Issues of tonality were crucial to Rembrandt, who handled each such instance with utmost originality. Nudes were a prominent theme in the late phase of his artistic career. Although influenced by Rubens and Italian painting, his figures are rendered without a hint of idealization. This nude figure was traditionally believed to depict a “negress”, but it probably depicts a woman lying in the shade. The sense of energy emanating from the drawing, the mastery of chiaroscuro, and the elegance of the body make this work one of the most beautiful nudes in Rembrandt’s oeuvre.