Inspired by Spain's rich Moorish heritage, the present work forms part of a series of works set in the Alhambra Palace in Villegas's native Andalusia (see also fig. 1). Villegas studied at the School of Fine Arts of Seville before being sent by his patron, the Marques de Polavieja, to Madrid to study under Federico de Madrazo, Eduardo Rosales, and Mariano Fortuny. It was Fortuny who introduced Villegas to the Orientalist genre and at whose prompting he travelled to Morocco with Francisco Peralta de Campo. In the present work the Alhambra forms the perfect backdrop for the costumes, carpets, weapons and objects he would have seen and recorded on his travels.
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