Delacroix is known as a Romantic artist and colorist. His painting Fanatics of Tangier from 1837-38 displays his interest in Orientalism popular in the first part of the 19th century and his use of color to highlight areas of canvas. "Orientalism" is a term used to describe the depiction of Near Eastern subjects by Western artists, particularly in the nineteenth century.
The painting portrays a gathering of a Muslim sect known as the Aissaouas, founded in the seventeenth century by Sidi-Mohammed-ben-Aissa. These devotees participated in rituals that emphasized prayer, physical exertion and contortion to reach a frenzied state.