It was created during or immediately after a period of study in Paris at the École des Beaux-Arts and in the studio of Jacques-Louis David. The work was donated to the Kunsthaus Zürich by Lili Usteri in 1945, and has been an integral part of the permanent exhibition ever since.
The work’s condition is problematic, for reasons related partly to the painting technique and materials used, and partly to its history. The thin, quite drily executed paintwork was applied to a very thin canvas with low adhesion known as cheesecloth, which made it fragile from the outset. Over the years, numerous areas of paint loss of varying sizes appeared. The work had been restored at least once before it entered the Kunsthaus in 1945. The original thin canvas, heavily damaged at the edges, has been lined over its entire surface, tears have been repaired, areas of paint loss filled and retouched.