This striking portrait of a Venetian Senator has been considered by Roberto Contini as one of the most beautiful portraits by Domenico Tintoretto (written communication to the owner, 5 March 2002). According to Contini the portrait is close in style to Domenico’s pair of group portraits of circa 1591, showing the members of the Scuola dei Mercanti (Accademia, Venice). He has pointed out that the sitter of the present painting might be identical with the sitter in the pendant with figures facing left, in the highest row on the left side. Domenico’s beautiful portrait of Giovanni Paolo Contarini, sold with Christie’s New York, 4 July 2014, lot 18 ($ 173,000) is stylistically comparable to the present painting.
The son of Jacopo Tintoretto, Domenico Tintoretto trained in his father's studio and entered the Venetian painters' guild aged only seventeen. He assisted his father on prestigious projects but soon undertook independent commissions, for the Doge's Palace, various Venetian scuole and local churches such as San Giorgio Maggiore. Although an able history painter, Domenico became particularly sought after for his portraits: He recorded the features of the most important individuals of his day, from Margaret of Austria, later Queen of Spain, to Vincenzo I Gonzaga, 4th Duke of Mantua.