Of all the Italian Orientalist painters, Fabbio Fabbi was by far the most prolific and commercially successful. Born in Bologna in 1861, he studied both painting and sculpture at the Accademy in Florence where he later reached the ranks of professor in 1893. From the outset of his career and the initial debut of his works in 1880, he was honored with multiple medals in both disciplines although he eventually devoted his artistic production solely to painting.
His flirtatious depictions of odalisques on show in slave markets, orientalist bazaars or dancing on white-washed terraces as shown in the present work found an eager market during his lifetime. His fame increased even more when he accepted a royal commission in the 1890s from the Gonzaga family of Mantua to decorate one of the rooms in their palace entirely in an Orientalist exotic style. He continued to exhibit widely throughout Italy and in 1898 was honored with the prestigious title of Cavaliere della Corona d'Italia.