Art/ Collection/ Art Object


mid-12th century
Made in Touraine, France
Overall: 166 x 180 in. (421.6 x 457.2 cm)
Credit Line:
The Cloisters Collection, 1925
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Cloisters in Gallery 1
A number of playful elements enliven this otherwise sober doorway. A bear and a fox dance in the keystone at the top, while other animals, some realistic, some fantastic, grace the foliated capitals at eye level. Long appreciated on stylistic grounds for its resemblance to monuments found near Tours, this doorway comes from a small church about fifty miles southeast of the city. The main structure of the church was sold into private hands in the nineteenth century, and the main portal was moved to nearby Villeloin-Coulangé; it entered the collection of George Grey Barnard before 1925.
From the west façade of the church of Saint-Sulpice at Coulangé, near Tours (until 1906); portal removed by owner of the church, Joseph Pichard(sold 1906 to Mabilleau) ; installed by Léopold Mabilleau, Abbey of Saint-Sauveur, Villeloin (1906/7–removed ca. 1923) ; [ Lucien J. Demotte, Paris and New York (sold 1924 to Barnard)] ; [ George Grey Barnard, New York (sold 1925)]
Breck, Joseph. The Cloisters: A Brief Guide. 1st ed. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1926. p. 7, fig. 1.

Schrader, J. L. "George Grey Barnard: The Cloisters and the Abbaye." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, n.s., 37, no. 1 (Summer 1979). p. 48, fig. 61, 62.

Young, Bonnie. A Walk Through The Cloisters. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1979. p. 6.

Holmes, Lore L., and Charles T. Little. "The Romanesque Arch at The Cloisters Museum: Stone Analysis." Gesta (2000). pp. 24-27, fig. 1-4.

Nebelsztein, Virginie, and Bénédicte Fillion. "Le portail No. 25.120.878 du musée des Cloîtres: une nouvell attribution." Gesta 39, no. 1 (2000). pp. 13-23, fig. 1-2.

Husband, Timothy B. "Creating the Cloisters." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, n.s., 70, no. 4 (Spring 2013). p. 12, fig. 18.

Tournadre, Franck. "Villeloin-Coullongé. Un portail d'église du XIIe siècle conservé à New York enfin identifié." Bulletin Monumental 173, no. 4 (2015). pp. 369–72, fig. 1–3.

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