This tapestry belongs to a set of eight on The Arts and Sciences in the Colección Santander, which must in turn have been part of a larger group of which some are now missing. The different size of the individual tapestries is due to the fact that they were woven for specific locations, forming what was known in Brussels as a chambre en tapisserie.
According to Ripa, the female personification of Architecture wore iridescent colours and held a plumb line. The other figure cannot be identified with any certainty. He brandishes a sword, which could be a reference to Temperance, a virtue characteristic of man’s wisdom and maturity, but it seems to be made of wood, suggesting that this figure is Rhetoric.
All the tapestries in the set involve two themes: a moral one relating to the life of man, his virtues and vices, and an exaltation of the Arts, encompassing the Liberal Arts and the so-called Fine Arts.