This painting, in oil on canvas, features iconography borrowed from the Harlequin motif that was developed at the turn of the 20th Century by artists including Pablo Picasso and Paul Cezanne.
Harlequin or Arlecchino in Italian, Arlequin in French, and Arlequín in Spanish is the most popularly known of the zanni or comic servant characters from the Italian Commedia dell’arte and its descendant, the Harlequinade.
The primary aspect of Harlequin was his physical agility. While generally depicted as stupid and gluttonous, he was very nimble and performed the sort of acrobatics the audience expected to see. The character would never perform a simple action when the addition of a cartwheel, somersault, or flip would spice up the movement.
According to some early illustrations, it would appear that Harlequin had the ability to breast feed his baby child …