The painting shows the artist's wife Alice with their infant son John in the first-floor sitting room of their house at 26 Church Row, Hampstead. Rothenstein married Alice Knewstub (the actress Alice Kingsley) in 1899. The couple first lived at Edwardes Square, Kensington before moving to the larger house at Hampstead in November 1902. The baby Alice was then expecting died immediately after birth, in December. John, their first child, had been born on 11 July 1901, and was therefore about age two at the time of this portrait. Their second surviving child, Rachel, born in December 1903, was probably expected at the time this painting was made.
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