Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Head of an Angel (?)

Date:
ca. 1250
Geography:
Made in Paris, France
Culture:
French
Medium:
Limestone, paint
Dimensions:
9 5/8 × 6 3/4 × 5 13/16 in. (24.5 × 17.2 × 14.8 cm)
Classification:
Sculpture-Stone
Credit Line:
Purchase, Michel David-Weill Gift, 1990
Accession Number:
1990.132
On view at The Met Cloisters in Gallery 08
The enigmatic smile and lyrical treatment of the hair distinguish this angelic head as an outstanding example of mid-thirteenth-century Parisian sculpture. Several stylistic and technical aspects, such as the type of limestone, link this work with sculpture made for the cathedral of Notre-Dame, Paris. The absence of weathering suggests the head was originally part of an interior setting, yet its exact origin and function remain unknown.
From Notre-Dame Cathedral, Paris (?); [ Joseph Altounian, Maçon (sold 1923)] ; [ Brummer Gallery, Paris and New York (1923–sold 1929, to Bing)] ; Alexander M. Bing, New York (1929–sold 1944, to Brummer) ; [ Brummer Gallery, Paris and New York (1944–sold 1949)] ; [Joseph Brummer Collection sale, Parke-Bernet Galleries, New York (April 20-23, 1949, no. 739)] ; Des Moines Art Center, Des Moines, IA ; [ Sotheby's, New York American (May 31, 1990, lot 20)]
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