Lotto, one of the most important 16th century Venetian painters, lived
an unsettled life. He grew up in Venice under the influence of Giovanni
Bellini (reputedly Lotto got his professional training in his studio)
and the works of Antonello da Messina. Then he traveled to Marches, where
he saw the works of Melozzo da Forli and Luca
Signorelli. These sharpened his understanding of perspective and precise
presentation of human movement.
Then came his work in the Vatican (1509-1511), of which no traces remain.
The artist was recognized while working in Bergamo (1513-1525), where he
painted altarpieces, portraits and fresco cycles. The perfect example of
his work is Susanna and the Elders.
(1517), one of Lotto’s masterpieces. In his religious works Lotto abandoned
traditional patterns of composition, e.g. The
Annunciation. (c. 1527). Lotto was also an outstanding portraitist,
though we do not know anything about the people he depicted. The artist
preserved for history their appearances and sometimes their names, but
not their stories.
After Bergamo he tried to settle in Venice, but his lack of success in
his native city caused him to retire to the Marches in 1549. In his last
years, his painting became hesitant and uncertain. Lotto supposedly went
blind. Already an old man, he took vows as a lay-brother and entered the
Sanctuary of the Santa Casa in Loreto.
Lotto: Rediscovered Master of the Renaissance by David Alan
Brown, Peter Humfrey (Contributor), Mauro Lucco. Yale Univ Pr, 1997.
Lotto by Peter Humfrey, Lorenzo Lotto. Yale Univ Pr, 1997.
Lotto: The Frescoes in the Oratorio Suardi at Trescore by Francesca
Cortesi Bosco. Skira, 1998.
Lotto by Jacques Bonnet, Michael Taylor. Art Books Intl Ltd,