
B. Some people do have elongated bodies somewhat like those depicted in El Greco's portraits.
C. If El Greco had astigmatism, then, relative to how people looked to him, the elongated figures in his paintings would have appeared to him to be distorted.
D. Even if El Greco had astigmatism, there would have been no correction for it available in the period in which he lived.
E. There were non-European artists even in El Greco's time who included in their works human figures that were intentionally distorted.

Premise 1: The figures in El Greco's paintings are systematically enlongated
Premise 2: In his time, the intentional enlongated never happen in the ealier
Premise 3: Astigmatism is a type of visual impairment that results in people appearing to patient in the enlogated way...

A. Strengthen one
B. Elongating figures in painting of some people do not prove that El Greco did not have astigmatism, maybe they all had astigmatism => irrelevant
D. There is no correction for astigmatism cannot prove that El Greco did not have this disease
E. Is the same with B
C. If El Greco had astigmatism, then, relative to how people looked to him, the elongated figures in his paintings would have appeared to him to be distorted. => What did thisilsentence say? According to my understand, the figures in El Greco painting s will be distorted double times through 1st is elongated figures and 2nd El Greco's eyes (because of astigmatism) to become normal.
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Re: The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco [#permalink]

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26 Nov 2011, 04:33
C
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Re: The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco [#permalink]

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01 Dec 2011, 21:56
confused btw b n c
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Re: The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco [#permalink]

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21 Jan 2012, 04:01
My take is also C.
Basically we need to prove some people suggestion - that the artist had astigmatism - is wrong.

Now, think this way: artist painted what he SAW. If he had astigmatism, everything will look distorted, INCLUDING HIS OWN PAINTINGS, though they were NOT elongated in reality. This is exactly what C says.
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Re: The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco [#permalink]

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21 Jan 2012, 20:57
Clear C
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Re: The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco [#permalink]

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30 May 2013, 02:28
noboru wrote:
The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco (1541-1614) are systematically elongated. In El Greco's time, the intentional distortion of the human figures was unprecedented in European Painting. Consequently, some critics have suggested that El Greco had astigmatism, a type of visual impairment that resulted in people appearing to him in the distorted way that is characteristic of his paintings. However, this suggestion cannot be the explanation, because _______________________
A. Several twentieth century artists have consciously adopted from El Greco's paintings the systematic elongation of the human form.
B. Some people do have elongated bodies somewhat like those depicted in El Greco's portraits.
C. If El Greco had astigmatism, then, relative to how people looked to him, the elongated figures in his paintings would have appeared to him to be distorted.
D. Even if El Greco had astigmatism, there would have been no correction for it available in the period in which he lived.
E. There were non-European artists even in El Greco's time who included in their works human figures that were intentionally distorted.

El Greco's portrait are elongated. While El Greco time, the intentional distortion was not popular. Therefore, El Greco had visual impairment.
The fill in blank is the missing premise that support for the conclusion that El Creco didn't have visual impairment.

Looking at options:
A mentioned about twentieth century artists --> irrelevant --> A is incorrect
B said that some people have elongated bodies like those in El Creco's paintings. Therefore, El Creco's portraits reflected actual models who are elongated, not because of his visual impairment --> B is correct
C discussed about how El Creco looks at the paintings, not how he made the paintings --> C is incorrect
D mentioned about correction for El Creco's visual impairment, not support the conclusion that actually he didn't have visual impairment --> incorrect
E mentioned "non-European artists" while The passage discussed about European artists --> irrelevant --> incorrect.
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Re: The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco [#permalink]

