This painting is uncharacteristic of Maris, both in subject and in the style it has been painted. The scene shows three men wearing turbans and two younger boys outside a café, where the blazing sunshine has created strong areas of light and shade. The three men hold long smoking pipes (‘hookahs’ in Arabic), and rest on a crumbling wall. It was almost certainly made during the years he spent in Paris, where the art dealers Goupil et Cie. commissioned Maris to copy works by some of their most prominent artists, such as Jean-Léon Gérôme and Hippolyte Bellangé. This painting’s orientalist theme and precise detail show the influence of Gérôme, but it might have been copied from a photograph. It has a sharpness and precision that is not normally associated with Maris’s style of painting.