This painting is the left half of a decorative panel, commissioned in 1901 by the dramatist Jean Schopfer, who worked under the pseudonym of Claude Anet. The setting is the terrace and garden of a villa at Vasouy, along the coast from Honfleur in Normandy. Rented by Lucy and Jos Hessel, Vuillard also stayed there in the summer of 1901. The panel was installed in Schopfer's Paris apartment on the Avenue Victor Hugo later that year.
In about 1934 Schopfer's widow from his second marriage asked Vuillard to divide the panel into two, and throughout 1935 he reworked each half. The Gallery's other 'La Terrasse at Vasouy, The Lunch' was originally the right half. In the foreground can be seen the two Schopfer children and their nurse. The figure of Lucy Hessel behind them was inserted into the painting when it was reworked.
From The National Gallery Podcast: Episode Fifty, December 2010