Bertha Wegmann grew up in Denmark and trained as an artist in Munich, where she became friends with the Swedish painter Jeanna Bauck (1840–1926). They both moved to Paris in 1881, the year that this informal portrait of Bauck, sitting on a table with a book in her hand, was painted. The light enters through the studio window behind her, illuminating her blonde hair. Next to her lies a palette and some brushes. Wegmann created around 20 portraits of Jeanna Bauck – and Bauck in turn painted Wegmann several times.