Having trained as a sculptor at the Academy of Fine Arts in Barcelona, in 1875 Antonio Fabrés y Costa was awarded a scholarship to complete his training in Rome. In Italy, the artist was deeply influenced by the work of other Spanish artists working in Rome at the time, including José Villegas and Mariano Fortuny whose orientalist subjects had met with great success amongst collectors. Fabrés hence abandoned sculpture and started a successful career as a painter, focusing on both Orientalist subjects and insightful social portraits. In 1892, the artist settled in Paris before moving to Mexico as head of the paintings department at The Academy of San Carlos in Mexico City. He moved back to Rome in 1907, and lived there for the remainder of his life.