At the age of 24, Vigée-LeBrun executed her first portrait of Queen Marie-Antoinette of France, and over the course of her career, remained the principal portraitist of the French aristocracy. On the night that revolutionaries arrested Louis XVI and his queen in 1789, Vigée-Le Brun fled France and went into exile traveling throughout Europe for 12 years. Countess Maria Theresia Bucquoi was the daughter of Prince Johann Joseph Paar (1719-1792) and Countess Antonia Esterhazy (1719-1771), and the wife of Count Johann Josef Bucquoi (died 1803). The portrait was commissioned in 1793 by the sitter's brother, Prince Wenzel Paar. Vigée-LeBrun specifically recalls the painting in her Souvenirs when referring to the hospitality accorded to her by her Austrian patrons during her stay in Vienna. Upon its completion, the portrait was displayed in the salon of the palace of Prince Paar.