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The exhibition

Lorenzo Lotto
March 2 - june 12, 2012
Curated by Giovanni Carlo Federico Villa

Lorenzo Lotto, a shy and retiring yet talented 30-year-old painter, was summoned to Rome by Pope Julius II in 1509. Trading his peaceful provincial life in the Veneto and the Marche for the huge building site of Renaissance classicism on which such masters as Bramante, Bramantino and Cesare da Sesto from Lombardy, Sodoma and Beccafumi from Siena, the divine Michelangelo and, above all, Raphael and his pupils were already working, the Venetian was assigned to work with Raphael.
Barely a year later, however, this man, who was to describe himself at sixty-two as "alone, without loyal governance and very disturbed in the mind", threw in the towel and resumed the itinerant life, an outcast partly of his own making, partly of others', ending his days as a lay brother in the Holy House of Loreto in the Marche. In the meantime, the great undertaking in the Vatican had been entrusted in its entirety to Raphael.
After the major monographic exhibitions devoted to Lorenzo Lotto's work in Venice in 1963 and in Bergamo, Paris and Washington in 1998, the Scuderie del Quirinale is now preparing to host a tight retrospective covering every aspect - from devotional works to large altarpieces - of the art of this extraordinary painter, who lived the life of a recluse in a Rome that never managed to fully understand him.
The exhibition will cover the entire life and artistic career of Lorenzo Lotto (enclosed within a triangle running from Treviso, via Bergamo, to a handful of small towns in the Marche), highlighting the poetic qualities of an artist who, though born in the 15th century, managed in a thoroughly original and independent fashion to reconcile the traditional elements of the great painting of his era with certain aspects that already herald the great age of the Baroque.
After his initiation into the evocative compositional style of Giovanni Bellini, Lorenzo learned from Antonello da Messina (through Alvise Vivarini) to probe the human soul, in order to portray it on a stage where his first true source of inspiration was that great German artist Albrecht Dürer. One has but to think of his flashes of cold light or of the way in which he cuts through the levels of perspective, the very opposite of the soft tones and fusion of colors so typical, for instance, of his contemporary Giorgione.
The rhythm underlying Lotto's composition, on the other hand, is both fast and tight, underscored by the way in which his figures' gazes cross, by their varied stances, often immersed in disc0lored atmospheres but linked to one another by his realism of detail, and with a vision of nature which he experienced as something mysterious and disturbing (his inspiration here coming from such painters as Grünewald and Hans Holbein).

The exhibition at the Scuderie del Quirinale will be telling the story of this complex personality through a selection of works that are crucial to achieve an understanding and appreciation of his artistic career.