The work of James Doyle Penrose comes up rarely for sale at auction, despite exhibiting regularly at the RA throughout the 1890s up until 1904. Originally from Michelstown, County Dublin, he studied in London at the RA schools, St John's Wood and the South Kensington Schools, settling in Hertfordshire. The choice of setting, a Grecian balcony overlooking the Mediterranean, owes much to Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema. It was he who popularised the vogue for classical genre subjects in the late 19th Century, creating idealised, lavish visions of a languid past. Here Penrose pays close attention to the rendering of different textures and surfaces in the painting, imbuing the whole with a warm golden glow. His son was the artist Sir Roland Penrose.