As well as a painter, Rusiñol was a founding member of the avant-garde Els Quatre Gats group in Barcelona and an avid and polemical Modernist writer calling for the regeneration of the arts in Catalonia, from painting to literature. Interestingly, and not coincidentally, the title of the present work was also the title of one of Rusiñol's theatre plays, El pati blau of 1903. The stark lines and vibrant colours of the painting are perhaps symbolic of this new cultural departure.
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