Lorenzo Lotto’s Portraits at The National Gallery, London

Lorenzo Lotto’s Portraits at The National Gallery, London

Venetian painter Lorenzo Lotto of the late Renaissance spent most of his life and career living and working away from Venice. Though considered a rival of Titian, Lotto’s works were overlooked after his death — until the American art historian Bernard Berenson wrote a book about him in 1895 that put him back on the spotlight.

The National Gallery in London owns four of Lotto’s work and has devoted a (free) show to the artist in its new exhibition spaces. The spaces focus on the genre the artist is most known for: portraiture.

The first room is dedicated to his early works, which demonstrated incredible skill and dexterity. Yet, his portraits have something slightly stilted about them. The largest painting in the first gallery is “The Virgin in Glory between Saints Anthony Abbot and Louis of Toulouse,” where the influence of Bellini on the young Lotto is still very visible. 

Room two focuses on Lotto’s time in Bergamo, near Milan, where he became something of a man about town and got commissions to do portraits of the wealthy upper and middle classes. He was at the peak of his success. The portraits still look posed and not very natural. On display is the “Portrait of a Man with a Rosary” (about 1520) — the man is obviously wealthy and has a lynx-lined coat, yet he also has the look of someone who has lived, and his eyes convey a sense of subtle compassion.

At the center of this room is his famous portrait of Andrea Odoni (featured on the exhibition’s poster), a wealthy Milanese who settled in Venice and who was a famous collector of paintings and sculptures but also ancient coins and vases.

On the wall across from the Odoni portrait is the star Lotto from The National Gallery’s own collection: “Portrait of a Woman Inspired by Lucretia” (about 1530-3). It shows a lavishly dressed Venetian woman holding up a drawing of the Roman heroine Lucretia, who was raped by a prince despite being a married, and who took her own life in despair. 

For more details visit: https://in.blouinartinfo.com/news/story/3464898/lorenzo-lottos-portraits-at-national-gallery-london

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Founder: Louise Blouin  

 

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