Somov began to work on this portrait in 1932 and completed it in 1933.
...two days ago, I finished a portrait in oil, a 'nu' (half-length), and afterwards I painted a 'still life' beside him: a mirror, behind him a chest of drawers, on which lay his shirt and vest, with a pair of boxing gloves hanging on the wall...the painting is not bad.
Letter dated 28 February 1933, p. 400
Finally, on the third day, I finished the 'nu' portrait of Daphnis. It became better in appearance, and Daphnis said - he joked - that it was better than Rembrandt and Ribera, whom I recall when I paint the human form.
Letter dated 30 March 1933, p. 401