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Before settling in London in 1901, Conder lived in Paris where his main occupation was painting figures on silk panels for fans and screens. He also painted decorations for dresses, and this is one of a number of watercolours that Conder made of women in sumptuous dresses, either engaged in conversation or sitting out at the theatre or a ball.

The influence of the French Rococo artist Antoine Watteau, is evident from both the style and subject matter of this watercolour.

September 2004