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25 Jul 2013, 01:15
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On reading this question in forums, I found that some people thought this was a C&E argument and felt that providing an alternate cause will serve as a weakener. However, we do not want to weaken the argument.
We want to make sure that this explanation is not the correct explanation. i.e in c&e terms, X led to Y is the conclusion.
we have to prove X cannot lead to Y.
Choice B is talking about some people-not as people in general as a whole.
so maybe this choice does throw some doubt over the conclusion, but does not destroy it.
choice e, providing the example of non european arguments, says that they intentionally distorted the images. Again, this serves as a weakener. but does not destroy the conclusion completely.
To understand choice C, refer to the attachment
Attachments

el-greco_CROGVR2.pptx [49.62 KiB]

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Re: The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco [#permalink]

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25 Jul 2013, 11:25
Expert's post
This argument asks us to weaken the stated conclusion. Therefore, we are looking for new information which shows that the conclusion - that the elongated figures were due to his astigmatism - based on the premise that elongated figures were not normal in the art world.

noboru wrote:
The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco (1541-1614) are systematically elongated. In El Greco's time, the intentional distortion of the human figures was unprecedented in European Painting. Consequently, some critics have suggested that El Greco had astigmatism, a type of visual impairment that resulted in people appearing to him in the distorted way that is characteristic of his paintings. However, this suggestion cannot be the explanation, because _______________________
A. Several twentieth century artists have consciously adopted from El Greco's paintings the systematic elongation of the human form.the fact that people copied him afterward cannot speak to why he painted what he did when he did
B. Some people do have elongated bodies somewhat like those depicted in El Greco's portraits.This was still not the norm in painting and while it may work, we would need to know that El Greco knew of these people for it to be truly strong.
C. If El Greco had astigmatism, then, relative to how people looked to him, the elongated figures in his paintings would have appeared to him to be distorted.This works because it is an explanation about how the astigmatism would not have explained the figures as they would not have looked like people to him either
D. Even if El Greco had astigmatism, there would have been no correction for it available in the period in which he lived.while this may be true, it is doesn't affect whether the astigmatism caused his figures to be distorted and therefore can't weaken
E. There were non-European artists even in El Greco's time who included in their works human figures that were intentionally distorted. IN this case the non-European artists are irrelevant

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Re: The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco [#permalink]

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23 Aug 2013, 01:44
noboru wrote:
The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco (1541-1614) are systematically elongated. In El Greco's time, the intentional distortion of the human figures was unprecedented in European Painting. Consequently, some critics have suggested that El Greco had astigmatism, a type of visual impairment that resulted in people appearing to him in the distorted way that is characteristic of his paintings. However, this suggestion cannot be the explanation, because _______________________
A. Several twentieth century artists have consciously adopted from El Greco's paintings the systematic elongation of the human form.
B. Some people do have elongated bodies somewhat like those depicted in El Greco's portraits.
C. If El Greco had astigmatism, then, relative to how people looked to him, the elongated figures in his paintings would have appeared to him to be distorted.
D. Even if El Greco had astigmatism, there would have been no correction for it available in the period in which he lived.
E. There were non-European artists even in El Greco's time who included in their works human figures that were intentionally distorted.

I think it is C

a) Several artists adopted the elongation - that say anything about the painters disease - the artists might have adopted the techinque which El Greco got by visual impairment
b) Some prople have elongated body - does El Greco painted these people? May or may not
c)
d) No correction available - says nothing about painters impairment
e) The non-European painters may also have the visual impairment - and hence drawn elongated paintings

So only C is left out.

Whats the OA?
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Re: The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco [#permalink]

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15 Feb 2014, 15:25
While answering the question, I didn't understand C, so I went with B. But thinking more about answer C, here is my understanding

Lets say El Greco sees a 6 feet guy and due to astigmatism, he perceives him to be 12 feet (he sees things twice as long).
Now when he draws it, if he draws it to be 6 feet, then when he looks at his painting, it will look 12 feet to him, the same as how he perceives a real human.
If he draws it at 12 feet, when he looks back at his painting, he'll see it as 24 feet, which will not match the 12 feet person he visually perceives. The painting would look distorted to him.
Hence the size of a person in his paintings should match the size of the real person, so that with his astigmatism, he sees both of the same size.
Hence C makes sense. But it's really hard to get this level of understanding in 2 minutes (including time of reading question and all answers).
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Re: The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco [#permalink]

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16 Apr 2014, 21:03
noboru wrote:
Official Guide for GMAT Verbal Review, 2nd Edition

Practice Question
Question No.: 78
Page: 148
Difficulty:

Which of the following most logically completes the passage?

