Picasso had first encountered African carvings in the studio of Henri Matisse. Writers believe that this drawing evokes the African Fang masks Picasso had seen during his repeated visits to the Musée d'Ethnographie du Trocadéro (now part of the Musée du Quai Branly, Paris) in the spring of 1908.
Inscription: Signed, lower right: Picasso
[Galerie Alfred Flechtheim, Düsseldorf and Berlin, until ca. 1921; sold to Thayer]; Scofield Thayer, Vienna and New York (ca. 1921–d. 1982; on extended loan to the Worcester Art Museum, Massachusetts, 1934–82; his bequest to MMA)