Ensor signed and dated in pencil, "James Ensor 1888" According to Albert Croquez catalog of Ensor engravings (1947) , the head in the lower left corner is that of Rousseau's son. The image measures about 2 x 3 inches on a 4to sheet, 4to, From the collection of Augusta Bogaerts, life long friend of Ensor. The artist's name "Ensor'' is written in pencil along the verso imprint. Exceptional in association and fine condition.
Augusta Bogaerts (1870-1951) and Ensor had a long perhaps ambiguous relationship. She was 18 when they met in 1888, 10 years younger than the 28 year old artist. In that most creative year, of his 1888, Ensor turned his attention to religious themes incorporating his fascination with macabre masks and skeletons. He produced his "Chimera" etching among many engravings and also started to work on his most important painting "The Entry of Christ into Brussels," completed in 1889, considered "scandalous" at the time. Much later in his life, Ensor portrayed Augusta Bogaerts in his painting a "Portrait d'Augusta Bogaerts" (1939) in oil on panel.