The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco (1541–1614) are systematically elongated. In El Greco’s time, the intentional distortion of human figures was unprecedented in European painting. Consequently, some critics have suggested that El Greco had an astigmatism, a type of visual impairment, that resulted in people appearing to him in the distorted way that is characteristic of his paintings. However, this suggestion cannot be the explanation, because______________.

(A) several twentieth-century artists have consciously adopted from El Greco’s paintings the systematic elongation of the human form
(B) some people do have elongated bodies somewhat like those depicted in El Greco’s portraits
(C) if El Greco had an astigmatism, then, relative to how people looked to him, the elongated figures in his paintings would have appeared to him to be distorted
(D) even if El Greco had an astigmatism, there would have been no correction for it available in the period in which he lived
(E) there were non-European artists, even in El Greco’s time, who included in their works human figures that were intentionally distorted

if the artist had some eye problem and he saw both a LIVE HUMAN FIGURE..... AND HIS PAINTING, SUPPOSED TO BE A REPLICA- BUT DISTORTED- HENCE DIFFERENT FROM THE ACTUAL LIVE VERSION.......

HE WOULD FIND BOTH DIFFERENT..........BUT THAT CANNOT BE THE CASE........ TO THE PAINTER BOTH THE LIVE AND PAINTED VERSION HAVE TO APPEAR SIMILAR- OTHERWISE WHAT WORTH A PAINTER OF PROMINENCE IS HE?

HENCE HE would have deliberately drawn them differently.............

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Re: The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco [#permalink]

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08 Oct 2014, 08:50
noboru wrote:
Official Guide for GMAT Verbal Review, 2nd Edition

Practice Question
Question No.: 78
Page: 148
Difficulty:

Which of the following most logically completes the passage?

The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco (1541–1614) are systematically elongated. In El Greco’s time, the intentional distortion of human figures was unprecedented in European painting. Consequently, some critics have suggested that El Greco had an astigmatism, a type of visual impairment, that resulted in people appearing to him in the distorted way that is characteristic of his paintings. However, this suggestion cannot be the explanation, because______________.

(A) several twentieth-century artists have consciously adopted from El Greco’s paintings the systematic elongation of the human form
(B) some people do have elongated bodies somewhat like those depicted in El Greco’s portraits
(C) if El Greco had an astigmatism, then, relative to how people looked to him, the elongated figures in his paintings would have appeared to him to be distorted
(D) even if El Greco had an astigmatism, there would have been no correction for it available in the period in which he lived
(E) there were non-European artists, even in El Greco’s time, who included in their works human figures that were intentionally distorted

(A) several twentieth-century artists have consciously adopted from El Greco’s paintings the systematic elongation of the human form - This does not explain because people might have adopted EG's work. And we just want to give reasoning - as to why what people suggested about EG that he has astigmatism - is wrong

(B) some people do have elongated bodies somewhat like those depicted in El Greco’s portraits - First off, its saying some people, secondly we dont know if EG just portrayed those peoples in his paintings.

(C) if El Greco had an astigmatism, then, relative to how people looked to him, the elongated figures in his paintings would have appeared to him to be distorted - This answer choice says that if he really made elongated portraits because he had astigmatism, then the elongated portraits would have appear to him even more distorted.

(D) even if El Greco had an astigmatism, there would have been no correction for it available in the period in which he lived - this doesnt affect the argument.

