Between 1901 to 1903, Picasso executed a series of drawings on the back of trade cards belonging to the Junyer Vidal brothers, who owned a prosperous hosiery store in Barcelona, and were among the artist's earliest patrons. John Richardson has observed that, "One group provides a microcosm of Picasso's sexual fantasies: some have graffitilike directness; others an adolescent prurience; the most revealing manifest a perversity and misogyny that anticipate the artist's surrealist chimeras of the 1930s" (op. cit., p. 281).
Picasso's blatant eroticism in his drawings from Barcelona, led to the artist's fascination with the embrace, as seen in the following lot. Througout his life, his work continued to be fueled with sexual impulse and desire. "There is something touching about his lifelong perusal of the entire spectrum of love, running from the most tender embrace, to the rape, from kisses to violation and from caresses to bacchanalia...to see him using every approach, going back over styles in a quest so essential that it seems to determine the violence of a relationship to creatures and thing in which curiosity vies with insatiability" (A. Le Brun, "Painting in the Bedroom", exh. cat., Picasso Érotique, Réunion des musée nationaux, Paris, 2001, p. 35).