Born into a family of artists that included Palma il Vecchio and Bonifazio Veronese, Palma il Giovane enjoyed a long and distinguished career. His precocious talent was recognized by Guidobaldo II della Rovere, Duke of Urbino, who summoned the young artist to his court when he saw a fifteen-year-old Palma copying Titian’s Martyrdom of Saint Lawrence in 1564. It is thought he went to Pesaro and then to Rome, where he stayed for around eight years, returning to Venice in 1574 and possibly working in the studio of Titian. After the latter’s death, Palma was tasked with completing Titian’s unfinished Pietà (now Venice, Gallerie dell’Accademia), a sign of the high regard in which he was held; Palma proudly inscribed the picture 'QUOD TITIANVS INCHOATVM RELIQUIT PALMA REVERENTVR ABSOLVIT DEOQ. DICAVIT OPVS' ('What Titian left unfinished, Palma reverently completed, dedicating the work to God'), seemingly identifying himself in the process as the heir apparent to Titian’s supremacy in the city. Key commissions followed shortly after in the 1580s, including the great oval Venice crowned by Victory for the ceiling of the Sala del Maggior Consiglio in the Doge’s Palace and the cycle for the sacristy of San Giacomo dall’Orio, completed in 1581. Whilst less attention has been given to his portraiture, he was clearly capable of excelling in the genre. This picture can be compared, in its lively characterisation and confident handling, to the Portrait of a collector (Birmingham, City Museum and Art Gallery), a portrait once attributed to Annibale Carracci, with the sitter shown in a similar pose.