Cesar Ceribelli was born in Rome in 1841 where he studied at the Acadamie de France. He moved to Paris in 1866 and became a naturalised French citizen. Ceribelli exhibited regularly at the Salon until 1907, specialising in genre figures and portraiture.
The present subject, Bianca Capello, was a Venetian noblewoman and the second wife of Francesco de Medici (d.1587). She was well-known for her beauty and intelligence, and her court intrigues were the scandal of her time. Ceribelli introduced her bust-length portrait in 1881.