The Symbolist Belgian artist Félicien Rops had come to Paris in 1862 to study etching with Bracquemond and Jacquemart, the founders of the new Société des Aquafortistes – within six months he had been elected to their committee and within a year had replaced Daubigny on its jury. In the early 1870’s Félicien Rops founded the Société Internationale des Aquafortistes in his native Belgium.
The overriding motivation behind Félicien Rops’s art was his obsession with the beauty and sensuality of women. Rops did not confine his view of sensual beauty to the fashionable ladies of the cities; to Félicien Rops eroticism could be found just as clearly in a peasant worker, often in the most mundane of situations.
Late in Félicien Rops’s life the Parisian publisher Gustave Pellet approached the artist with the idea of allowing the outstanding engraver and master of aquatint, Albert Bertrand (1854-1912), to make engravings of his works. Rops embraced the idea with great enthusiasm as he approved wholeheartedly of both Bertrand’s artistic manner and technical expertise. The brilliant mixed method prints which Albert Bertrand produced as a result of this union are now amongst the most sought after of all hand-made etchings and engravings both by and after Félicien Rops.