Between 1801 and 1808 Josephus Augustus Knip spent his carreer in Paris. The artist regarded this sojourn in the French capital as a learning school for his draughtmanship. His tutor, Gerard van Speandonck (1746-1822), who actually resided in Maison de Buffon, introduced Knip to various key figures, such as Lodewijk Napoleon (1778-1846). The latter presented Knip a pension, a stipendium which enabled him to travel to Italy in 1809.
The present representation of Maison Buffon is one of the finest examples of the architectural themes Knip depicted in his French period. Maison de Buffon was named after George Louis Leclerc du Buffon (1707-1788), a French naturalist, mathematician and cosmologist, who published 36 quatro volumes of his Histoire naturelle. Buffon held the position of director at the Jardin du Roi, now called the Jardin des Plantes. After Buffon's death in 1788, his house became a residence for artists associated with the Jardin du Roi.