From 19 June to 30 September 2018, the Museo del Prado hosted an exhibition dedicated to the portraits of Lorenzo Lotto curated by Miguel Falomir and Enrico Maria Dal Pozzolo. It was the first expressly devoted to Lotto's activity as a portraitist, and included thirty-eight portraits alongside numerous pieces of material culture of the period, which complemented and helped to understand the meaning of the painted images. The exhibition was accompanied by a catalogue that addressed the figure of Lotto and his contribution to portraiture, while acknowledging the impossibility of encompassing the multiple approaches offered by his unique, original and highly personal approach. Following a procedure that has become customary at the Museo del Prado, from the outset the idea was to hold an international conference in parallel to complete the catalogue, a conference entitled The Portraits of Lorenzo Lotto, which took place on 24 and 25 September 2018 under the direction of Enrico Maria Dal Pozzolo.
The present book is the result of those two days, in which fifteen renowned specialists approached Lotto's portraits from very different perspectives, exploring their materiality, technique, iconography, clientele, affinities and differences with important contemporary portraitists, and their critical fortune, often reflected in copies and forgeries. The result is a more complex and subtle overview of the immense contribution to the genre of the man who was described as the "first modern portraitist", in the felicitous expression of Bernand Berenson.