Monroe Wheeler discusses Soutine's approach to portraiture in his catalogue accompanying the Museum of Modern Art's exhibition on Soutine held in 1950:
"These are speaking likenesses of more or less humble persons whom he invested with the poise of royalty, or of those who think themselves royal. Who can tell what Soutine thought of them? Surely he was enthralled by their idiosyncrasy. He caricatured them, but not to amuse himself or to punish them. He selects the salient features of these persons, their intensive gaze, outstanding ears, huge interworking hands, and renders them to excess with only summary indication of the body which he then cloaks in the magnificence of the palette. They are unforgettable." (M. Wheeler, Soutine The Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1950, p. 65)
Maurice Tuchman and Esti Dunow will include this painting in the forthcoming supplement of the Chaim Soutine catalogue raisonné.