Hubert Robert had been living in Rome for five years when he executed this watercolor. He was fascinated by the architecture and gardens he saw in Italy and became especially interested in the picturesque interaction between Italy's rich artistic past and the daily life he saw on the streets. This sheet does not represent an actual view. It is, rather, an invention of the artist, who liked to create architectural fantasies by combining the different types of structures he became familiar with in Rome. Here, he enlivened the view with washerwomen doing laundry.