During his short stay in Rome, the young Cretan master Domeniko Teotokopuli, world-renowned by the name of El Greco, is most notable for his growth as a portraitist.
Portrait of Vincenzo Anastasi became the pinnacle of his work of the Roman period. This order defied the skill of the young artist. In all likelihood, earlier he did not paint large portraits in full growth, moreover, so official in nature. Vincenzo Anastasi, a Maltese knight, was appointed “sergente maggiore” – the foreman Castel Sant Angelo in 1575. Probably the portrait was commissioned to commemorate this event.
Despite the fact that young El Greco performed portraits with great skill, to this day there were few portraits written in the Roman period. Probably he received few orders because the Titian manner in which he imitated was not widely recognized at that time.