Antique Door

The Antique Door takes its name from the cubiculi of Greco-Latin antiquity. These
small rooms, with one or two exits, mosaic floors, frescoed walls and painted
stucco ceilings, plunge the occupant into a fully colored environment. Particularly
remarkable are the cubiculi of the Augustan period (end of the 1st century B.C.),
known as the Farnesine, where they were discovered in the 19th century during the
construction of the Tiber quays in Rome. Magic of colors: cinnabar red, black,

Egyptian blue or white. A place of emotion and memory, the Ancient Door
presented here translates the intense energy conveyed by the painted walls of the
cubiculi of antiquity. The crossing opens on a vision of light and peace, the Pythia
of Delphi and the Sibyl of Cumae, prophetesses of Latin antiquity and keys to
reading the whole.

“To those who would be surprised by this meeting of the heart of the Bourbonnais
and eternal Rome, with the deep strata affirmed by these doors which open one to
the other these two worlds in appearance so distant, it is only to oppose the glance
of the artist, throughout a rich and abundant work, always in contact with one and
the other, informed by an ancient culture, of which he is, since always, the passer.
The eye of the rider in love with the forest of Tronçais analyzes ancient Rome with
the depth and the culture of the artist of the Renaissance that he is, in the depth of
himself, since always.
In the early days of his creation, already marked with the seal of an uncommon
power, Jean-Yves Bourgain had undertaken to open a first door, – an earthen door,
less imposing than the one in which Circe is enthroned, but already on the scale of
the wall that it allowed to cross. This door was then blind and was satisfied to let
guess the other side of the mirror. I lived for years with this door, whose mystery I
tried to penetrate, day after day. The doors that open today fulfill my highest
In love with the material as can only be a craftsman who knows how to master it
perfectly, he is the heir of the masters of the Cinquecento, who did not think their
work according to a technique used, but quite the contrary the technique according
to the expected result.
The depth of the gaze expresses the coherence of a work entirely marked by
sensitivity: the material becomes as intelligent as the hand that shapes it. The eye
follows the texture of the traces that accompany these doors, and their stratigraphy,
which reveals the depth of feelings and life, as the rings of trees several hundred
years old tell the story of the forest.”

Nicolas Grimal, Egyptologist, professor at the Collège de France, member of the
Institute, Académie des Inscriptions et Belles Lettres

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