(E) there were non-European artists, even in El Greco’s time, who included in their works human figures that were intentionally distorted - this strengthens because it says there were no non -euporean artists who made intentionally distorted figures. Note that - in the argument it states european artists made distorted figures. But, EG was Spanish.
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Re: The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco [#permalink]

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02 Mar 2015, 12:18
Only C makes sense!
Good question!
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Re: The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco [#permalink]

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17 Mar 2015, 03:39
Choice C

Type weaken
conclusion: EL has an astigmatism
Assumption: only other people appear to him in disorted, and it does not hindrance his drawing ability in terms of drawing features.

IF the astigmatism effect his drawing ability, then the drawing feature must also appear to be disorted to certain degree.
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Re: The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco [#permalink]

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02 Jun 2016, 11:05
noboru wrote:
Official Guide for GMAT Verbal Review, 2nd Edition

Practice Question
Question No.: 78
Page: 148
Difficulty:

Which of the following most logically completes the passage?

The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco (1541–1614) are systematically elongated. In El Greco’s time, the intentional distortion of human figures was unprecedented in European painting. Consequently, some critics have suggested that El Greco had an astigmatism, a type of visual impairment, that resulted in people appearing to him in the distorted way that is characteristic of his paintings. However, this suggestion cannot be the explanation, because______________.

(A) several twentieth-century artists have consciously adopted from El Greco’s paintings the systematic elongation of the human form
(B) some people do have elongated bodies somewhat like those depicted in El Greco’s portraits
(C) if El Greco had an astigmatism, then, relative to how people looked to him, the elongated figures in his paintings would have appeared to him to be distorted
(D) even if El Greco had an astigmatism, there would have been no correction for it available in the period in which he lived
(E) there were non-European artists, even in El Greco’s time, who included in their works human figures that were intentionally distorted

Premise-1: The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco (1541–1614) are systematically elongated

Premise-2: In El Greco’s time, the intentional distortion of human figures was unprecedented in European painting.

Intermediate Conclusion: Consequently, some critics have suggested that El Greco had an astigmatism, a type of visual impairment, that resulted in people appearing to him in the distorted way that is characteristic of his paintings

Conclusion: this suggestion cannot be the explanation

To Prove: The distortion in the human figures found in the Greco’s paintings is NOT the result of visual impairment, an astigmatism.

(A) several twentieth-century artists have consciously adopted from El Greco’s paintings the systematic elongation of the human form

We are not looking forward to prove that 20th century artists ADOPTED Greco’s paintings. Logic behind this incorrect choice to make it seem correct is that IF THIS DISTORTION CAN BE ADOPTED THEN IT IS CHOICE THAT A PAINTER MAKES NOT A RESULT OF ASTIGMATISM. But as a test taker I can’t prove it. hence this fact cannot work as “TO PROVE”.

(B) some people do have elongated bodies somewhat like those depicted in El Greco’s portraits

People having elongated body is not the point of discussion BUT elongation in paintings found is intentional or due to impairment is.

(C) if El Greco had an astigmatism, then, relative to how people looked to him, the elongated figures in his paintings would have appeared to him to be distorted

This choice helps “TO PROVE”. If a painter has visual impairment then how come distortion does not occur related to how people looked at him. This proves that the distortion is intentional not resulted by astigmatism

(D) even if El Greco had an astigmatism, there would have been no correction for it available in the period in which he lived

This choice is neutral. Doesn’t help “To prove”.
Greco has astigmatism ---- Paintings have distorted figures.
Greco doesn’t astigmatism ---- Paintings have distorted figures.

(E) there were non-European artists, even in El Greco’s time, who included in their works human figures that were intentionally distorted

This could be one tricky choice. BUT if we keep the SCOPE in mind then we can eliminate it. Argument talks about EUROPEANS and this choice discuss non-European BUT no connection is provided. We have no clue whether Europeans and non-Europeans used to follow arts or cultures of each other.
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Re: The figures in portraits by the Spanish painter El Greco   [#permalink] 02 Jun 2016, 11:05

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