Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Head of a Cleric from a Tomb Effigy

Made in France
Red sandstone
Overall: 9 5/8 x 6 3/4 x 7 9/16 in. (24.5 x 17.2 x 19.2 cm)
Overall (with base): 16 1/4 x 5 11/16 x 7 9/16 in. (41.3 x 14.5 x 19.2 cm)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1947
Accession Number:
Not on view
The identity of this remarkably realistic portrait is not known, but the shaved head (tonsure) indicates that a priest or a monk is represented. The supposed Moyenmoutier origin and similar sculptures in Basel and the Upper Rhine region suggest a creative, itinerant carver working in eastern France.
Said to have come from the Benedictine Abbey of Moyenmoutier (Vosges); [ M. Tedesch, Paris]; Raphael Stora, Paris and New York (sold 1947)
Müller, Theodor. Sculpture in the Netherlands, Germany, France and Spain. Baltimore: Penguin Books, 1966. p. 85, pl. 97B.

Hair: Cooper-Hewitt Museum, the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of Design, June 10 to August 17, 1980. Washington, DC: Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, Smithsonian Institution, 1980. p. 10.

Little, Charles T., ed. Set in Stone: The Face in Medieval Sculpture. New York, New Haven, and London: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2006. no. 59, pp. 141-142.

Wixom, William D. "Set in Stone. New York." The Burlington Magazine 148, no. 1245 (December 2006). p. 876, fig. 88.

Brilliant, Richard. "Faces Demanding Attention." Gesta 46, no. 2 (2007). p. 93-94, fig. 4.

Wixom, William D. "Late Medieval Sculpture in the Metropolitan: 1400 to 1530." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, n.s., 64, no. 4 (Spring 2007). p. 23.

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